PEOPLE wanting to dispose of knives can do so without fear of prosecution next week.

Devon and Cornwall Police is holding an amnesty from Tuesday, September 18, until Friday, September 21. Some police front offices will also be open on Saturday, September 22.

Members of the public can dispose of unwanted knives and other bladed items without facing any action.

Knives of any description can be disposed of including illegal “zombie” knives and swords, kitchen knives, illegal lock knives, unwanted collectibles, replicas and ceremonial items.

The police force is supporting a national week of action instigated as part of the ongoing Home Office Operation Sceptre, which has the national aims of combating knife crime and raising awareness about it.

Most police enquiry offices which are open to the public will have collection bins in which members of the public can deposit items anonymously.

In Cornwall these are located at Bodmin, Tollgate Road; St Austell, Palace Road, and Camborne, South Terrace. They are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.

More details on opening hours and locations can be found at

Superintendent Matt Lawler, Local Policing Commander for Exeter, East and Mid Devon, said: “Here in Devon and Cornwall we do not have the extent of knife crime reported in some major metropolitan areas of the country.

“However we are supporting this week's national knife amnesty as part of our ongoing local approach to focussing upon prevention, as any knife taken out of circulation and off the street helps to prevent injuries and deaths.

“Carrying a knife or bladed article is not only illegal, but incredibly dangerous.

“Our message is therefore simple: No good can come from carrying a knife.”

As well as responding to reports of someone carrying a knife, police officers proactively use their powers to search where information or intelligence indicates it is necessary.

In the first six months of 2018, 226 proactive stop-searches were recorded as primarily looking for weapons. This is up from 193 for the same period in 2017.

Some 32 arrests were made as a result and a further 26 searches resulted in action being taken for other offences or items being found.

Devon and Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner, Alison Hernandez, said: “There is absolutely no reason why people should be carrying knives.

“This amnesty gives people the chance to think carefully about whether they want to carry a weapon that would land them with a serious penalty if they were caught with it and inflict devastating injuries if used.

“I’d urge anyone who carries a knife as a weapon to take advantage of this opportunity to dispose of it safely.”

The maximum penalty for an adult carrying a knife is four years in prison and an unlimited fine.

A prison sentence will be handed to anyone convicted of carrying a knife more than once.

Guidance on basic laws on knives, banned knives and weapons and legitimate reasons for carrying a knife can be found on the Government’s website -

Advice for young people aged 11-14 about carrying weapons can be found at