10 bizarre laws you may have broken from flying a kite to handling a salmon

10 bizarre laws you might have broken from flying a kite to handling a salmon <i>(Image: Canva)</i>
10 bizarre laws you might have broken from flying a kite to handling a salmon (Image: Canva)

The majority of Brits have previously broken the law often without realising it, according to new research

Some are more modern and well-known than others, with the likes of drunk driving and thievery being some of the most commonly broken laws.

While most of us do a pretty good job of behaving in our day-to-day lives and try to avoid breaking the law, new research suggests that the majority of Brits are lawbreakers.

Many have already broken the law without even realising, from being drunk in a public place or pub to flying a kite.

But now legal experts from Schmidt and Clark have taken a look at the most bizarre laws in the UK.

The Northern Echo:
The Northern Echo:

The UK's 10 most bizarre laws

1. Handling salmon in suspicious circumstances (Salmon Act, 1986)

The law was created to prevent any illegal activities within the salmon business, this law prohibits engaging in any suspicious circumstances while dealing with this particular species.

2. Shaking your rug in the street (Metropolitan Police Act, 1839)

Shaking mats, carpets, and rugs on the street is illegal, with an exception being made for doormats which can be beaten or shaken, but only before 8 a.m.

3. Flying a kite in a public place (Metropolitan Police Act, 1839)

In order to prevent any nuisance and danger to people in public places, one of the most popular summer pastimes could technically get you in trouble with the police.

4. Carrying planks of wood down a sidewalk (Metropolitan Police Act, 1839)

Dating back to the Middle Ages, it is prohibited to transport planks down the sidewalk unless you are intending to load them on a vehicle, or if you are unloading them from one. This includes casks, wheels, ladders, and poles.

5. Sliding on icy streets (Metropolitan Police Act, 1839)

As it is considered highly dangerous, the 1839 law still prohibits sliding down snowy and icy streets.

The Northern Echo:
The Northern Echo:

6. Honking your horn aggressively (Highway Code)

Everyone loses their patience in traffic, but according to this rule, beeping your horn should only be used to announce your presence to others, not to express the disapproval and anger of other traffic participants.

7. Dressing up as a police officer or a member of the armed forces (Seamen’s and Soldiers’ False Characters Act, 1906, and Police Act, 1996)

In order to prevent any confusion among the public, it is illegal to falsely present yourself as a police officer or a member of the army. However, this also means that all the cute Halloween costumes kids are wearing every year are breaking the law.

8. Asking A Friend For Small Change Isn’t Advised - Vagrancy Act, 1824

Asking a friend for the extra cash is deemed illegal begging.

9. Being drunk in a public place or a pub (Metropolitan Act, 1839)

According to the Metropolitan Act from 1839, keepers of public houses aren’t permitted to allow drunkenness on their property.

After that, the Licensing Act of 1872 states that a person drunk on a highway or any public place will be committing an offence. In 1988, the Licensing (Amendment) Act included all pubs and clubs, as well as private homes, if there is alcohol being sold there.

Then, the Licensing Act of 2003 proclaimed that serving alcohol to those already under the influence of it is illegal, as well as purchasing alcohol for someone who is already drunk. Luckily, none of these laws are strictly adhered to by anyone.

10. Placing a postage stamp upside down (Treason Felony Act, 1848)

This one is actually a myth, or rather, a misinterpretation of a law stating that committing any acts with the intention to depose the ruling monarch would be considered treason. So, no, you will not get arrested, and your letter will be mailed even with the stamp posted the wrong way up.