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The Law

Everything on our website has been carefully and comprehensively checked by our team and we are certain every single product on this website is legal to buy and own in the UK.

By law you must be 18 or over to purchase a knife/sword. We take your placing of an order of confirmation that you are over 18, and we also age verify all orders.

Please note that just because an item is legal, and you are allowed to own it, that does NOT mean you are allowed to carry it in a public place. Some items can be carried in a public place, some cannot, and some can under certain circumstances but not in others. Please do your own research based on the item you want to carry, and where you want to carry it, before determining if that would be legal or not.

Our knowledge of the law only applies to the UK. If you intend on importing our goods to a foreign country you should make yourself fully aware of the laws of that country before attempting to do so.



Katana Laws

Updated March 2017

In April 2008 every curved sword with a blade in excess of 50cm was made illegal. This was called the ‘Samurai Ban’ or the ‘Katana Ban’ but in fact (intentionally or unintentionally is unclear) had a far more wide ranging impact making such things as cutlass and cavalry sabre’s illegal.

In August 2008 an amendment was passed which excluded swords that are handmade using traditional production techniques.

The basic effect of this was to remove cheap curved katana from the market. On our website all curved swords with a blade in excess of 50cm are handmade using traditional production techniques.



Knife Laws

Updated March 2017

Knife laws can seem incredibly complex so we have attempted to layout for you our understanding of the law in order to assist you in deciding what to purchase and what not to purchase. The following items are illegal in the UK.

Full Auto Knife

Common Use Names:
Flick Knife, Switchblade, Automatic Knife

Cited:
The Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act (1959)

Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.

Legal Definition:
Any knife which has a blade which opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring or other device in or attached to the handle of the knife.

Common Misconceptions:
Rolox actions, Speedsafe actions (commonly referred to as semi-automatic knives or ‘assisted openers’) are not full-auto knives. Whilst they open in a similar fashion, they do not meet the criteria of the Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act (1959), as the device required to be operated to deploy the blade is attached to the blade itself and is not in or attached to the handle of the knife OR in the case of assisted openers they are not a button opened by pressure, but the spring merely finishes the opening procedure after the significant first part is done by manual action.


EUROPEAN AUTOMATIC STILETTO
KNIFE, TYPICALLY OF GERMAN OR
ITALIAN ORIGIN


TRADITIONAL AUTOMATIC
KNIFE, TYPICALLY OF ITALIAN,
SOVIET, OR EASTERN-BLOCK
ORIGIN


AUTOMATIC OUT-THE-FRONT
(OTF) KNIFE, TYPICALLY OF ITALIAN
OR AMERICAN ORIGIN


MODERN FULL-AUTO AUTOMATIC
KNIFE, TYPICALLY OF GERMAN,
ITALIAN, AMERICAN, OR FAR
EASTERN ORIGIN

Gravity Knife

Common Use Names:
Paratrooper Knife
Cited:
The Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act (1959)
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
Any knife which has a blade which is released from the handle by the force of gravity or the application of centrifugal force.
Common Misconceptions:
This workable definition was adapted from the Monroe County, New York, USA statute, which goes further to state "When released, is locked in place by means of a button, spring, lever or other device". Although the stated act does not refer to this point it must be assumed that this is what is inferred.


LUFTWAFFE PARATROOPER
KNIFE, TYPICALLY OF GERMAN
ORIGIN


TRADITIONAL GERMAN GRAVITY
KNIFE, TYPICALLY OF GERMAN
ORIGIN

Stealth Knife

Common Use Names:
Airport Knife
Cited:
The Criminal Justice Act 1988 (Offensive Weapons) (Amendment) Order 2004
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
A knife or spike, which has a blade, or sharp point, made from a material that is not readily detectable by apparatus used for detecting metal and which is not designed for domestic use or for use in the processing, preparation or consumption of food, or as a toy.


COLD STEEL'S CAT TANTO IS
MADE FROM A SINGLE PIECE
OF HIGH-IMPACT RESISTANT
PLASTIC. IT LOOKS LIKE AN
ORDINARY KNIFE, BUT FEATURES
NO METAL COMPONENTS.


THIS COLD STEEL SPIKE IS ALSO
MANUFACTURED FROM A HIGH
IMPACT PLASTIC. HOWEVER,
SOME KNIFEMAKERS ALSO USE
OTHER MATERIALS, FOR
INSTANCE CERAMICS.

Disguised Knife

Common Use Names:
Hairbrush Dagger, Ink Pen Knife
Cited:
The Criminal Justice Act 1988 (Offensive Weapons) Order 2002
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
Any knife which has a concealed blade or concealed sharp point and is designed to appear to be an everyday object of a kind commonly carried on the person or in a handbag, briefcase, or other hand luggage (such as a comb, brush, writing instrument, cigarette lighter, key, lipstick or telephone.
Common Misconceptions:
Only knives deliberately intended to look like an everyday object fall under this category, so, for example, a sword with a hidden knife in the handle, is legal, because people are not making and buying this to sneak it in a nightclub. You would not get the sword in anyway!


THE INK-PEN KNIFE PULLS APART
TO REVEAL A SHARP BLADE.
TYPICALLY OF FAR-EASTERN
ORIGIN, BUT SOLD AROUND THE
WORLD AS NOVELTY ITEMS.


FROM THE OUTSIDE THIS KNIFE
LOOKS LIKE A LIPSTICK. ROTATE
THE BRASS COLOURED BARREL
TO EXTEND THE BLADE.
TYPICALLY OF FAR-EASTERN
ORIGIN, BUT SOLD AROUND THE
WORLD AS NOVELTY ITEMS.

Belt-Buckle Knife

Common Use Names:
None
Cited:
Criminal Justice Act 1988 / Statutory Instrument 1988 No. 2019
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
A buckle which incorporates or conceals a knife.
Common Misconceptions:
None


THIS BELT BUCKLE KNIFE IS A
SINGLE PIECE BUCKLE. BELT
BUCKLE KNIVES ARE ALMOST
EXCLUSIVELY AMERICAN IN
SOURCE, ALTHOUGH MANY ARE
MANUFACTURED IN THE FAR-EAST.
THEY HAVE A PARTICULAR
AFFILIATION WITH MOTOR-CYCLING
GROUPS IN AMERICA.


THIS AMERICAN MADE BELT
BUCKLE INCLUDES A FOLDING
LOCK KNIFE. BELT BUCKLE KNIVES
ARE OFTEN DECORATED.


THIS BELT BUCKLE KNIFE
INCLUDES A THROWING STAR.

Push Dagger

Common Use Names:
None
Cited:
Criminal Justice Act 1988 / Statutory Instrument 1988 No. 2019
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
A knife, the handle of which fits within a clenched fist, and the blade of which protrudes from between two fingers.
Common Misconceptions:
Certain utility knives designed specifically for the purpose of opening boxes or packaging materials, but the blade protrudes from between the thumb and the forefinger; not two fingers, would be legal.


THIS COLD STEEL SAFEKEEPER
IS THE TYPICAL PUSH DAGGER
SILHOUETTE. TYPICALLY OF
AMERICAN OR FAR-EASTERN IN
ORIGIN.


THIS IS AN AMERICAN MADE
MODERN PUSH DAGGER.

Balisong

Common Use Names:
Butterfly Knife
Cited:
Criminal Justice Act 1988 / Statutory Instrument 1988 No. 2019
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
A blade enclosed by its handle, which is designed to split down the middle, without the operation of a spring or other mechanical means, to reveal the blade.
Common Misconceptions:
Pentographic knives are not Butterfly Knives, but they do fully meet the description of a Butterfly Knife and one must assume that perhaps inadvertently or not, they are prohibited.


AMERICAN MADE BALISONG
BUTTERFLY KNIFE, TYPICALLY
OF FAR-EASTERN OR AMERICAN
ORIGIN.


THIS BALISONG KNIFE IS MADE
IN CHINA, BUT SOLD MAINLY
THROUGH USA RETAIL OUTLETS.
MOST OFTEN AVAILABLE FOR
SALE VIA THE INTERNET.

Sword Cane

Common Use Names:
Sword Stick
Cited:
Criminal Justice Act 1988 / Statutory Instrument 1988 No. 2019
Prohibits:
Manufacture, import, sale or hire, or offer of sale or hire, or lending or giving to any other person.
Legal Definition:
A hollow walking-stick or cane containing a blade which may be used as a sword.


SWORD CANES TYPICALLY FEATURE
ENGRAVED OR DECORATED
HANDLES. MANUFACTURED THE
WORLD OVER, INCLUDING MANY
BRITISH EXAMPLES MADE DURING
THE VICTORIAN ERA.


MODERN SWORD CANE FEATURES
A CROSS PATTERN BLADE AND
A PLAIN HANDLE.



Zombie Knives

As of Thursday 18th August 2016 Zombie knives are illegal in the UK. The amendment to the Criminal Justice Act 1988 will ban the sale, manufacture, rental or importation of knives often referred to as ‘zombie knives’, ‘zombie killer knives’ and ‘zombie slayer knives’.

The knives can have cutting blades of up to 25 inches, have a serrated edge and include images or words that glamorise violence.



YOUR KNIFE AND YOU

What You Can't Have ...
The following items are banned from sale within the UK... Switchblades, automatics or 'flick-knives', gravity knives, balisongs or 'butterfly knives', push daggers, belt buckle knives, sword canes, disguised knives, or knuckle-duster knives.

Late on in 2004, an amendment to the law was introduced which restricts the sale of any knife which is not readily detectable by the normal methods of detection, ie: either x-ray or metal detection, unless it can be proven that the knife's sole purpose is for the preparation of food. These knives are correctly referred to as Airport Knives, but in English law are commonly referred to as Stealth Knives.

In 2006, so-called Disguised Knives were prohibited. You may not buy any knife designed to look like something else, for instance a knife which appears to be a pen, (and it doesn't matter whether the pen works or not, it's still prohibited here).

What You Can Carry ...
The Criminal Justice Act (1988) says that you may carry a knife with a blade length of 3.0" or less so long as it is capable of folding. That means no fixed blade knives. But use your loaf - a knife has no place at a football match, in a pub, nightclub or school and becomes an offensive weapon in these circumstances in just the same way as a screwdriver, or any other inanimate tool.

Can I carry something bigger ...
If you wish to carry a larger knife then you must have 'reasonable cause'. That means that you must be able to prove that you had a genuine reason for carrying the knife.

You may carry a larger cutting tool if it is associated with your work (for instance a chef may carry a 9.0" butchers knife roll to and from work), or if it is associated with your sport, (for instance a fisherman may carry a 6.0" fillet knife, a hunter may carry a 12.0" fixed blade hunting knife, a camper may carry a 10" camping knife).

Don't forget it's there though. If the knife is still in your possession when you move onto a completely different task you may have difficulty explaining that.

The Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act (1959)
Prevents the use and sale of switchblades and automatic knives within Great Britain due to the violent and prevalent use by "Teddy Boys".

The Criminal Justice Act (1988)
Probably the most controversial piece of legislation to go through Parliament. Extends into all areas of modern life, although with regard to our subject matter, the Act outlaws the sale of certain knife categories. Amongst those included are belt buckle knives, push daggers, and other "so called" martial arts weapons.

Click Here to View The Act

The Offensive Weapons Act (1996)
Restricts the sales of certain types of knife to persons under the age of 16.

Click Here to View The Act

The Knives Act (1997)
The most recent law to affect knives in Great Britain effectively banned the sale of any knife suitable for combat. Although in theory this could mean literally ANY knife, the spirit of the law is there to protect us all. It's left "grey" enough to exercise a little self control for those clearly seeking a collectable path, yet shuts down any avenue for violent use.

Click Here to View The Act

PLEASE NOTE: THIS PAGE IS SUPPLIED FOR INFORMATION PURPOSES ONLY, AND REPRESENTS ONLY OUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE LAW. WE ARE NOT IN ANY WAY LEGALLY TRAINED NOR QUALIFIED IN ANY SUBJECT OF LAW, NOR DO WE CLAIM TO BE. THIS INFORMATION SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON FOR USE IN A COURT OF LAW AND AS SOME LAWS CAN BE CONSIDERED TO BE OPEN TO INTERPRETATION THIS IS SIMPLY OUR INTERPRETATION, AND NOT NECESSARILY THE INTERPRETATION OF THE POLICE OR A JUDGE,