Decision details

Position Statement on the Intentional Release of Sky (Chinese) Lanterns and Balloons

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No




1.     That the position statement on the intentional release of sky (Chinese) lanterns and balloons is adopted by Cabinet, subject to public consultation.

2.     That the minority groups potentially affected by the adoption of the position statement be consulted.

3.     Authority is delegated to the Strategic Director of Commercial & Operations, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Commercial & Operations, to make any consequential changes as a result of the consultation.


Reasons for decision:


1.    The report of the Cabinet Member for Commercial and Operations on the Position Statement on the intentional release of sky (chinese) lanterns and balloons.

2.    There is currently no UK legislation available to control this issue, therefore it is for the local authority to consider whether a position statement is necessary.

3.    It is impossible to control where the lanterns and balloons land, and they can travel large distances before falling to the ground or into streams and rivers which may lead to the sea.   Being a predominantly rural district, there may be greater risks to livestock, wildlife and crops than in more densely populated areas.

4.    The Council has demonstrated its commitment to improving the attractiveness of the district through the Big Clean and the debris from these lanterns and balloons will have a detrimental impact on the local environment.

5.    Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee were consulted on 26 November 2019 and was in agreement in issuing a position statement.


Other options considered and rejected:


1.     The Council is not obliged to publish a position statement and can remain silent on the issue.

2.     While a breach of a position statement would not be legally enforceable, if approved, it can be included in Council policies and agreements relating to the use of Council land eg. parks and open spaces for public events etc.

Publication date: 21/01/2020

Date of decision: 21/01/2020

Decided at meeting: 21/01/2020 - Cabinet

Accompanying Documents: