An interactive map shows the hotspots of a radioactive gas in East Lancashire which is colourless, odourless and tasteless.

Radon is a radioactive gas that undetectable unless you have specialist equipment.

It is formed from uranium in rocks and soil and can make its way into buildings built on top of this land.

Public Health England (PHE) state that every building contains radon but the levels are usually low.

It only poses a risk to health when found in large quantities and after long-term exposure.

Why is it a risk?

The Public Health England website states that radon causes over 1,100 deaths from lung cancer each year in the UK.

Anything radioactive has potential to cause damage to our health, especially in large quantities.

Radiation is a form of energy and can cause damage in living tissues increasing the risk of cancer.

According to Public Health England, Radon can increase your risk of lung cancer- with this risk increasing with higher radon levels and longer exposure times.

The risk from radon is higher if the person is an ex-smoker and significantly greater for current smokers.

Lancashire areas with the highest radon affected areas

Public Health England defines radon affected areas as those with 1% chance or more of a house having a radon concentration at or above the Action Level of 200 Bq m-3.

They have created an interactive map detailing where high levels of radon are more likely and the estimated percentage of homes in an area which are above the radon Action Level.

The chances of a higher level of radon depend on the type of ground.

If you are in a 'high risk' area, it doesn't necessairily mean that your house has excessively high radon levels- but you can order a measurement pack to check. 

PHE said: “The darker the colour the greater the chance of a higher level.

“The chance is less than one home in a hundred in the white areas and greater than one in three in the darkest areas.”


Lancashire Telegraph:


Some Blackburn areas are in an band of “elevated radon potential” of 1-3 per cent which is classed as a ‘medium’ risk.


Lancashire Telegraph:

Most areas in and around Burnley seem clear with less than 1% risk of radon potential.


Lancashire Telegraph:

While some areas of Darwen are in the lowest risk category- the majority of areas are in the 1-3 percent radon potential band which is classed as a medium risk.

Ribble Valley

Lancashire Telegraph:

In the Ribble Valley radon risk levels range from 1 per cent to 30 per cent.

Many areas of Clitheroe are in the ‘high risk’ category (10-30% maximum radon potential).


Lancashire Telegraph:

Many areas of the Hyndburn district are ‘low risk’ and a radon test isn’t advised by Public Health England.

Accrington and Oswaldtwistle are in 'low risk' areas.

Some patches of Great Harwood are classed as low/medium risk.


Lancashire Telegraph:

Areas in Pendle are a mixed bag when it comes to radon levels.

Colne and Nelson are classed as medium risk areas with 1-5 per cent maximum radon potential.

However, areas in and around Barnoldswick are in the medium/high risk bands where maximum radon potential is 10-30 per cent.


Lancashire Telegraph:

In the outlying areas of Rossendale, the radon levels are a ‘low risk’.

However, many areas of Bacup are classed as ‘medium risk.’ (5-10 per cent of radon potential).

The Haslingden and Rawtenstall areas are still ‘medium risk’ but the maximum radon potential is smaller (3-5 per cent)

How to reduce risk

  • Find out if you live in a radon risk area
  • If you do, measure your home
  • If the radon is high, reduce it
  • If you smoke, give up

How can I carry out a test of my home?

Public Health England offer Home Measurement Packs to check the levels over a three-month period.

They can be purchased at the following website:

To check if your area has a high risk of Radon, use the  map here: