BASC has welcomed an announcement by Lincolnshire Police that it plans to go live with an online licensing system before the end of the year.

BASC’s firearms team attended a demonstration of the force’s new computerised grant and renewal system for firearm and shotgun certificates. The system will operate alongside the current paper-based process.

Lincolnshire is the first force in England and Wales to introduce such a system and they expect it will reduce the waiting time for renewals by at least two weeks.

Paul Dale, BASC’s firearms team manager,  said: “Lincolnshire is to be congratulated for looking for ways of streamlining the application and renewal process. We welcome any initiative that brings an improved service to our members.

“We would urge Lincolnshire Police to be mindful of people in rural areas who are without adequate broadband. It is important that provisions remain in place for those who do not have ready access to the internet or who may not be entirely proficient with computers. Those who may be less tech-savvy should not be disadvantaged.”

Applicants using the new system will still be required to print the front and back page of the application / renewal form and provide a ‘wet signature’ and a photograph to comply with current firearms legislation.

Garry Doolan

Garry Doolan is BASC’s deputy director of communications and public affairs. He has more than 20 years experience of journalism and the media. He joined the organisation in 2016 and is a keen shooter and beater, with his springer spaniel Quincy.

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