Top Ten Most Crazy Laws In The UK

Funny Laws in the UK



The United Kingdom set up The Law Commission in 1965.

This much-needed independent body was set up to update the country’s legal system and push for reforms where needed.

Since its implementation, over two thousand outdated laws have been repealed, but not all of them!

I guess some of the old rules are so ridiculous and so outdated that they didn’t feel a need to change those laws.

Here’s just a handful of some of the funniest ones that are still in place today.

It’s illegal to enter the House of Parliament wearing a suit of armor.

The House of Parliaments in London

A 1313 Statute Forbidding Bearing of Armour, forbids members of Parliament from entering the House while wearing armor.

This particular statute was put into place after a period of political turmoil.

It’s illegal to import Polish potatoes into England.

Potatoes resting in the dirt.

In 2004, the UK government decided to give Polish potatoes a time-out with the 2004 Polish Potatoes Order.

No, it wasn’t because the potatoes were misbehaving or anything, but because of a plant disease called ring rot that could harm crops.

Fortunately for potato lovers, the order only restricted the importation of potatoes used for agricultural purposes – and even those were only banned if you didn’t first gain approval. 

It’s illegal to be drunk in a pub.

A view of the inside of a British pub, with taps for real ale and a glass of ale on the counter. In the background a fireplace can be seen

Here’s a funny one that many people may think goes against the very purpose of pubs in the first place!

Section 12 of the Licensing Act of 1872 states that every person found drunk on licensed premises could be fined. 

In addition, the Metropolitan Police Act of 1839 forbids the keeper of a public house (a pub) to allow any acts of drunken or disorderly conduct from happening on their premises. 

It is illegal to gamble in a library.

A British library

The Library Offenses Act of 1898 makes it illegal to gamble in a library.

The law also prohibits abusive or obscene language.

This would mean that online gambling at a library would be against the law, even if you’re using your own laptop.

Trespassing is okay for certain people.

A sign saying 'Private - no public right of way'

Trespassing is illegal, except by huers and baulkers. An Act of 1603 comes from an ancient custom in Cornwall.

People known as huers and baulkers would stand on the cliffs and shout to fishing boats, directing them toward schools of fish.

The Act gives those on the cliffs the right of entry onto the lands of others and defense against trespassing.

It’s against the law to shake a carpet.

A boy hitting a rug on a washing line

Under the Metropolitan Police Act of 1839, it’s illegal to beat or shake a mat, carpet, or rug in the streets of London.

The only time you may beat them is before 8 am. So set your alarm – you’ve been warned!

You can’t use a cow, horse, or steam engine while drunk.

Cow with a shocked face

Think you can’t get a DUI for drunken horse riding? Think again.

The Licensing Act of 1872 explains that operating a cow, horse or steam engine while intoxicated carries either a prison sentence or a fine.

It’s illegal to handle salmon in suspicious circumstances.

A man holding a salmon

This is a recent law, which is even more absurd.

But under the Salmon Act of 1986, it is an offence to receive or dispose of salmon under suspicious circumstances.

Officers have a right to investigate if they reasonable believe that the salmon has been illegally fished.

All beached whales and sturgeons belong to the reigning monarch.

A UK beach

By the law from Edward II in 1324, all sturgeons and whales should be offered to the reigning monarch in case they want them.

Along with dolphins and porpoises, they are considered royal fish and any captured within 3 miles of shore, or wash ashore, should be first offered to the crown.

It’s illegal to carry a plank along the pavement.

A man carrying a plank in the streets of London

Another law from the Metropolitan Police Act, it is an offence to carry a plank on the sidewalk.

This Act also includes flying kites on the street and sliding on ice on the sidewalk.


Well there are some stupid laws from the United Kingdom I can proudly say I have broken four of the laws above!

If you know of any more please leave them in a comment!

About The Author

Luke Ward
Luke Ward

Luke Ward is the owner of The Fact Site. He has over 14 years of experience in researching, informative writing, fact-checking, SEO & web design. In his spare time, he loves to explore the world, drink coffee & attend trivia nights.

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