New simplified firearms forms welcomed
A new form designed to simply the firearms application process has been welcomed by the UK’s largest shooting organisation, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation.
Under the current system, renewing coterminous certificates means completing four separate forms, with the same details repeated time and time again, an issue which has frustrated association members for many years.
The new procedure introduced by the Home Office, which comes in on December 1, will include only one form for grants and renewals. There will be a small separate form for anyone wanting to vary their firearm certificate.
Other benefits to be introduced include the removal of the requirement for a professionally-qualified counter signatory.
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This means applicants will no longer need to approach a person such as an MP or doctor to sign their shotgun certificate but will be able to use a suitable person who has known them for more than two years, and who is not a family member, registered firearms dealer or police employee.
Ammunition requirements have also been simplified. Under the new system it will no longer be mandatory to declare how much ammunition can be bought, only how much can be possessed.
Mike Eveleigh, senior firearms officer at the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC), said: “BASC has worked with the police and Home Office for over eight years in an attempt to simplify and refine the forms and while they are not perfect in our eyes, they are a great improvement over the previous forms.
“They are a genuine attempt to simplify the process and we would like to thank all the BASC members who voted and helped with the development.”