Parks and open spaces byelaws
Lambeth contains over 60 parks, commons and green spaces, all of which are covered and protected by the Lambeth Parks and Open Spaces Byelaws.
These Byelaws came into force on 6 April 2005 and replaced an older set of byelaws which date back to 1932.
Why do we need byelaws?
We put byelaws in place to help improve your and other people's enjoyment of Lambeth's parks and green spaces.
Byelaws are local laws designed to complement rather than replace existing laws.
Our parks and green spaces are places for all sorts of activities, like walking, sports, play, picnics and of course just relaxing. These are all positive uses of open spaces, but we need to manage and control all activities, in case they cause upset or damage to others, or the site itself.
Sometimes parks and green spaces are used for activities that are unacceptable. For example, an activity might cause distress or even injury to other users, or damage council or personal property.
The byelaws allow us to monitor such activity and if necessary prevent it altogether.
We want to help make your visit an enjoyable one for you, your family and friends.
What do the Lambeth parks and open spaces byelaws cover?
You can download a full set of the byelaws here:
You'll also find a full set of the byelaws displayed at key locations in Lambeth's parks and green spaces.
The byelaws contain information on how we manage a wide range of activities and issues, such as:
- children's playgrounds, paddling pools and play equipment
- travel and transport, including the use of cycles, horses and motor vehicles
- sports activities, e.g. fishing, field sports and ball games like football, tennis or cricket
- recreational activities like kite and model aircraft flying, metal detectors or boats
- public shows and performances, including trading and the sale of goods
- preventing possible damage from things like bonfires, fireworks, parking or camping.
How does the council enforce the byelaws?
Any officer of the council can enforce the byelaws, as can a police officer either if they witness someone breaking a byelaw or are informed by the public or a council officer of an offence.
If someone breaks a byelaw, a council or police officer will approach the offender(s) and explain why that activity cannot be permitted or must be controlled.
We aim to inform and raise awareness, so we can avoid further offences.
If somebody fails to take notice of our advice and continues to commit the offence, then a council or police officer will take down details for use as evidence.
We may have to take further action, and the maximum fine, following court conviction, for a breach of any one of the byelaws is £500.
What happens if I see someone breaking a byelaw?
Please don't attempt to take the law into your own hands - you must always let Lambeth Council and the police deal with any offences or breach of the byelaws.
You can help us by noting carefully what you have seen, and where and when it happened.
If you feel the incident is serious enough to require the police to intervene, please phone 999 as soon as you can without your safety being compromised.
You can then let us know or the police will inform us once they have responded.
If you think the incident is something the council should be dealing with please let us know.
You can phone or email us, or approach a member of parks or contractor staff, giving as much information as you can, so we can attend and gather evidence to take any action.
Who to contact
If you want to find out about, or obtain a copy of, the Lambeth Parks and Open Spaces Byelaws (including in a different language or special format), or to report a breach of the byelaws, please contact us.
Phone: 020 7926 9000
4th Floor Blue Star House
234-244 Stockwell Road
London SW9 9SP