Many parts of the UK are smoke control areas where you can’t emit smoke from a chimney unless you’re burning an authorised fuel or using exempt appliances, eg burners or stoves

You can be fined up to £1,000 if you break the rules.

Find out if you live in a smoke control area

Contact your local council to see if you live in a smoke control area. The environmental services department will be able to help you.

What you can burn in smoke control areas

In a smoke control area you can only burn fuel on the list of authorised fuels, or any of the following ‘smokeless’ fuels, unless you’re using an exempt appliance:

  • anthracite
  • semi-anthracite
  • gas
  • low volatile steam coal

Oil and kindling

You can use oil or other liquid fuels in specially designed or adapted fireplaces.

Kindling can sometimes be used but ask your council because there are different rules in different areas.

Exempt appliances that can burn unauthorised fuels

Unauthorised fuels, such as wood, can be burned in exempt appliances such as some boilers, cookers and stoves.

You must only use the types of fuel that the manufacturer says can be used in the appliance.

Outdoor ovens, burners and barbecues

You can use outdoor barbecues, chimineas, fireplaces or pizza ovens.

Any of these appliances that release smoke through a chimney of a building - eg a summerhouse - can only burn authorised fuel or must be exempt.

Garden bonfires

You’re allowed garden bonfires in smoke control areas but you need to follow the rules on bonfires.