Firearms and Travelling to the Republic of Ireland following a No-Deal Brexit - 15/10/2019
In the event that the United Kingdom leaves the European Union on 31st October without a ratified withdrawal agreement, there will be some implications in relation to the Republic of Ireland and licenced firearms. Further information and links to application forms are available on the website of the Republic of Ireland Department of Justice and Equality here.
General Licences for Wild Birds - 12/09/2019
The Department for Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has recently launched a user survey aimed at gathering views and evidence from people affected by the use of general licences for control of certain species of wild birds, in specific circumstances.
Further information on the use of general licences can be found here.
The survey can be found here.
Offensive Weapons Act 2019 - 20/05/2019
We have been notified by the Home Office that the above act was passed on 16 May 2019 and is applicable to firearms with actions know as "Manually-Actuated Release System (MARS)" and "Lever Release".
The prohibitions, with effect 16 May 2019, prohibit the manufacture, sale, transfer or acquisition of such weapons. The prohibition on possession will come into force at a later date, following the completion of the surrender and compensation arrangements (see below).
The 2019 act adds two new subsections to section 5 of the Firearms Act 1968. For certain rapid-firing rifles there is a new subesction 5(1)(ag) which prohibits:
- Any rifle with a chamber from which empty cartridge cases are extracted using -
- Energy from a propellant gas, or
- Energy imparted to a spring or other energy storage device by propellant gas,
- Other than a rifle which is chambered for .22 rim-fire cartridges
For "Bump Stocks" there is a new subsection 5(1)(ba) which prohibits:
- Any device (commonly known as a bump stock) which is designed or adapted so that -
- It is capable of forming part of or being added to a self-loading lethal barrelled weapon (as defined in section 57(1b) and (2a)
- If it forms part of or is added to such weapon, it increases the rate of fire of the weapon by using the recoil from the weapon to generate repeated pressure on the trigger
Compensation and Surrender Arrangements
Section 56 to 59 of the 2019 Act sets out the surrender and compensation arrangements which must be followed before the prohibition on the possession of the above weapons can come into force. The arrangements are subject to secondary legislation before they can come into force.
Details on the arrangements for applying for compensation will be published in due course. These details will include who can apply for compensation, how they can apply, timescales for applications, what information owners need to supply to evidence ownership and surrender arrangements.
We will update our webpage accordingly when we have further information.
Licences for the Killing of Wild Birds - Update - 17/05/2019
As you may be aware, Natural England has now re-issued general licences for the killing of certain bird species for specific purposes. These include Carrion Crow to prevent serious damage to livestock, Wood Pigeon to prevent serious damage to crops and Canada Geese for public health and safety.
You are encouraged to read these licences to ensure that you are covered by them. The killing of other species and for other purposes may require you to apply for an individual licence.
Please refer to the Natural England Website for the latest information. The website can be found here.