BASC has welcomed the approach to reduce licensing delays taken by the West Mercia/Warwickshire police firearms licensing alliance together with Philip Seccombe, the Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner.
Nine new staff have been employed to help clear the current backlog of applications and to reduce delays in 2017, including four extra case workers and two extra firearms enquiry officers.
Delays in the licensing process have been an ongoing issue across many forces in the UK and accounted for more than 1100 calls to BASC’s dedicated firearms team in 2016.
Mike Eveleigh, BASC senior firearms officer, said: “BASC’s firearms team is increasingly invited to serve on firearms licensing Independent Advisory Groups (IAGs), which are seen by many police forces as a valuable resource. In this role, BASC is often considered a “critical friend.”
“We have already seen these relationships bear fruit and we are hoping to work with more forces during 2017 to help improve the situation for both the police and our members.”
Peter Glenser, BASC chairman and a barrister who specialises in firearms law, said: “This is great news. We just hope that more forces will follow suit so we are not spending the rest of the year talking about delays, as we did in 2016.”