Scales of Justice

Wondering how to get your shotgun licence or firearms certificate? How to store your gun and how to transport it?

Here are the answers to your questions.

 

shotgun in car

Can I keep a shotgun in my mum’s house?

David says: You need to raise the matter with your licensing department. Somehow I don’t think they’d be happy with such an arrangement. Personally I wouldn’t be too worried about transporting your gun to and from Devon provided you take the standard precautions when the gun is in the car. Another possibility would be for your Mum to get…

pile of paper

Firearms licensing in the Thames Valley

“What we know from experience is that widespread use of these [Section 7 permits] places an additional administrative demand on the Licensing Department which far from resolving the problem for our licence holders ultimately exacerbates it.” That’s from a letter sent to me by Assistant Chief Constable (ACC) Andy Taylor, writing with the advice of the licensing manager Zoey Evans, in February…

shotgun in car boot

Gun security in your car – your responsibilities

Now that the season is fully under way, I think that a timely reminder about gun security in your car would not go amiss. I’m told by my colleague, Detective Chief Superintendent Jo Chilton of the National Ballistic Intelligence Service, that there have been targeted thefts of shotguns in the North West. Certificate holders are responsible people and…

deerstalkers with deer

Lords pass “very helpful” changes to firearms laws

Shooting organisations have welcomed two improvements to firearms law passed last week by the House of Lords and adopted by the Government as amendments to the Policing and Crime Bill. The first of these changes permits an eight-week extension to the life of a firearms certificate so long as renewal documents were submitted eight weeks ahead of its expiry date.…

Air rifle certificate deadline

Scottish owners have 50 days left to apply for air gun certificate

Scottish air gun owners are being reminded that from today they have 50 days left to apply for a certificate to ensure that they can keep their weapons when the new laws come into force on 31 December 2016, if they have not yet received a decision on their application.…

firearms licensing system

The firearms licensing system could do better

In September 2015 HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) published its report into the efficiency and effectiveness of the firearms licensing system. It had the infelicitous title “Targeting the Risk” which rather suggests that legitimate firearms owners are a problem – we aren’t. Moreover it later goes on to talk about its recommendations “all of which are designed to protect the…

GP with patient

British Medical Association makes U-turn on licence fees

The British Medical Association (BMA) has advised GPs not to provide shooters’ medical information to the police without a fee and suggested that it is acceptable to withhold the service on ethical grounds. The new encoded reminder system was introduced in April. It requires GPs to provide the police with any information suggesting an applicant should not be in…

Man with gun and shot rabbit

Knee-jerk legislation dropped from EU Firearms Directive

A revised set of amendments to the EU Firearms Directive has been drafted, removing some of those proposals that had been criticised as unnecessary restrictions on lawful gun owners. Following the terrorist attacks in Paris last year, the European Commission brought forward plans to tighten gun laws, including a ban on semi-automatic .22 rimfires and new age limitations, despite a…

Aeroplane

Travelling with your gun

If you’re going to be shooting abroad with your shotgun or rifle then you need to plan ahead. As usual, this is largely because you’re going to have to apply and receive the documents that will let you transport your guns legally. European Firearms Pass If you want to take…

air rifle

Own an airgun? Planning on visiting Scotland?

  A:  The Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Act 2015 comes into force on 1 January 2017. After that date, a visitor to Scotland who wants to bring his or her air weapon with them must apply to the Chief Constable of Police Scotland for a visitor permit and will have…

air rifle

Shooters decry airgun licence fee

The Scottish Government has finally confirmed that the new airgun licence fee will be £72 for new applications. Visitor permits will be £20, while there will be a £5 charge for existing shotgun and firearm certificate holders. Shooting organisations, which opposed the introduction of the new legislation, have once again voiced concerns. “While…

Scottish air gun licensing

Airgun licensing campaign is inadequate, warns BASC

 BASC says the Scottish  Government’s new campaign to raise awareness about the licensing of airguns is inadequate, amid concerns that individuals could unwittingly become criminals by possessing forgotten airguns. From 31 December, it will be an offence to use, possess, purchase or acquire an airgun in Scotland without holding the new…

keys to gun cabinet

Can my wife use my gun cabinet for her shotguns?

A: Every firearm and shotgun certificate carries a statutory condition which states that: “(a) The firearms and ammunition [or shotguns] to which the certificate relates must at all times (except in the circumstances set out in paragraph (b) below) be stored securely so as to prevent so far as is reasonably…

Police and Crime Commissioner

Quiz Police and Crime Commissioner candidates on shooting views, urges BASC

BASC is giving firearms owners the opportunity to find out what candidates in the upcoming Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) elections think about shooting. The elections are taking place on Thursday, 5 May and candidates are voted in by the public at polling stations. As BASC explains: “These elections are of…

shotgun cartridges

EU tables more “irrelevant” Firearms Directive proposals

Shooting organisations have expressed concern that further “draconian” amendments to the EU Firearms Directive have been tabled by the European Council, despite a number of MEPs already agreeing that existing proposals are “rushed” and “irrelevant”. Plans to tighten European gun laws were brought forward by the European Commission following the terrorist attacks in…

Firearm licensing service

Poor police force firearms licensing service revealed

“We found examples of good practice, but these were the exception.” This is from the conclusions drawn by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) in its September 2015 report on firearms licensing. You may be lucky to live in an area where good practice is the norm, but it is more…

New medical monitoring for firearms and shotgun licence holders

The new system, led by the Home Office, will make it much more straightforward for GPs to alert police licensing departments if a medical condition is going to affect the certificate holder’s suitability to possess firearms. The condition can also be flagged up during the period the certificate is valid.…

police car on land

Conditions on firearms certificates

I’m the one with the sharpened pencil who gets called in when victims of the licensing system can’t get any sense out of their local lot. That should not happen, but I’m afraid that all too often it does, despite agreed conditions, despite circulars from the Firearms and Explosives Licensing Working…

shotgun

BASC blasts Kent firearms boss

Police firearms licensing departments have faced renewed criticism, five months after Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary report was released. Kent Police, in particular, has come under severe criticism from BASC, which said that Police and Crime Commissioner Ann Barnes did not understand the role the police play in firearms licensing…