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Grants and variations freeze - have you been affected?

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Following lockdowns in March, most police forces were unable to accept first-time grant applications and variations due to the impact of COVID-19 on officer and staff functions. However, most police forces continued to process renewals, albeit with time delays in many cases. 

BASC works with firearms licensing departments to ensure their service is effective and efficient. As COVID-19 restrictions have eased, BASC has been urging police forces to resume all firearms licensing services as soon as possible to reduce the backlogs that have been building up since March. We do not want to see anyone with an interest in shooting disadvantaged.

However, we are aware of eight out of 43 constabulary areas that are not processing applications for the grant of a shotgun or firearm certificate, nor are they processing applications for the variation of a certificate.

If you have been disadvantaged by a licensing department not processing an application for a grant or variation please email me at conor.ogorman@basc.org.uk with a short summary of your experience. We will use this to ensure that departments provide a better service.

The police forces currently not processing applications for grants or variations are:

  • South Wales Police
  • Avon & Somerset
  • Gloucestershire
  • Northamptonshire
  • Northumbria 
  • Nottinghamshire
  • Staffordshire
  • West Midlands
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it’s been 8 months since my father sent in his grant paperwork and we haven’t heard a squeak apart from them calling the referees and that was 6 months ago, they said they didn’t need to come check the safes as he is sharing mine (fair enough) so I don’t know what’s now taking so long. I’ve also had two variations in this time...

Thanks Avon and Somerset

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Hi Andy just got my 22-250 and my 243 both with mods have not brought anything yet  but they have not stated how much ammo on my licence. Asked them to up my 22lr ammo from 600 to 1200 but as not a member of gun club yet  would not approve the  increase said to contact them when a member.  Only done seven trips to club  plus the one i meet you and the gun training morning so will just wait till it open's again. Hope you are OK and  how is the escort going i am still trying to get some new perm's . 

Was told about a possible deer shoot but still waiting to hear but don't worry all ready had you ear marked as soon as i hear anything



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  • 2 weeks later...

And 20 days early as well, the guy was really pleasant and guess it was a simple renewal so box ticking exercise.  Had to get the doctors form done but that was the only bit that took the time at my end. Once I had it and submitted the application I couldn’t believe how quick it came through

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Northumbria have been excellent throughout the lockdown and during the whole Covid episode so far. Completed a 1 for 1 variation for me withing 3 days and also cleared land for calibre with 3 days too. I certainly can't complain about them.

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  • 1 month later...
On 24/10/2020 at 12:14, Rewulf said:

Nottingham say they will restart doing variations and grants in January.
Been like this for a few months, I need a new mod for my .223 and a variation for 6.5CM , come January the backlog will be ridiculous.

Yep I've already filled my variation form in, dated 1/1/21 and I'll pop it in postbox new years eve. 

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