BPCA news archive

28 April 2022

Glue Traps (Offences) Bill receives Royal Assent - what does this mean for pest management?


New legislation restricting glue trap use in England became law after receiving the go-ahead from the monarch, alongside several other animal health and welfare bills. 


The Glue Traps (Offences) Bill, the Animals (Penalty Notices) Bill and the Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill all received Royal Assent today, as part of a package of measures by the Government to increase protections for wildlife, pets and livestock. 

This means that they are now all Acts of Parliament, enforced in all areas of the UK where they are applicable.

Welcoming the Royal Assent of the Glue Traps (Offences) Bill, Jane Stevenson, MP for Wolverhampton North East, said:

"I am absolutely thrilled that my Glue Traps Bill has been granted Royal Assent, meaning it has now become law.

"The banning of the use of glue traps by the general public is another step forward in the strengthening of animal welfare legislation in England, and I want to thank everyone involved in making this happen."

What does this mean for pest management professionals?

The Glue Traps (Offences) Act will ensure licences to use glue traps are only issued to professional pest controllers on "an exceptional basis", to preserve public health or safety where there is no suitable alternative.

Licence holders would then need to follow conditions set out in the licence to ensure the welfare of any rodents is upheld, such as regular monitoring of set traps.

This means those found to have used a trap without a licence could face up to six months in prison and/or an unlimited fine. The ban will come into force in the next two years.

Do I have to stop using glue traps immediately? 

No, you can continue to use glue traps during the two-year lead-in period set out by the Government, during which the licensing scheme will be created and rolled out. BPCA will keep professionals updated regarding this. 

Remember, if you carry out treatment involving glue boards, make sure you use them in accordance with the Pest Management Alliance Code of Best Practice on Humane Use of Glue Boards.

What will the conditions of a glue traps licence be?

The details of the licensing scheme have yet to be decided and BPCA will be engaging with stakeholders wherever possible, in order to make sure that the system is workable. 

Dee Ward-Thompson, BPCA's Head of Technical, commented:

“The reason we require the use of glue boards is for the rapid control of infestations on sensitive sites, like hospital wards and care homes.

“If licences need to be issued on a case-by-case basis, then this could render glue boards useless too.

“We've already begun initial conversations with Defra and Natural England on what a licensing scheme could look like.

“We’ll keep you updated with how these talks go."

Further animal welfare legislation

Alongside the Glue Traps (Offences) Act, two other pieces of legislation were created for the purpose of protecting animals and increasing punishments for offenders. 

Under the Animals (Penalty Notices) Act, introduced by Andrew Rosindell, people who fail to properly care for their pets, zoo animals and livestock could face fines of up to £5,000.

Under this new legislation, fines could be handed out by enforcement authorities to pet breeders who fail to microchip puppies before being rehomed, horse owners tethering their animal in a way that neglects their basic needs or a farmer transporting livestock that are not fit for travel.

In addition, the Government’s Animal Welfare (Sentience) Bill has today also gained Royal Assent.

This will create a new Animal Sentience Committee made up of experts from within the field.

This committee will hold government to account on how well their decisions have taken account of the welfare of sentient animals, publishing reports that Ministers need to respond to in Parliament.

These three acts are all part of the Government's Action Plan for Animal Welfare.


Every single user of glue boards should be aware of how to use them responsibly.

Take a look at the following resources available to all pest professionals:

Source: Online