BASC is pleased that the government has added many positive amendments to the Policing and Crime Act 2017 which received Royal Assent today.
BASC has been involved with the Policing and Crime Bill since the start of its passage through Parliament last year.
Prior to that, the association worked with the Law Commission from 2014 and took part in its consultation on firearms law. The Law Commission’s report went on to become part of the Policing and Crime Bill. This represents two and a half years of intensive work for BASC’s dedicated firearms team.
Bill Harriman, BASC’s director of firearms, said: “We are pleased that the government has added many positive amendments to the Act.
“We welcome the firearms sections of the Act. In particular we are pleased to see common sense prevail over expanding ammunition, which will no longer be classed as prohibited. BASC has been campaigning for this since 1997. This provision is entirely sensible since the use of expanding ammunition is mandated (on ethical grounds) for hunting deer in all UK jurisdictions.
“The decision to create a legal definition for what constitutes an “antique firearm” will import much needed clarity and certainty into the Firearms Act 1968. BASC will continue to work with the Home Office to protect the interest of collectors as the details of the interpretative rules are finalised.
“The definition of ‘lethality’ provides similar certainty. The 1 joule level has been an informal threshold for many years and this merely enshrines that into law. It will not affect sporting air weapon users.
“The automatic extension of certificate life for timely applications on renewal is very valuable and I hope it will go a long way towards solving current police backlogs.
“We will continue to work closely with the Law Commission and the government and continue to advocate codification of firearms legislation.”
Peter Glenser, BASC Chairman and a barrister specialising in firearms law, said: “There will be little immediate change as most of the Act will involves Rules, or secondary legislation, which have yet to be drawn up.”