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Volume 405: debated on Thursday 22 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussion she has had with the Home Department regarding the anti-social behaviour aspect of firework abuse; and if she will make a statement. [115439]

The Department has been in discussion with the Home Office about its penalty notices for the disorder offences scheme. Pilots are currently running in four police force areas in England and Wales. There are 11 penalty offences in the scheme, including that of throwing fireworks in the street. The Home Secretary announced on 14 May that the scheme is now to be rolled out nationally.

Discussions with the Home Office have also taken place on the anti-social misuse of fireworks relating to issues of enforcement arising from the current Private Member's Fireworks Bill.

To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions she has had with ministerial colleagues in the Northern Ireland Office regarding the implementation of the Explosives (Fireworks) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2002. [115662]

The Department had discussions with the Northern Ireland Office regarding the Explosives (Fireworks) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2002 when the Fireworks Bill, which my right hon. Friend sponsors, was being drafted.In the light of the recent press notice issued by the Northern Ireland Office highlighting the success of the Northern Ireland Regulations, officials will be having further discussions particularly in relation to the lessons learned in Northern Ireland and what elements of the Northern Ireland legislation might be used in any fireworks regulations applying to the rest of the United Kingdom which may come out of the Fireworks Bill currently before Parliament.