You should not use the hard shoulder in darkness or when visibility is reduced, as there may be unseen obstacles or unprotected road users there. Do not use the hard shoulder before right-hand turns, hilltops or other places where your view is obscured either.
Unless you are turning right, you should also avoid using the hard shoulder before junctions. This is to avoid confusing drivers who are about to enter the junction. They might believe that your position indicates that you are about to turn right, meaning they may drive out in front of you.