Firearms dealers in Northern Ireland will be reopening on 12 June, following the Northern Ireland Executive’s announcement to ease Covid-19 restrictions to help bring the country out of lockdown.
The move follows the easing of travel and other restrictions, which means that outdoor activities such as target shooting, clay shooting and pest control can take place, in line with the continuing social distancing restrictions and guidance.
The British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) Northern Ireland director Tommy Mayne said: “BASC welcomes the Executive’s recent decision which is excellent news for dealers who’s businesses have suffered as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. I urge BASC members and the wider shooting community to support these all-important businesses going forward. However, when visiting a firearms dealer’s premises it is important to comply with social distancing and other requirements to help reduce the spread of the virus.”
As chair of the NI Assembly’s All-Party Group on Country Sports, Patsy McGlone MLA said: “I have been working closely with BASC and engaging with Police Service Northern Ireland (PSNI) to help ensure that Firearms and Explosives Branch (FEB) had the necessary resources in place to support dealers as they emerge from lockdown. Thankfully, PSNI have advised us yesterday that from Friday 12 June, they will once again be accepting one-off-one-on applications, so if you or a friend are thinking of upgrading a firearm then there is no better time to do it.”
BASC will continue to engage with PSNI and our political representatives to ensure that FEB are in a position to provide the full range of services to certificate holders, as lockdown restrictions are relaxed.