CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: Please avoid having any bonfires whilst the Coronavirus controls are in place. A lot of people at home are vulnerable and any one of your neighbours might have respiratory issues or even be fighting the Coronavirus itself. During this difficult time please think of others before lighting any fires

Garden bonfires produce smoke and smells, which can annoy neighbours as well as damage the environment. Garden trimmings that are still green and wet can give off lots of smoke, and materials like plastics and rubber create poisonous chemicals when they are burnt.

You should never burn household or commercial waste on a bonfire, only garden waste. However, we encourage more environmentally friendly ways of disposing of your garden waste.

For more information about alternative waste disposal methods, see our Rubbish & Recycling pages. Please note - Due to Coronavirus some services may be disrupted during this time and we encourage residents to suitably store and dispose of their waste in such a way to not cause a nuisance to neighbouring properties until services are fully resumed.  We thank Tendring residents for following the guidance given during this time.   

There are no byelaws for bonfires in the Tendring District and there are no specific times of day restricting bonfires.  However if smoke is caused by a bonfire is creating a nuisance, the council has powers to take action under the provisions of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

The Environmental Protection Act 1990 allows us to take offenders to court should their bonfires cause a nuisance to neighbours. (i.e. have an unreasonable effect on their enjoyment of their home or garden).  We do not investigate into ‘one-off’ bonfires and they need to be occurring frequently in order for us to take action.

Reporting a bonfire nuisance

To help us deal with your complaint you should give us:

  • Your contact details: including name, address and telephone number
  • The address that is causing you nuisance
  • Details of the nuisance and how often you are being disturbed, including dates and times and how this is affecting you

Useful links

Please Note- We will not answer anonymous complaints. If you contact us, your identity will be kept confidential in accordance with Data Protection legislation, however if the case goes to Court the identity of the person who has complained is likely to be revealed.

To make a complaint about bonfires from your neighbours, you can report it via our online form or by contacting:

Tendring District Council
Environmental Protection Team
88-90 Pier Avenue
Clacton on Sea
CO15 1TN
01255 686767

Last updated on: 10/05/2022 - 20:15