Bizarre British Laws ~ Strange But True

I’ve been meaning to write this post for a while now, as I think it’s such a fascinating and amusing insight into our British history and culture.

While gathering information about our annual Guy Fawkes Night, I discovered that alongside our many traditions, Britain also has many unusual and strange laws that were passed by Parliament many years ago and are still in effect to this day. With this in mind, I thought it would be rather interesting to share with you some of the more unusual and bizarre laws that I came across. I must admit, I found most of these quite unbelievable and rather amusing, however this just fuelled my eagerness in wanting to know more about the background and history of the reasons why these laws were passed through Parliament in the first place and it’s amazing to think that they are still in force today. I hope you find them as interesting and as funny as I did. I’m definitely guilty of breaking a couple of these laws, what about you?

It is an offence to beat or shake any carpet, rug or mat in the streets of the Metropolitan Police District, however you are allowed to shake a doormat before 8am.

It is an offence to be intoxicated and in charge of a cow, horse or steam engine.

It is illegal to die in the Houses of Parliament. (Not sure what the punishment would be for this offence.)

It is an act of treason to place a postage stamp bearing the British monarch upside-down on an envelope.

It is against the law to eat mince pies on Christmas Day in England.

It is illegal to handle salmon under suspicious circumstances.

In London, it is illegal to flag down a taxi if you have the plague.

It is against the law to be drunk in a pub. (Who knew).

It is illegal to enter the Houses of Parliament in a suit of armour.

It is against the law to carry a plank of wood down the street in London.

So next time you’re scoffing mince pies on the 25th of December or having one too many Babychams in your local boozer, think on, you may have to pay the consequences.

If you know of any strange or bizarre laws, please get in touch, I would love to hear about them.

Images reproduced from Pixabay.

The Cappuccino Diaries is a food, travel and lifestyle blog, please do get in touch if you would like to be featured.


  1. 3rd February 2017 / 2:03 am

    Oh my goodness, this is hilarious. Think most of the nation would be deemed criminals under these laws lol. Very interesting post.

    • The Cappuccino Diaries
      3rd February 2017 / 8:26 am

      Thanks so much for your comment. Yes absolutely, had a good laugh myself. Will have to think twice about a few things in the future lol.

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