BASC believes 2016 is shaping up to be the busiest year ever for its specialist firearms licensing team.
In the first five months of the year, the team’s full-time staff provided assistance to an average of 781 telephone callers each month.
That figure is up almost 80 calls per month on 2015 while, last year, they fielded almost double the calls compared to when accurate records began in 2007.
BASC boasts the UK’s only full-time firearms team, with six staff providing expert help and advice to a membership of more than 144,500 on all aspects of firearms ownership.
Bill Harriman, BASC’s director of firearms, said: “The knowledge and experience possessed by our team is unrivalled. This telephone advice service is not replicated by other shooting or country organisations and is a unique benefit of membership.
“We would like to believe one of the reasons demand has grown to the levels we now see is that members who have been helped by our firearms team have spread the word. In a sense, we are victims of our own success. But we have no problem with that. We are here to provide a service and the volume of calls suggests we are very good at that. It is a service members value and we expect to go from strength to strength.”
The majority of calls for assistance relate to members’ interactions with their local police force. Most frequently, these concern delays in dealing with grants or renewals of certificates, the imposition of disproportionate conditions or restrictions and revocation or refusal of certificates.
The team deals with all aspects of firearms – technical, legal, practical or forensic – and offers confidential advice based on settled law or sustainable legal opinion. The team can also assist with accessing services available through BASC’s legal expenses insurance.
The firearms team can be reached on 01244 573010. For more details of its services, click here.