Trespass Law

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28DL Regular User
Regular User
Apr 23, 2012
Unless you're a registered locksmith, being outside your house with picks definitely falls within the realms of going equipped for burglary.

All the hobbyist forums will tell you this though -

I guess you're right about intent. Not sure what their common sense would make of an explorer all in black at 3 in the morning though
Last edited:


Got Epic?
Staff member
Nov 15, 2005
Suffolk / Birmingham
Stick with the actual use of them. Simply carrying them adds an extra element, the element of 'intent'. You can carry lock-picks if you can prove intent to use them for a lawful purpose (locksmith for example). Its the same with FB keys no doubt but having either on an explore is clearly showing intent to use them to pick a lock or in the case of FBs, unlock a lock you dont own.

Like i said, it depends on the legal precedent. That is why carrying lock picks (or indeed using them) is deemed 'illegal' by most. It has gone before the courts before, people have picked the locks of places before , got caught, its ended up in court and they have been convicted of burglary probably without much other evidence. This is what you are up against. If there is no legal precedent and no one has ever gone to court for accessing somewhere with an FB key before then it would probably either never go to court at all because they cant be sure of a conviction OR go to court and they would make there decision there and then. Its your gamble.

Its an important concept to understand when it comes to law. People like to think of laws as cast iron things that are written down and set in stone but they rarely are, it depends what has happened in the past and if it hasn't happened in the past then the court decides on the fly. Its not really possible to sit here and say 'yeh you can do that' or 'no you will end up in jail' for a lot of the activities we get up to.

and there ends my totally unqualified legal advice..

Explorer X

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Oct 20, 2017
What if you trespass on a site on a regular basis and are told to leave by the police every time? Is this still a civil offence? Or can the land owner sue you in this matter?


Obsessed with BS7671
Regular User
Aug 6, 2008
What if you trespass on a site on a regular basis and are told to leave by the police every time? Is this still a civil offence? Or can the land owner sue you in this matter?
The land owner could apply for an exclusion order but I don't really get why you would want to serial trespass anyway. Maybe if you thought you had a right of way but for a bit of UE? Maybe for that perfect picture :D


Explore and love the adventure
Jan 15, 2017
Also being found in an enclosed premisses that could be being found behind heras fencing on a site or pallisade the police can arrest you for that and take u for questioning this luckily does not happen much.

So sometimes the im a urbexer civil trespass talk wont always work if they do you for inclosed

Mike Stiles

28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Jun 5, 2013
Hi there!

I just moved here in UK from Europe, and quite new to the UK law. I have acquired a set of firebrigade master keys which I intend to use for rooftopping on council estates, does anyone know how the law is about it? I guess pretty illegal, but hope nothing more that civil trespass.

Did you ever find out whether or not using these keys is illegal? I have a set myself but have always been a bit reluctant to use them on the off chance I can be arrested for entering what's was technically a locked building.


Where'd the floor go?
28DL Full Member
Sep 11, 2015
Twisting Nether
Read my post. There is no way to say if it is legal/illegal. Its certainly dodgey tho!
If you haven't been granted explicit permission to use the keys, then you are trespassing (no need to go over that one again, I'm sure). The law gets tricky around the keys though, you could be seen as Going Equipped under s.25 Theft Act (1968) if you do not have permission to use the keys, as you are located in a place with tools to gain entry to a dwelling that isn't yours, for which you have no definite reason for possessing. (Up to 3 years imprisonment, although with the lack of prisons, you'll probably be tickled twice and subjected to a hug-a-hippie course)

Once on the property, make sure nothing falls into your pockets, or you can come a cropper straight away, as it turns simple trespass into Burglary.

I also wouldn't plan on GBH to any person inside, or it's another Burglary charge for you (and GBH to boot if the CPS don't like you).

To be honest, I wouldn't use any keys that I had acquired, you're on really thin ice from the word go.
Likes: Mike Stiles


Got Epic?
Staff member
Nov 15, 2005
Suffolk / Birmingham
It's the same situation at the end of the day. You won't find a law specifically about drain keys.

That said I think they are going to be less dodgey than FB. FB locks are just that, a lock, to lock things. A manhole isn't really a lock, not explicitly anyway. A prosecutor may argue otherwise tho.

Like I say it comes down to president. Same for ropes, ladders or big springs stuck to your soles to jump over really high fences.. All tools that could be used in a burglary..
Likes: WelshMoocher

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