So what self-defence items are legal in the U.K.? The real question should be, what items can be used as self-defence items in the U.K.? As there are no legal self-defence items as such in the U.K.
Now, as you know, it is legal to carry a folding knife whose blade does not exceed 3 inches or 7.62 CM in length, which does not lock at a place in the U.K., but if it is carried for the sole purpose of self-defence, it might act as a weapon which in turn would make it illegal to possess.
But the police force does recommend using a few items for self-defence. Take a look at a few of them.
Self-defence items that are legal in the UK
1. A torch
It can be pretty helpful in dark areas or investigating purposes, but interestingly enough, it can also be used for self-defence. Suppose you are walking down an empty, dark lane and someone attacks you; you possess no dangerous weapon but have a torch in your hand. Just point the torch into the attacker’s eyes; it will disorient the attacker for a few moments and will buy you time to run to a safer place.
This one item is possessed by almost every person walking down the street. Why not use it as a self-defence item? Just poke it onto some sensitive area of the attacker if you ever encounter one. Or even better, if you have your keys hanging down a chain, it will get easier to swing it around and hit the attacker.
3. A metal water bottle
What harm can a water bottle do to anyone? How can it be a self-defence item? Trust me; it can! Just grab it like a cricket bat, and swing it to the head of the attacker. I suggest head because people get disoriented when hit on the head. So go ahead and buy a metal water bottle if you don’t already have one.
4. An Umbrella
Be it on a rainy day or a sunny day, an umbrella always helps. But it can also serve another purpose as a self-defence item. If you want to use an umbrella as a self-defence item, I suggest you buy a robust and good quality umbrella, not a folding one. As the long umbrellas usually have a pointy head on the top, which can save you in situations. All you need to do is stab the attacker with the umbrella or hit them as hard as possible.
Most of us carry a pen in our pockets. They are the most accessible self-defence item as well. Similar to the things I mentioned above, even this has a pointy top. Just poke it anywhere on the attacker. It is a small thing but will hurt. So always keep a pen in your pocket.
6. A coin pouch
A coin pouch, when wholly filled, gets heavy and can work well enough as a self-defence item. Use the keychain on one end and swing it on the face of the person harming you. It’s strange, but yes, it works.
7. Panic alarm
This is something the police recommend you to carry with you. Whenever you feel like you could be harmed or someone is harming you. Just use this panic alarm. It doesn’t hurt the attacker but attracts the attention of everyone around you. This might also help the police nearby understand that someone needs help.
8. Steel toe cap boots
No one can stop you from owning a pair of steel toe cap boots. It will be by your side the whole time as you will be wearing one. You do not have to take it off. If you are threatened or being harmed by someone, kick the person’s shin with your strong steel toe cap boots, it will hurt.
It is illegal in The U.K. to carry any spray bottle that gives out harmful gases. This category also includes pepper spray. If you are found carrying pepper spray, you can go to prison for five years, though pepper spray is legal for law enforcement purposes when a riot breaks out or for crowd control. But we have some spray bottles that do not contain harmful gases but can still be used as a self-defence item. These include ;
9. Deodorant spray
This item can mesmerise people and burn their eyes if needed. If someone is attacking you, a deodorant spray can be used to blind them for a while. Meanwhile, you can run away.
10. Farb gel spray
This spray is 100% legal in The U.K. It contains a red dye, which, when sprayed on the attacker, will paint their face red and will help the police to identify them as a criminal and could have possibly caused some harm. This also foams up on the face, so the attacker will not see through it.
What if I hurt someone while defending myself?
It’s natural to defend yourself when attacked, but you need to prove that those actions were mandatory at the moment. If someone gets hurt while trying to protect yourself, the prosecution will file a case and try to find evidence that you were not defending yourself. If you have witnesses who saw you defending yourself or any other proof that the act was in self-defence, you will be proven not guilty. But if you were forceful, with a full intention, hurting someone, and witnesses confirm it, you will be found guilty.
When needed, it’s obligatory to take action to defend yourself. Carrying a weapon might get you in jail, so make use of all the things around or with you. Any small thing can be used as a self-defence item; there are no legal weapons for it in the U.K. The next time you leave your house, or if you feel unsafe in your home, please keep at least a few of the things mentioned above with you. Remember, you are not alone and everyone is here to help you. Stay alert and stay safe!