back to article Tesco slaps cutlery ban on under-18s

We're delighted to report this morning that supermarket monolith Tesco - famous for its cut-price Xbox 360 offer - is doing its bit to combat the degeneration of Blighty into a lawless land a la Democratic Republic of Congo in which rival bands of jenkem-crazed hoodies battle each other in the smouldering ruins of UK society. …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    I can imagine it now...

    ..."Hello Mr Hoodie, please will you sign for this cutlery"

    "Wot?? Naah, *fork* off"

  2. Matt Horrocks


    Surely kids wanting to go on an attack spree armed with a fork or knife (those knives couldnt even cut butter they're so blunt anyway) would nick said cutlery from the drawer at home - or from the canteen at school - rather than buy new?


  3. Paul Lakin


    Tesco stores have long had such restrictions. As I understand it, the Criminal Justice Act 1998 states:

    It is an offence for any person to sell to a person under the age of 16 any knife, knife blade, razor blade, axe or any other article which has a blade or is sharply pointed and which is made or adapted for causing injury to the person.

    Granted, that probably doesnt include cutlery, but there is no harm in taking the precaution. I think in stores they do have the warnings posted up, but regardless the cashiers check (try buying some at self service). I think it just gets less coverage because they are not covered by the "Think 21" scheme, so few people get ID'd.

  4. CharleyBoy

    Why is this news?

    Notices have been up to this effect on any item containing a knife - of any description sice the law changed.

    Frankly I feel sorry for the teenagers. I had to start to shave when I was leaving my thirteenth year (not every day, but it was necessary). If I was of that age now I wouldn't be able to even BUY a pack of safety razors. You know, those packs of really expensive extruded plastic with tiny, tiny slithers of metal that last about two shaves before you have to landfill them. What do they think people are going to do, smash fifty of them and glue them to a stick or something? Hell, half an hour with a nail file(metal obviously) and a sturdy rock and you have a knife blade of some lethality. Attach a decent handle and your away.

    I used to do this as a kid using my back door step. Admittedly, the worst thing I ever did was to serious maul some sticks with my wittling attempts (look, pointy stick!). Ban all nail care product now I say! Who knows how they may be used!

  5. Michael Compton


    You can join the army go to war

    Have a Family

    But god help u if u want to have something to eat ur dinner with

  6. Edwin

    That's OK can always pick up the 46-piece set and share it with your mates:

  7. Andy

    More amsuing age verification

    I bought a bottle of Jack Daniel's BBQ sauce instore at a Tescos self-service till. The till prompted for my age to be verified :)

    It's good sauce but I'd hate to try and get drunk on it!

  8. Anonymous Coward

    Easy solution

    Just pinch it from your parent's cutlery drawer, you hooded swine!

  9. Richard Rae
    Black Helicopters


    This is a good stance, but there are still a number of pointy / sharp objects that can be used from the criminal (or practical mind) is easily available... lets see

    - screwdriver

    - copper pipe (stamp on the end, or hit with stone for pointy edge)

    - stone used above

    - nice thick branch, use the road to sharpen it, works a treat, and has helped me cook fish in the past on the fire.

    - tent peg

    - road sign, the nice pointy ones going left (bit extreme, but can be used)

    - keys, especially those nice long ones, go straight through

    But on the other hand, we can let them kill each other, that would decrease the hoodie population and do us all a favor by reduce the amount of benefits that are paid out to these rejects, and reduce the crime rate in the long run.

    Another one along the ‘funny’ vein, you are not allowed to take sharp objects on planes, but look by the emergency exit, nice axe isn’t it.

  10. Ben Parkinson

    why bother with cutlery?

    There's nothing to stop the hooded vermin from buying a pack of dishwasher safe pint glasses and glassing each others faces off down the park!

  11. Ash

    If I wanted a knife...

    ... i'd pick one up and walk out.

    Think those security nerds at the front desk will stop you? Half of them can barely manage to change the camera they're watching without dribbling.

  12. Martyn

    And it applies to plastic knives in store.

    Tesco refused to sell my 14yo daughter & her friend a set of plastic knives which they wanted to buy for a picnic 'cos they were under age - they ended up getting one of their teachers who was in the shop to buy them, he'll probably end up in chokey for it.

  13. Peter Knapp

    No Easy Solution

    Do you think the average Chav knows where the parents cutlery drawer is, surely they eat with their hands!

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    its always amazed me that you can have sex aged 16 but you can't watch other people having it until your 18...

  15. Spleen


    So if you're sixteen and have left school and moved out to live on your own (or with others your age), you have to eat with your hands because you can't buy cutlery.

    This is probably fortunate for you, however, because if you did buy a set of kitchen knives you could be locked up for a minimum of five years if the police decide to stop you while you're carrying them home.

    Labour Government is doing very well in its quest to make everyone criminals so that everyone can be arrested (and will be afraid of being arrested) if they don't fit well with Gordon Brown's Age of Change.

  16. Nick


    Don't you have to be 18 to have a credit card and therefore shop online anyway?

  17. W

    Illegal gardening action!

    I bought a garden spade (+ a garden fork, a hand fork, and a trowel) from Homebase and got asked for ID!

    I'm 28!

  18. Andy

    The end of the world

    It will keep the unemployed figures down as all those who leave school at 16 starve trying to open shrink wrapped food without knives.

  19. Ross Ryles

    That's not a knife!

    They've had this policy in store for months. I bought a cheap set of 5 teaspoons (about as offensive as a banana) and went through the self serve checkout. It wouldn't let me buy them until someone came and verified I was over 18. The examples you have in your article at least include knives. Reminds me of an episode of the Simpsons:

    "That's not a knife. *This* is a knife!"

    "That's not a knife. That's a spoon!"

    "Oh. I see you've played knifey, spoony before."

  20. Spleen


    The Solo and Visa Electron debit cards are available to under 18s. Not all retailers (online and offline) accept them but some do.

  21. TeeCee Gold badge


    Aha! So you've never fallen for the old trick while somewhat inder the unfluence of being invited to compete at a friendly, traditional game of "spoons" then?

    Tip: If there's an iron ladle hanging innocently on the wall of the pub you're sat in at the time, leave.

  22. Terry
    Dead Vulture


    "hoodies battle each other in the smouldering ruins of UK society."

    Couldn't that apply to most of the Earth's surface area???

    (Notwithstanding Brazil of course, which is the smouldering ruins of Portuguese society. Although at least they didn't have as far to fall.)

  23. Dom

    Oh FFS.

    The law says "has a blade or is sharply pointed **AND** which is made or adapted for causing injury to the person".

    And yes there is harm in taking the precaution. It's another erosion of our liberties. It's another example of a retail chain deciding on who it's going to sell stuff to.

  24. anthony bingham

    Sharpen your finger nails!

    I thought that under 18s eat with their fingers anyway ... Tesco have agreed to sell only "handy" foodstuffs and things to lap-up as a contribution to the Security of this great nation ( the bull shit is Organic and always warm!)

  25. mahoney

    cutlery possession with the intent to sell

    Everyone knows the most potent silverware comes from the back of a van, in a dark alley, in the bad part of town.

  26. Mike Moyle

    Paging the Blue Rajah...

    ...Would the Blue Rajah please come to Customer Service...?

  27. Simon Reed
    Paris Hilton

    Spunking it again

    There it is AGAIN: "... making off with their pensions and spunking the lot on alcopops and gangsta ringtones."

    What is this 'spunking' verb El Reg keeps using? Who on Earth tosses themselves off with a table fork? Is the implication here that adolescents can't be trusted with a steak knife for fear of self-abuse of the joy-gloy-making variety?

    I'd just managed to forget yesterday's spunk reference with regard to burgers and was thinking I was safe with cutlery but no - it gets everywhere.


  28. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Simple Alternative

    Why bother with a knife. Get a standard BIC ball point. You can do a LOT of damage with one of those. If you are really nasty, take out the refil and crush the end.

  29. Mr Larrington


    Thank you, I feel better now.

  30. Alistair MacRae

    ID for beer

    I went into Tesco last weekend to buy some beer and they ID'd me! I'm 22!

    Anyway it wouldn't be so bad if it didn't say ALCOHOLE FREE in big red letters.

    Don't know what would have happened if I didn't have my Drivers Licence with me

    *shakes head*

  31. Brett Furfie

    Big wow

    Asda has had an age restriction on under 18s for nine months now... This is just another example of Tesco promoting none news to make it look like they're the first fuckers to do it...

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Paul Larkin: Feel for the apprentice tradesmen....

    "Granted, that probably doesnt include cutlery, but there is no harm in taking the precaution."

    Apprentice tradesmen are unable to buy tools when laws like this are overinterpreted.

    In fact, I recently read a story from one 17-year-old apprentice saying that he wasn't allowed to carry his own tools, so he often left them in the works van, and they got stolen quite frequently, and he couldn't buy new ones himself, and his colleagues were too busy to take the time out to buy them for him. If the works van broke down or the driver was sick, he lost a day's work because either his tools were in the van or they were in the house but he wasn't allowed to take them into the street.

    All in all, whether this was the law or an overinterpretation of the law, he lost a lot of money (time=money) due to this.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    ID for computer game

    One of my friends was IDed in Tesco for a Computer Game ages 3+. He was 21 and wasn't impressed...

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Cutlery Attacks

    Reminds me of the Flight of the Conchords song "Think About it"

    "Well, at the end of your life, you are lucky if you die

    Sometimes I wonder why I would even try

    Why try

    I saw a man lying on the street half dead

    He had knives and forks sticking out of his leg

    He said, Ahh ahh ahh ahhhhhhhhwww

    Can somebody get the knife and fork out of my leg, please

    Ooh, could somebody please remove these cutleries from my knees "

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