1. It’s illegal to carry planks of wood along a pavement unless there is the intention of it being unloaded from a vehicle
The Metropolitan Police Act says, “A plank of wood must not be carried along a pavement. It can only be moved if it is being unloaded from a vehicle or taken into a building.” This law dates back to medieval times when carts were often overloaded and the wood would fall off, posing a danger to pedestrians.
2. Flying a Kite in a public place is technically illegal
In what might be considered a normal activity in the Summer, such as flying a kite in a public place, it may come as a big surprise that this is actually illegal. This law was brought in to prevent there being common nuisances and danger to local passengers, as mentioned by the Metropolitan Police Act 1839, section 54.
3. You Cannot gamble in a library
Gambling is illegal in any library in the United Kingdom, as it is considered a public place. The library offences act was put into place as gambling can be a very disruptive activity and it would be difficult for people to concentrate on their studies or reading if there was gambling going on around them.
4. Taxis can’t transport rabid dogs and drivers have an obligation to ask passengers if they have smallpox or the plagues
It’s an absolute no-brainer that rabid dogs or corpses cannot be transported because of health and safety regulations! The Public Health Act 1936 declares that taxi drivers have an obligation to ask their passengers if they have the plague or smallpox too.
5. It is rumoured that placing a postage stamp bearing the monarch’s head upside down is treason
At number 5 in our list of the UK’s weird laws, Under the Treason Felony Act of 1848, it is an offence to “place any mark upon His Majesty’s coin or currency with intent to deface the same”. There were rumours that if you placed a stamp upside down, that would be treason because of the perception of dishonouring the monarchy’s image. However, this myth has been proven not to be true and even via Royal Mail, it is still acceptable to place stamps upside down on letters.
6. You cannot walk cows down the street in daylight in England
According to the Metropolitan Streets Act of 1867, which arises from the Metropolitan Police District, it is illegal to drive any cattle through the streets during the specific hours of 10 am until 7 pm, unless somebody had specific permission from the Police Commissioner. This law prohibits “any person driving or conducting cattle in contravention of this section shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding ten shillings for each head of cattle so driven or conducted”