Poisons Act 1972

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1972 c. 66


Poisons Act 1972

1972 CHAPTER 66

An Act to consolidate certain enactments relating topoisons.

[9th August 1972]

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

S-1 Poisons Board.

1 Poisons Board.

(1) There shall continue to be an advisory committee, called the Poisons Board, which shall be constituted in accordance with the provisions of Schedule 1 to this Act.

(2) The procedure of the Poisons Board shall (subject to any regulations made by the Board with the approval of the Secretary of State) be such as the Board may determine.

S-2 Poisons List.

2 Poisons List.

(1) The list of substances treated as poisons for the purposes of the Pharmacy and Poisons Act 1933 shall continue to have effect for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The Secretary of State may from time to time, after consultation with or on the recommendation of the Poisons Board, by order amend or vary the list referred to in subsection (1) above as he thinks proper; and in this Act the list as in force for the time being is referred to as ‘the Poisons List’.

(3) The Poisons List shall be divided into two parts, as follows—

Part I shall consist of those substances which, where they are non-medicinal poisons, are by virtue and subject to the provisions of this Act to be prohibited from being sold except by a person lawfully conducting a retail pharmacy business;

Part II shall consist of those substances which, where they are non-medicinal poisons, are by virtue and subject to the provisions of this Act to be prohibited from being sold except by a person lawfully conducting a retail pharmacy business or by a person whose name is entered in a local authority's list.

(4) In determining the distribution of poisons as between Part I and Part II of the Poisons List, regard shall be had to the desirability of restricting Part II to articles which are in common use, or likely to come into common use, for purposes other than the treatment of human ailments, and which it is reasonably necessary to include in Part II if the public are to have adequate facilities for obtaining them.

S-3 Regulation of sale of poisons.

3 Regulation of sale of poisons.

(1) Subject to the provisions of this Act, it shall not be lawful—

(a ) for a person to sell any non-medicinal poison which is a substance included in Part I of the Poisons List, unless—

(i) he is a person lawfully conducting a retail pharmacy business, and

(ii) the sale is effected on premises which are a registered pharmacy, and

(iii) the sale is effected by, or under the supervision of, a pharmacist;

(b ) for a person to sell any non-medicinal poison which is a substance included in Part II of the Poisons List, unless—

(i) he is a person lawfully conducting a retail pharmacy business and the sale is effected on premises which are a registered pharmacy, or

(ii) his name is entered in a local authority's list in respect of the premises on which the poison is sold;

(c ) for a person to sell any non-medicinal poison, whether it is a substance included in Part I or in Part II of the Poisons List, unless the container of the poison is labelled in the prescribed manner—

(i) with the name of the poison, and

(ii) in the case of a preparation which contains a poison as one of its ingredients, with the prescribed particulars as to the proportion which the poison contained in the preparation bears to the total ingredients, and

(iii) with the word ‘poison’ or other prescribed indication of the character of the article, and

(iv) with the name of the seller of the poison and the address of the premises on which it is sold.

(2) Subject to the provisions of this Act—

(a ) it shall not be lawful to sell any non-medicinal poison which is a substance included in Part I of the Poisons List to any person unless that person is either—

(i) certified in writing in the prescribed manner by a person authorised by the Poisons Rule to give a certificate for the purposes of this section, or

(ii) known by the seller or by a pharmacist in the employment of the seller at the premises where the sale is effected,

to be a person to whom the poison may properly be sold;

(b ) the seller of any such poison shall not deliver it until—

(i)he has made or caused to be made an entry in a book to be kept for that purpose stating in the prescribed form the date of the sale, the name and address of the purchaser and of the person (if any) by whom the certificate required under paragraph (a ) above was given, the name and quantity of the article sold, and the purposes for which it is stated by the purchaser to be required, and

(ii) the purchaser has signed the entry.

(3) Subject to the provisions of this Act, it shall not be lawful for a non-medicinal poison to be exposed for sale in, or to be offered for sale by means of, an automatic machine.

S-4 Exclusion of sales by wholesale and certain other sales.

4 Exclusion of sales by wholesale and certain other sales.

4. Except as provided by the Poisons Rules, nothing in subsections (1) and (2) of section 3 of this Act shall extend to interfere with—

a ) the sale of poisons by way of wholesale dealing;
b ) the sale of poisons to be exported to purchasers outside the United Kingdom;
c ) the sale of an article to a doctor, dentist, veterinary surgeon or veterinary practitioner for the purpose of his profession;
d ) the sale of an article for use in or in connection with any hospital, infirmary, dispensary or similar institution approved by an order, whether general or special, of the Secretary of State; or
e ) the sale of an article by a person carrying on a business in the course of which poisons are regularly sold either by way of wholesale dealing or for use by the purchasers in their trade or business to—

(i) a person who requires the article for the purpose of his trade or business, or

(ii) a person who requires the article for the purpose of enabling him to comply with any requirements made by or in pursuance of any enactment with respect to the medical treatment of persons employed by him in any trade or business carried on by him, or

(iii) a government department or an officer of the Crown requiring the article for the purposes of the public service, or any local authority (whether a local authority as defined in this Act or not) requiring the article in connection with the exercise by the authority of any statutory powers, or

(iv) a person or institution concerned with scientific education or research, if the article is required for the purposes of that education or research.

S-5 Lists of persons entitled to sell poisons in Part II of Poisons List.

5 Lists of persons entitled to sell poisons in Part II of Poisons List.

(1) Every local authority shall keep for the purposes of this Act a list of persons as being persons entitled, on premises in respect of which their names are entered in the list, to sell non-medicinal poisons which are substances included in Part II of the Poisons List.

(2) Subject to the provisions of this Act, a local authority shall enter in the list kept by the authority under this section the name of any person who, having premises in the area of the authority, makes an application to the authority in the prescribed form to have his name entered in the list in respect of those premises.

(3) A local authority may refuse to enter in, or may remove from, the list kept by the authority under this section the name of any person who fails to pay the prescribed fees, or who in the opinion of the authority is, for any sufficient reason relating either to him personally or to his premises, not fit to be on the list.

(4) If any person is aggrieved by the refusal of a local authority to enter his name in the list kept by the authority under this section or by the removal under this section of his name from the list, he may appeal against the refusal or removal to the Crown Court.

(5) In this section, ‘relating to him personally’ means, in relation to a body corporate, relating personally to the members of the board, or to the managers or other officers of the body corporate.

(6) In the application of this section to Scotland—

(a ) an appeal under subsection (4) shall be made in accordance with Act of Sederunt to the sheriff within whose jurisdiction the appellant's place of business is situate;

(b ) subsection (5) shall have effect as if the references to a body corporate included references to a firm, and, in relation to a firm, as if the reference to the members of the board were a reference to the partners.

S-6 Supplementary provisions as to local authorities' lists.

6 Supplementary provisions as to local authorities' lists.

(1) A local authority's list shall—

(a ) include particulars of the premises in respect of which the name of any person is entered in the list;

(b ) subject to paragraph (a ) above, be in such form as may be prescribed; and

(c ) be open at all reasonable times to the inspection of any person without fee.

(2) A person whose name is entered in a local authority's list shall pay to the local authority such fees as may be prescribed in respect of—

(a ) the entry of his name in the list,

(b ) the making of any alteration in the list in relation to the premises in respect of which his name...

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