Building site and domestic bonfires, emissions of dark smoke and emissions from industrial chimneys. You can report smoke pollution based on the type of smoke being emitted.

In this section:
Smoke from chimneys

Smoke from chimneys

Information about the Hillingdon smoke control area and household open fires and chimneys.

chimneyUnder the Clean Air Act 1993, we have declared that Hillingdon is a smoke control area.

The law in a smoke control area

It is an offence:

  • to emit smoke from a domestic chimney
  • for any person or company to obtain or deliver unauthorised fuels to a building, unless an exempt appliance is in use
  • to use ordinary wood and bituminous coal 

Smoke control areas only restrict smoke from domestic chimneys and do not cover domestic and commercial bonfires.

Report smoke, fumes or smells

Open fires

You will need to obtain either:

  • an anthracite product which is inherently smokeless
  • a product such as fire logs or briquettes which is listed on the approved list of authorised fuels

Burning wood or coal

You can only burn wood chips, pellets, logs or coal in an exempt appliance. These are appliances (ovens, wood burners and stoves) which have been exempted under the Clean Air Act. These have passed tests to confirm that they are capable of burning an unauthorised or inherently smoky solid fuel without emitting smoke.

View current exempt appliances

Emissions of dark smoke from commercial chimneys

Further powers exist under the Clean Air Act which control dark smoke emissions from chimneys. Please notify us immediately so that an investigation can be made.

Certain industrial sites are issued with an environmental permit which controls emissions to air.

Neighbour has smoke coming from their chimney

We will write to both parties to explain these requirements and confirm the type of fuel being burned. This may be sufficient to resolve the matter at an early stage. Non-compliance will trigger monitoring visits and necessary enforcement action will then be taken.

If you have any queries, get in touch with the anti-social behaviour team by calling 01895 556000.

Page last updated: 16 Jun 2021