Barbecue and garden safety

If you are planning a barbecue or garden party, make sure you follow the below top tips or view our Barbecue & Garden Safety leaflet here.


  • NEVER place fire pits, chimineas, barbecues or candles too close to gazebos, sheds, fences, trees/bushes or anything else that could catch fire.
  • NEVER use petrol or paraffin to start or revive a fire or barbecue. You should only use recognised lighters or starter fuel on coals.
  • NEVER leave a barbecue unattended. DO NOT leave them to smoulder and ensure they are completely out before leaving them.
  • Enjoy yourself but don't drink too much alcohol if you are in charge of a barbecue or any cooking.
  • DO NOT empty barbecue or fire ashes/embers into a dustbin or wheelie bin. If they're hot they can melt the plastic and start a fire. Empty them onto bare garden soil.
  • Keep a bucket of water, sand or garden hose nearby for emergencies.

Burning garden waste

Please do not burn items in your garden unless absolutely necessary. If you must burn, follow this advide:

  • NEVER burn household rubbish, tyres or anything that contains paint, plastic or foam.
  • DO NOT burn close to property, trees, fences, sheds or other buildings.
  • Be courteous to your neighbours. If you are planning a substantial bonfire, let them know.
  • As with barbecues, make sure you keep a bucket of water/sand or a garden hose nearby.
  • NEVER leave a garden fire unattended.
  • If the fire gets out of control, dial 999 immediately.
  • Check if you live within a smoke free zone. You could be committing an offence if you burn inside one.

Other useful garden fire safety advice...

  • NEVER store gas cylinders with combustible materials like rubbish or wood. Avoid storing them in sheds. When involved in fire, cylinders not only pose a risk to you, your family and your property, but also to our firefighters.
  • Make sure cigarettes are disposed of carefully and are fully extinguished. They should be stubbed our and put into an ashtray. DO NOT throw cigarettes onto the ground.

Be careful with weed burners.

We have seen an increase in incidents caused by people using weed burners in their garden.

Some of these incidents have seen fires spread to bushes, sheds and even neighbouring cars.

During warm, dry weather, we would advise you NOT to use weed burners and use chemical weed killer instead.

The ground and other items in your garden are significantly dryer than usual and can easily become involved in fire.

Going camping?

Make sure you know what the fire arrangements are on your camp site. Follow these basic precautions to reduce the risk of fire starting and spreading...

  • NEVER use candles in or near a tent - torches are safer.
  • DON'T smoke inside a tent either
  • Keep your cooking area clear of items that could catch fire easily, including long, dry grass
  • NEVER take a portable barbecue or lit charcoal into an enclosed space like a tent or caravan. Not only is this a fire risk, it can also put you at risk of carbon monoxide poisoning.

STOP GRASS FIRES: Avoid open fires and barbecues in open countryside, woodland or on beaches. Take your litter home with you and ensure cigarettes are disposed of safely.