UK Knife Laws

Posted on January 08 2016

A great knife is an indispensable item for many EDC'ers. The right blade can be used for anything, from making kindling and splitting wood, to more challenging bushcraft and survival skills such as hunting and cooking food.

But do UK EDC'ers know what the law says about carrying knives in the UK?

– It is completely legal to carry a knife in the UK as long as it has a folding blade of no more than 3 inches long.
– It is illegal to use any knife in any aggressive way, regardless of the length of the blade.
– It's against the law to carry any knife with a locking blade (knives with blades that can be locked when unfolded) without a valid reason.


Be certain to understand your knife before going out in public. Remember, without common sense and knowing your equipment you’ll fail at the first obstacle.

Knives that are illegal:

– Flick Knives (also called ‘switchblades’) – is where the blade is hidden inside the grip and shoots out when a switch gets pushed
– Butterfly Knives – where the blade is concealed inside a handle that splits in two around it.
– Disguised Knives – e.g., where the blade is concealed inside a belt buckle.
– gravity knives
– sword-sticks
– samurai swords (with some exceptions)
– hand or foot-claws
– push daggers
– hollow kubotan (cylinder-shaped keychain) holding spikes
– shuriken (also known as ‘throwing stars’)
– kyoketsu-shoge (hook-knife connected to a cable, cord or wire)
– kusari (weight connected to a rope, cord or wire)

This is by no means a complete list of banned knives. Get in contact with your local police to check if a knife is illegal.


Carry Smarter.


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