Alert close - icon Fill 1 Copy 10 Untitled-1 tt copy 3 Untitled-1 Untitled-1 tt copy 3 Fill 1 Copy 10 menu Group 3 Group 3 Copy 3 Group 3 Copy Page 1 Group 2 Group 2 Skip to content

Sales to children

The law recognises that products like alcohol, tobacco and fireworks can be harmful. It's illegal to sell them to children under 18 years of age.

There are a range of other products which are age-restricted, including DVDs and electronic cigarettes.

If you run a shop selling tobacco, you can download the statutory tobacco notice attached to this page. This notice must be prominently displayed in all shops where tobacco is sold. It should only be printed in A3 size because the law says that's how big it must be.

Sales of alcohol to children

We're committed to working in partnership with the police and licensing authorities to tackle the sale of alcohol to children under 18 years old.

It's a criminal offence to sell alcohol to anyone under 18 and it's also illegal for a person under 18 to buy alcohol.

As well as protecting young people from the dangers of excessive drinking, licensing laws also seek to protect local communities from antisocial behaviour caused by young people who ignore the law and drink too much. We realise that it's a small minority of young people who get drunk and cause trouble in this way. The majority of young people do not hang around street corners drinking and are just as concerned about antisocial behaviour as adults are.

The focus of the work of Trading Standards has been to educate people who sell alcohol on what the law requires and then tackle those who ignore the law by taking strong action where appropriate.

You can help us to do this by reporting any incidents which affect your local community. This information will allow us to identify which areas are suffering the most and target our resources accordingly. We'll follow this information up and if appropriate, we can arrange for our young volunteers to visit the shop and attempt to buy alcohol.

Report a trader

You can also find out more on the role of the Trading Standards service under the Licensing Act 2003.

Volunteer for underage sales

We place a high priority on our work to enforce the laws relating to age-restricted products. In some cases we work with young volunteers to check that shops are complying with the law.

Underage volunteers work with a team of officers to see what happens when they try to buy products such as alcohol and tobacco from shops, off-licences and pubs across the county.

Exercises last no more than 8 hours and take place throughout the year during evenings, weekends and school holidays. Volunteers are instructed before taking part and are closely supervised.

If you're aged between 15 and a half and 16 and a half and would like to be considered for this work, let your parent or carer know first and then apply.

Apply to be an underage volunteer