Last updated: 15 August 2023
Next review: 15 August 2024
Report smoke or bonfire problem
If the bonfire is causing an immediate danger to surrounding properties, call 999.
If you have a wood burner enquiry or wish to report a smoke nuisance use the form below.
- Bonfires are a bad idea in built up areas. They worsen our poor air quality and cause a nuisance to neighbours.
- Burning material on a bonfire wastes resources that could otherwise be reused or recycled.
- You should place fresh green plant material from gardens in our brown wheeled bins or in green bags. You can bring it to a Household Waste and Recycling Centre and leave it in the skips provided for this purpose.
- Alternatively, you can build your own compost box for garden waste. This turns green garden waste into compost for soil, so no need for a bonfire.
- You can dispose of any DIY waste you produce at a Household Waste and Recycling Centre. If a contractor, like a builder or decorator, works on your home, they are responsible for disposing of any waste.
All household refuse must be disposed of either through the normal refuse collection bin or by taking to a Household Waste and Recycling Centre. A collection service is available for large items such as furniture, mattresses etc. Most items of bulky household waste can be picked up for free. You must never dispose of it by burning it on a bonfire.
If you have a bonfire, it is your responsibility to avoid smoke emissions that cause a nuisance, as this is an offence. If you fail to comply with this information and advice, it may lead to enforcement action, including unlimited fines.
If you have a vehicle, it is vital that you keep it well maintained, especially for the MOT test.
Smoky vehicles damage the environment and worsen air quality. In our borough, vehicles are the main source of air pollution.
If you see a vehicle belching out excessive smoke you can report it to the DVSA's smoky vehicle hotline: 0300 123 9000
Alternatively, you can complete a smoky vehicle report card
They'll want to know:
- The vehicle's number plate
- The type of vehicle (be as specific as possible)
- The date, time and place where you saw the vehicle
- If possible, the name of the vehicle's operator (the company or owner)
Find out more on the DVSA website.
If you see a bus emitting excessive smoke, you can report it to Transport for London, call: 0845 300 7000 (8am to 8pm Monday to Friday) or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Smoking in public
Smoking is illegal in most public places and workplaces. This includes all offices, factories, shops, pubs, bars, cafes, transport, restaurants, clubs (including private members clubs) including work vehicles and enclosed public spaces.
All premises where people are employed or to which the public has access are now smokefree.
If you see someone breaking the law by smoking in a smokefree place or vehicle you can let us know by:
- Emailing us at Environmentalhealth@walthamforest.gov.uk
- Phoning us on 020 8496 3000
- Phoning the National Smokefree line on 0800 587 1667