pair of Purdeys heirloom shotgun

What’s best? A family heirloom or a new shotgun?

Ben Samuelson chooses a family heirloom shotgun For the last 20 years I have shot with my late father’s 12 bore and, while I wish he was still using it, I wouldn’t dream of doing anything else. Firstly, I suppose I should point out that it doesn’t work terribly well. My father boxed for…

shotgun security

Firearms security

One of the most tragic events of 2016 was the murder of the MP, Jo Cox. She was shot with a sawn-off .22 rifle. Quite how the odious Thomas Mair came to be in possession of it is not known, but it is known that it was previously a lawfully held rifle that had been stolen. It…

Gun dealer

Should you always buy a gun from a dealer rather than privately?

A: I always think it is a good idea to buy a gun from a dealer rather than from a friend or private person’s advert. Admittedly you will be paying for the dealer’s profit, but this does at least give you the security of buying a gun whose state has been properly assessed and described. Also, if anything…

shooting at dusk

Is it legal for me and my friends to swap guns?

Peter Glenser replies: A: In short, yes absolutely. Assuming you both have valid shotgun certificates there is no reason at all why you shouldn’t do as you ask. The law allows a certificate holder to borrow a shotgun from another certificate holder for up to 72 hours without needing to…

12 bore shotguns

12 bore vs 16 bore – the great debate

12 Bore By Ben Samuelson Is there a smugger calibre than the 16 bore? Twenty is fine if you’re not strong enough to carry a real gun; 28 is acceptable if you wish to invite universal derision every time you miss a bird and .410 is delightfully mad – but 16 bore is just…

Cleaning a gun

The risks of a dirty gun

A shotgun is an investment that needs to be cared for to look beautiful, but also perform to its full potential. So where do you begin? Does it need to be cleaned after every outing or just when it’s starting to look a bit ropey? What products are best and ultimately, what’s the worst that can happen if a…

10 year shotgun firearms certificates drive

BASC: The case for ten year shotgun and firearms certificates

The renewal process can be one of the most frustrating times in a certificate holder’s life. All too often we hear of delays, temporary permits being issued, guns having to be lodged and – even worse – people being left in illegal possession of firearms. That is one reason BASC, in September last year, published a White Paper calling…

airgun

A year of change for laws on licensing firearms

First, in September 2015, came the report by Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary (HMIC) for England and Wales into the efficiency of the licensing system. It will come as no surprise to readers who have the misfortune to live in Essex, Gloucestershire, Thames Valley or Hampshire that HMIC found much to be desired in the way the police…

cleaning gun

How can I protect my guns in storage against rust?

Mike says: A thorough clean, followed by a wipe-down of the metal parts with a lightly-oiled cloth should be quite sufficient for guns in storage, providing your friend is going to examine your guns reasonably frequently. If the guns have chromed bores – and most modern guns have – there’s no need to leave the tubes…

travelling with shotgun

What’s the deal on insurance when you’re travelling with a shotgun?

A: Most gun owners utilise cover provided by their household insurance policies to insure their guns against risks such as damage or theft. Household policies will often have a schedule of named items covered for “all risks” while the items are away from the named property. Sporting equipment can usually be…

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…

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…

shotgun components

Shotgun jargon buster

It’s nice to look at old magazine adverts and think: “Wow, in 1904 I could’ve bought a best London gun for about £100, a good day’s wages today!” Back then, though, most folk didn’t earn that sort of money in a year. and things haven’t changed a century later. Today the average…

.17 hmr bolt-action rifle

How to get both a firearms and a shotgun certificate

Q: I would like to get a firearms certificate as well as a shotgun certificate. What will I have to do to obtain one? A: It’s not unlike the process you went through for your shotgun. You obtain the form, complete it and send it to your local police force…

Scales of Justice

Firearms law: the way forward

From the firearms point of view, 2015 was a busy year. The report of Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary into firearms licensing was released in September. To nobody’s surprise, it revealed serious shortcomings in the way the police manage the licensing process. Its publication coincided with a symposium held by the Law…

UK police officers

Firearms licensing 2015: the saints and sinners

In May 2013 the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC, but then called ACPO) asked Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) to undertake an inspection of firearms licensing in English and Welsh police forces. Given the timing of the request, there is little doubt it was heavily influenced by a series of…

clayshooting at CLA Game FAir

How you can improve your clayshooting at the CLA Game Fair 2015

Do you want to learn, compete, watch famous international Shots, have your gun checked or shop for new equipment? This year the Clay Line at the CLA Game Fair has been renamed the Shooting Line and it’s where you can enjoy demonstrations and try your hand at several competitions. Fancy…

shot gun certificate

Last chance to respond to gun licence fee consultation

Shooters have under a week to respond to the Home Office’s consultation on increasing gun licence fees, which closes on 29 December. The increases proposed in the consultation were calculated by an all party parliamentary working group in consultation with representatives of the shooting community from BASC and the British…