Belfast Telegraph

Bonfire licensing scheme still on hold

A controversial bonfires licensing scheme by a Northern Ireland council will not come into effect in time for the Twelfth of July.
A controversial bonfires licensing scheme by a Northern Ireland council will not come into effect in time for the Twelfth of July.

By Michael Sheils McNamee

A consultation on a council's controversial bonfire licensing scheme will not finish until long after the Twelfth of July - despite being in the pipeline for months.

In March, members of Mid-Ulster District Council voted through recommendations put forward by its Bonfire Working Group.

Among other things, this included the requirement for bonfire organisers to prove fires held on council property met certain conditions.

At a meeting on Tuesday night of the council's Environment Committee, councillors agreed to invite feedback on a newly developed policy - effectively pushing out the start date for the scheme until 2019.

A 13-week consultation will now begin on Monday, June 4, with the public asked to come forward with feedback on the new policy.

Under the bonfire management plan, organisers are asked to make commitments around bonfire heights, materials being used for burning, stewarding and safeguarding, and event management plans.

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