Subscribe      List an Event or Business      Invite a Writer      Write for WN      Writers      Other Locations

Nine Bizarre English Laws

Home > Newcastle Upon Tyne > Lists | Quirky | Travel
Published March 25th 2016
Excuse me ma'am, do you have a license for that television?
british policeman bobby UK laws interesting weird fun bizarre strange England
British Policeman. Source: Southbanksteve / Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license


We all think we know what to do and not do on any normal day. But every country has a few weird laws floating around, and England is no exception. Whether you're a visitor or a local I can almost guarantee you've broken one...

1. I hope you're feeling healthy next time you're touring the country's capital, because it is illegal to die in the Houses of Parliament in London. I suppose they couldn't prosecute you afterwards though

2. According to British law, it's still perfectly legal to kill any Scotsman who enters the city of York if he happens to be carrying a bow and arrow. However, I wouldn't recommend falling back on this defense in court!

3. Drank too much OJ? A pregnant woman is legally allowed to relieve herself anywhere! A man may relieve himself on the rear tire of his vehicle, provided his right hand is on the back of the vehicle.

4. Yet another strange law says that a boy under the age of ten may not see a mannequin naked... I don't think John Lewis is enforcing this one though

5. A very old law states that you cannot visit the cinema or theater, or use public transport, if you've eaten garlic in the last four hours. I wouldn't mind if this one came back!

6. According to a Royal Decree put in place by Charles II, there must be at least six ravens living in the Tower of London at any time. Legend has it that if the ravens fly off, the British Monarchy will fall! Don't worry though, the Tower usually keeps a surplus of ravens just in case!

7. Alcohol is prohibited in the Houses of Parliament... with one exception. The chancellor may drink during the reading of the annual budget - perhaps recently he feels the need to?

8. Under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847, section 28, it is illegal to keep a pigsty in front of your house... unless you hide it. I guess all of those 500 thousand pigs in England are well-hidden!

9. Finally, something which UK residents don't seem to question but is very strange to the rest of the world: it is illegal to own a television without a license.

You no longer need to worry about what was previously one of the most commonly broken laws - singing the Happy Birthday song in a public place! After a protracted lawsuit, the song is now in the public domain. So sing away!
Help us improve  Click here if you liked this article  6
Share: email  facebook  twitter
Your Comment
Articles from other cities
Popular Articles
Categories
Lists
Questions