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Basic laws on knives

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It is illegal to:

  • Carry a knife in public without good reason - unless it’s a knife with a folding blade three inches long (7.62 cm) or less
  • Carry, buy or sell any type of banned knife
  • Use any knife in a threatening way (even a legal knife, such as a Swiss Army knife)
  • Sell a knife to anyone under 18 (16 to 18 year olds in Scotland can buy cutlery and kitchen knives) unless it’s a knife with a folding blade three inches long (7.62 cm) or less, eg a Swiss Army knife

Lock knives (knives with blades that can be locked when unfolded) are not folding knives, and are illegal to carry in public without good reason.

The maximum penalty for an adult carrying a knife is four years in prison and a fine of £5,000.

Lives Not Knives