gum ownership Gun ownership comes with many responsibilities.

You need to ensure that your shotgun/firearms certificate is up to date and that your gun is kept securely, according to the law.

You need to be fully aware of the shooting safety rules and follow the all-important shooting etiquette.

Make sure that your gun is safe for use by maintaining it well.

Gun laws change from time to time as new ruling is brought in and you need to be sure you are up to date with what is happening.

If you’re a novice, we have advice on buying your first gun, whether new or second-hand and making sure your gun mount is its best.

Read our articles here which cover the important aspects of gun ownerships, from how to buy a gun, how to apply for your shotgun licence and firearms certificate, the best way to keep your gun secure and the legalities.

leave a shotgun at a holiday home

Can I leave a shotgun at my holiday home?

Q: I have a shotgun licence, registered in London, and 
a number of shotguns kept at 
that registered address. I also 
have a holiday home, which has 
a clay ground nearby. Rather than keep transporting a gun to the holiday house I am keen to install 
a cabinet and leave…

shotgun in car

Can I go camping with my shotgun?

Should you keep your shotgun in the tent or your car? Q: I’m in the process of buying some woodland and I intend to do some shooting there. I also plan to spend a lot of time camping in the woods. Is it legal to leave my shotgun in the…

shooting and depression

As a shooter, should I have told my GP about my depression?

Some time ago, I suffered a bout of depression. I had recently lost my father and an old injury had flared up, meaning that I was having to take strong painkillers. There were other things as well — aren’t there always? — but equally there were many good things in…

alcohol, guns and the law

Alcohol, guns and the law

An alarming viral email was recently widely distributed among members of the shooting community. It alleged that shoots will be specifically targeted by police with breathalyser tests over the Christmas period and has resulted in the police and BASC reassuring shooters that this is not the case

testing gun cabinets

Would your gun cabinet pass the test?

A muscular man in the middle of the room swung a large hammer up over his head and brought it crashing down on a metal cabinet. It was not an ordinary Wednesday and Utah was not an ordinary destination for a Shooting Times assignment. Browning’s ProSteel gun 
cabinet factory sits…

shotguns for clay pigeon shooting

Is it legal to borrow or lend a gun?

Q: A friend is staying with 
me and will be using my gun 
on a formal shoot. He will not 
be bringing a shotgun. Can I lend him one and do we need a visitor’s permit or simply a letter from the shoot owner? A: Your friend can take advantage…

spring-powered airgun or a PCP

Should I buy a spring-powered airgun or a PCP?

Choosing the right airgun can present the newcomer with a minefield of choices, and picking a power source is usually the biggest quandary. For decades, spring-powered airguns were the only option but over the past 15 or so years, precharged pneumatics — often referred to as PCPs — have really…

How old to go shooting

How old do you need to be to go shooting?

I am applying for a shotgun certificate but am confused about the age you must be to go shooting by yourself. I'm 15 coming up 16 and have a keen interest in all country sports. I'd like to take up pigeon shooting as we have a pigeon problem on our

shotgun certificate applications

FAQs about shotgun certificate applications

Q. How much does a shotgun certificate cost and how long does it run for? A. A certificate is valid for five years, after which it must be renewed  if you wish to continue to possess shotguns. A new certificate costs £79.50 and renewal is £49. Q. How old do…

How to use your new gun safely

I forgot to tell the police about my new gun in time. Now what?

Q: I recently bought a new gun and forgot to inform the police within the required seven-day gun notification period to add it to my licence. I have now sent the police the required paperwork but it is six weeks since I bought the gun. Should I call the police…

gun cleaning tips

10 gun care tips every shooter should know

  Never neglect gun cleaning. A little effort will keep your guns safe, reliable and rust-free Do not put a gun in a gun slip into a gun safe. You want air movement Do not put a heater or a lightbulb in your gun safe. Your stock will over-dry, warm…

Shooters in Northern France

Is my UK shotgun certificate valid abroad? Or do I need more documents?

Q: I’ve been invited to shoot in France next season. Will my shotgun certificate be valid over there? You will need your SGC and also a European Firearms Pass which can be obtained at no cost from your local police. The airline/ferry/tunnel will want to know you are travelling with firearms.…