Camden is a designated Smoke Control Area under the Clean Air Act. That means that during the recent cold spell there are certain limitations that households need to adhere to.

Smoke from a chimney is not legal unless it’s from an exempt appliance. There’s the clean air reasoning, and of course for safety reasons (remember the Great Fire of London?)

In a Smoke Control Area, you can only burn a limited number of defined fuels or any of the following ‘smokeless’ fuels, unless you’re using an exempt appliance.

Only the following fuels can be burnt in an open fireplace or a non-approved appliance:

  • Anthracite
  • semi-anthracite
  • gas
  • low volatile steam coals and other ‘authorised fuels’

Put it this way: imaging every household had a fire on the go at the same time to keep warm – the cloud of black smoke above would be unbearable. Fortunately nowadays, until many decades ago, most houses have central heating so fireplaces are a luxury.

Wood, wood chips and wood pellets are non-authorised fuels and can only be burned in appliances approved by the Secretary of State.

This doesn’t mean you can’t go outside and enjoy a BBQ though in the warmer weather!

See the full details on the Camden Council website.

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