The use of snares in Britain is regulated under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. Under this Act it is an offence for a person:
to set a self-locking snare in such a way as to be calculated to cause bodily injury to any wild animal. (Section 11(1)(a).) to kill or take any wild animal using a self-locking snare. (Section 11(1)(b).)
to set a snare (or other article) in such a way as to be calculated to cause bodily injury to any animal listed in Schedule 6 of the Act (e.g., a badger). (Section 11(2)(a).)
to kill or take any animal listed in Schedule 6 of the Act (e.g., a badger) using a snare. (Section 11(2)(b).)
who sets a snare to fail to inspect that snare (or have someone else inspect it) at least once every day. (Section 11(3)(b).)
to set any type of snare unless they are an 'authorised person' under the Act (that is, the owner or occupier of the land on which the snare is set, any person authorised by the owner or occupier of the land, or a person authorised in writing by the Local Authority for the area. (Section 27(1).)
to possess a snare for the purpose of committing any of the above offences. (Section 18(2).)
To sum up, the use of self-locking snares, the setting of any type of snare in places where they are likely to catch badgers, failure to inspect snares on a daily basis, and setting snares on land without permission, are all offences under the Wildlife and Countryside Act.