In the UK it is permissible to sell fireworks to the general public (Categories 1, 2 and 3 only) during the four key selling periods:
On the first day of the Chinese New Year and the three days immediately preceding it
On the day of Diwali and the three days immediately preceding it
During the period beginning on the 15th October and ending on the 10th November
During the period beginning on the 26th December and ending on the 31st December
Anyone wishing to sell outside of these periods will have to apply for an all year sales licence via their Local Licencing Authority. In almost every case they will need to be the holder of a valid storage licence too.
Fireworks can only be sold to persons aged 18 years or older. Sparklers are classed as fireworks and the same laws apply.
It is illegal for under 18s to possess fireworks in a public place.
It is not a legal requirement to have any kind of licence or training to buy consumer fireworks.
There is no such thing as either a licence or training that entitles a member of the public to buy Category 4 (professional) fireworks. These are only available to bona fide professional fireworks companies with all year insurance and licenced storage.
Consumer fireworks must conform to British Standards (BS 7114), be classified as Category 2 (Garden) or Category 3 (display) fireworks and carry a CE mark.
There is a noise limit of 120db on all consumer fireworks.
Certain items are banned in the UK. These include bangers, air bombs and jumping jacks, regardless of whether these are CE marked and approved for sale in other EU countries.
Never buy fireworks from: -
the back of a “white van”
the “bloke down the pub”
from unlicensed outlets such as car boot sales or market stalls
from anyone who knocks on your door
No matter how much of a bargain they look, they could be illegal imports which have not even had the most basic safety testing.