27 April 2022

Glue Traps (Offences) Bill passes third and final reading in England


The Bill to restrict glue trap use in England has passed its third and final reading in the House of Lords unopposed and with no amendments. 


This means that the Bill (available here) will now go for Royal Assent ahead of the Queen's speech, which is expected to be on Tuesday 10 May.

If the Bill does not get Royal Assent before the Queen's speech, then the whole process has to begin again, however at this stage that would be unlikely. 

What is Royal Assent? 

When a Bill has completed all its parliamentary stages in both Houses, it must have Royal Assent before it can become an Act of Parliament (law).

Royal Assent is the Monarch's agreement to make the Bill into an Act and is a formality. There is no set time period between the consideration of amendments to the Bill and Royal Assent.

Going forward

The Bill as it stands would make it an offence for a person to:

  1. Set a glue trap if the intention was to kill rodents or if they knew it could kill a rodent
  2. Allow or permit someone else to set the trap.

In addition, if a person passing saw such a trap and did nothing about it, this would also be an offence.

BPCA fought for an exemption for pest controllers, and this amendment remains in the Bill after its third reading in the House of Lords.

This will be managed through a licensing regime, although the details of that regime are yet to be decided. 

Ian Andrew, BPCA Chief Exec, commented: "We've already put our best foot forward and begun initial conversations with stakeholders ahead of the Bill becoming law.

"We'll be continuing those while the details of any glue trap licensing scheme are formed, as it's critical that pest management has a voice during the building of any new licensing system that affects our industry."

There is expected to be at least a two-year period between the Bill becoming law and when offences will apply, in order for a suitable licensing regime to be put in place. 

It's critical that pest management has a voice during the building of any new licensing system that affects our industry.

Ian Andrew, BPCA Chief Exec

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Lord Benyon, said:

"Government looked forward to working closely with animal welfare groups and pest control organisations to ensure that the licensing regime is appropriate and effective."

He noted that Government currently expected the public authority delegated with the licensing functions to be Natural England, as it already fulfilled this function for other licences relating to wildlife management, such as licences for bird control.

Devolved nations

All this applies only to England; the devolved Administrations have the power to work on this issue themselves and almost all have expressed an interest in doing so.  

Ian added: "We have had recent conversations with Government departments in Scotland and Northern Ireland on this matter, and while we have made a submission to the Welsh Minister for Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths MS, we are still awaiting a response.

"We'll keep an eye on the situation in the devolved nations and continue to update the industry as that progresses."


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