Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Halloween and Bonfire Night

The 31st October and 5th November are dates that have long been associated with fun, but elderly people can be left frightened and intimidated by youngsters calling at their home for "trick or treat" and families can find their pets scared by the bangs from fireworks.

Cllr Andrew Williams, Coventry City Council Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Community Safety said, "We see a significant increase in reports of nuisance and anti-social behaviour during this time of year and so the Coventry Community Safety partnership appeal for people to make this time of year as pleasant as possible by showing respect. Parents should ensure that their children are suitably advised and supervised."

Details of locally organised bonfire and firework displays/parties will be advertised in the local media. However, if people wish to hold their own event they are being asked to inform their neighbours well ahead of time. It's illegal to erect a bonfire on public land and the public are asked to report unscheduled bonfires or incidences of fly-tipped rubbish which could become a bonfire to 0500 834333 8am to 8pm (Mon to Fri) and 9am to 1pm (Saturday).

Under the new Fireworks Act there is now a curfew preventing people from lighting fireworks between 11.00 pm and 7.00 am – apart from a few exceptions (New Year’s Eve, Chinese New Year and Diwali) outside of these times, you may be liable to prosecution. Similarly, it is now illegal for children under 18 years old to purchase or be in possession of fireworks. Breaches of the law could result in a £5,000 fine, six months in prison or an on-the-spot fine.

Should you experience any difficulties please contact the Anti Social Behaviour hot line, "It’s Your Call", on 024 7683 1300 or in an emergency 999.