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Smoke control areas

It is our responsibility to control emissions of dark smoke, grit, dust and fumes from industrial premises. We can also restrict domestic smoke emissions by declaring smoke control areas (SCAs), where smoke from domestic chimneys is restricted.

Where to find help

What's the legal position

If you live within a SCA and allow smoke to escape from your chimney you could be prosecuted. There are several SCAs within Cheshire West and Chester and the links below allow you to download a map showing the areas that are included.

What fuel can I use

Anthracite, semi-anthracite and other authorised solid smokeless fuels can be burnt on open hearths in a SCA. Gas and electricity are also designated as authorised fuels. The Clean Air Act prohibits the sale of unauthorised solid fuels for delivery to a building within a SCA unless the building or fireplace is exempt. It is also an offence to obtain unauthorised fuel for use in a non-exempt fireplace within a SCA.

What solid fuel appliances are exempt

Many solid fuel appliances (ovens, wood burners and multi-fuel stoves) have been exempted by Statutory Instruments (Orders) under the Clean Air Act, they will have passed tests showing that they can burn an unauthorised or smoky solid fuel without emitting smoke and therefore can be used in smoke control areas.

A list of those appliances which are permitted within a smoke control area can be found below.

It should be noted that many appliances have conditions, such as the type of fuel that can be used, that apply and allow them to be used within a SCA. The DEFRA website gives more detailed information which includes details of authorised fuels, exempt appliances and the Clean Air Act 1993.

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Wood used in appliances needs to be dried (seasoned) before it can be burnt. Further information is available on the Woodsure website below.

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Open fires and woodburning stoves

A guide to reducing the impacts of using stoves and open fires can be found below.