We have received the following message from the Home Office.
We will advise as soon as further information is available. As previously mentioned we have requested a reasonable transition period during which arrangements can be made once the S I is signed and becomes law.
“The Antique Firearms Regulations were approved by the House of Commons on 14 December and by the House of Lords yesterday. The next step will be to bring the regulations into effect, along with the transitional arrangements for licensing those firearms which will cease to be exempt as antiques. We would normally do this quite quickly but on this occasion we will need to consider with Ministers the implications of the current national covid lockdown, which might necessitate a short delay. We will update you on the commencement date and transitional arrangements (including section 7 applications) as soon as we know more.”
Studying the Official Journal of the EU during the final days of 2020 we failed to see anything connected with the EU Lead in Wetlands Regulation. BSSC checked with FACE Brussels yesterday for confirmation, and the following from FACE UK seems to confirm that while shooting has not enjoyed an easy start in 2021, we have at least avoided any new EU restrictions regarding lead shot and wetlands.
“The European Parliament has not yet published the lead shot over wetlands restriction in the official journal which is seemingly good news for UK shooters as the restriction should now not apply to us.”
FYI Lead shot is already prohibited in UK for wild fowling over wetlands (note that the prohibition different in the four nations). The specific point mentioned above is regarding a definition of “temporary wetlands”, boundary definition and carrying lead shot (reverse burden of proof).
If this had gone through lead shot might have been prohibited on any temporary wetland which might have included a clay ground or range,
I have received the following message from Reg Curtis, Bill’s son.
Sad news indeed. Many of us knew Bill well. I have already sent condolences to Reg Curtis from HBSA.
Any members wishing to donate to a charity in Bill’s memory may do so to Blind Veterans UK.
“It is with deep regret that I write to inform you that my father, Bill (William) Curtis passed away on 4 January 2021. He died peacefully in Leominster Community Hospital having eventually succumbed to old age. Despite testing positive for coronavirus on Christmas Day the virus only brought forward his demise by a few days/weeks.
My Mother has asked for a private cremation for family only.
If anyone wishes to contact my mother or I, please feel welcome to email email@example.com”
on behalf of the late;
W. S. Curtis, A.C.I.I.,
Vice President, Crimean War Research Society,
Asst. Curator, Museum of the NRA (GB)
As you probably all know, Bisley has move onto Tier 4 covid restrictions.
This means we are unable to run the shoot on January 20th as the rule of 6 no longer applies.
So: January 20th Midweek Cancelled
Things not looking good for the early part of this year, however, I will keep you posted if we are allowed to run anything. Individual shooting is still possible.
A happy new year to all !!!
Members will have seen my earlier notice and link regarding the surrender of Mars and Lever release rifles.
Here is a further note prepared by David Penn for A & A Society which may be of assistance to our members with items mentioned.
Offensive Weapons Act: Surrender of newly-prohibited weapons.
You should download the ‘Home Office Offensive Weapons Act 2019: surrender and compensation scheme for certain firearms and offensive weapons Guidance for surrender and claiming compensation’. The link is: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/offensive-weapons-act-surrender-and-compensation-scheme
Note: for weapons other than firearms this Act applies only to England and Wales. Separate measures will apply to Scotland and Northern Ireland
The surrender period for weapons will run from the 10th
December to the 9th
March 2021. Those in possession of such weapons should dispose of them before the 9th
of March or run the risk of a prison sentence.
The focus has been on procedures for the surrender of modern centrefire rifles of the ‘MARS’ and ‘Lever Release’ types, but a number of weapons that are not firearms, for instance ‘flick’ knives (which have been re-defined to include knives that can be opened through a mechanism not in the handle itself) are also banned. Hitherto, simple possession of such weapons was legal but sale or transfer was not. In addition to flick and gravity knives, possession of the following weapons is now banned: Knuckleduster, swordstick, handclaw, belt buckle knife, push dagger, a sword with a curved blade of 50 centimetres or over in length: a baton (a straight, side-handled or friction-lock truncheon}, a ’disguised knife’ (a concealed blade or point and designed to appear to be an everyday object carried on the person, such as a comb], a ‘hollow kubotan, a shuriken (death star), a ‘balisong’ (butterfly knife), a telescopic truncheon, a blowpipe, a ‘kusari gama’ (a length of rope, cord, wire or chain fastened at one end to a sickle), a ‘kyoketsu shoge’ as above but fastened to a hooked knife. A ‘manrikigusari’ as above with each end of the rope etc fastened to a hard weight or hand grip. Also banned are ‘Zombie’ knives [a blade with a cutting edge, a serrated edge and images or words suggesting that it be used for violence) and ‘spiral’ or ‘cyclone knives’ (a handle, a blade with two or more cutting edges, each of which forms a helix and a sharp point).
Where necessary these weapons are defined in detail in ‘Guidance’.
A number of defences set out in Section 141 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 will continue to apply to the new offence of possession in private under the new Section 141(1A) of that act:
(i) Possession is for the purposes of functions carried out on behalf of the Crown or of a visiting force.
(ii) Where the weapon is one of historical importance
(iii) Where it’s in a person’s possession in their capacity as the operator of, or as a person acting on behalf of, a museum or gallery.
(iv) Where possession is for educational purposes only.
(v) Where possession is for the purpose only of making the weapon available for the purposes of theatrical performances and the production of films and television programmes.
Further defences are provided for in the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (Offensive Weapons) Order 1988, which leave the collector of bladed weapons in the same position as he has been since 1988.
(i) Antiques are exempt from the order and it is therefore not an offence to possess these weapons if they are antique-manufacture more than 100 years ago.
(ii) It is a defence to possess swords described in the Order if:
(a) it is shown that the weapon was made before 1954 or was made at any other time according to the traditional methods of making swords by hand.
(b) It is shown that possession is for religious reasons or for the purpose of making the weapon available for the purposes of use in religious ceremonies for religious reasons.
(c) It shown that possession is for the purposes only of making the weapon available for, or participating in, a permitted activity-i.e. a historical re-enactment or sporting activity.
(d) (Da) the person in possession is Sikh and possession is for the purpose only of presenting to another person at a religious ceremony or other ceremonial event
Defences in (d) above ensure the act of ceremonial gifting of the Sikh kirpan can lawfully occur.
Strenuous efforts were made in negotiations to extend the exemption for flick knives and gravity knives manufactured up to 1945, but these failed in the House of Lords.
Part H of the Guidance (page 30), is the claims form which deals with compensation. Each of the newly-prohibited weapons listed above is assigned a value. You have the following options:
A: Surrender the weapon (s) but make no compensation claim. You are obliged to submit the form, whether or not you seek compensation.
B. Surrender and claim compensation, accepting the Home Office’s valuations (e.g. £20 for a flick knife, £12 for a sword stick. The Home Office will not consider a claim for less than £30.
C. Surrender but provide your own valuation with reasons and evidence where available.
D. Donate to a museum or gallery. If you decide to go this route, you should start your discussions as soon as possible. In many museums acquisitions are subject to an Acquisitions Committee procedure which may not be quick. You would have only until the 9th
March to make the handover. Most museums are in straitened financial circumstances and have shed staff.
Each police force will create its own surrender procedure, so the easiest approach is to check its website. An alternative would be to contact its firearms licencing office. The Guidance includes a list of police stations nominated to receive weapons to be surrendered.
DJP 13/12/2020, amended 22/12/2020
The European Federation for Hunting and Conservation (FACE) is working with REACHLaw to understand the socio-economic impacts of a ban on lead in ammunition for Europe’s hunters and sports shooters.
FACE is conducting a survey across Europe, including UK, to establish how many firearms are used for hunting and target shooting, and how many of these will be suitable/not suitable for non-lead ammunition, in advance of the launch of the European Chemical & Health Agency (ECHA) Annex XV dossier on a proposal ( see https://echa.europa.eu/hot-topics/lead-in-shot-bullets-and-fishing-weights
) to ban or restrict lead in ammunition.
This proposal will be published in mid-January 2021 and a new EU regulation could be in place by 2023. The results of FACE’s study will be important to highlight the socio-economic implications of a potential ban on the use of lead in ammunition in Europe.
If you go either or both hunting or sports shooting, please complete the short survey. No personal information will be collected in this survey and your answers are completely anonymous.
The survey is now open and will be running until the end of January. It is important that as many individual replies as possible are received. The weblink can be found at:-
As I have reported, we have already responded to ECHA themselves and discussed exemptions for historic arms, other firearms where there is no viable alternative and for shooting on ranges.
This survey is another important facet of the information being submitted to the EU.
Whatever law may be passed in EU the UK will still be potentially affected in various ways.
Please complete the survey as soon as possible and thank you in advance for your help
The late David Franklin-Johnson is to be cremated in Brighton on Friday 18th December 2020.
David, well known to many members, joined the HBSA in 2002. He had been active as a Council member for some years, as well as serving as our Treasurer. He was a dealer, especially in historic arms, and a founder of our Junior Members section.
The ceremony is to be a relatively short one and personal access is limited due to current covid restrictions.
For those wishing to participate, a live stream will take place. Please find the details below of how to log in.
Service order for David Franklin-Johnson
Service Date 18-Dec-20 at 12:30
Service Chapel South Chapel – Woodvale
Webcast: Live Webcast
Charitable donations in lieu of flowers to Movember UK https://uk.movember.com
Any donation that you kindly make can either be made directly or via the funeral home.
Thanks and best wishes
Latest news for owners of these items.
Full details have just been released by the Home Office and all the relevant information and paperwork can be found at:-
However please note the message below from the Metropolitan Police who state:
“Please do not bring these firearms, bumps stocks or ancillary items to any Police Station.”
They will make the necessary arrangements with you to collect the firearm.
Any members outside the Met area should contact their FLD regarding arrangements for surrender.
*** Message from the Metropolitan Police***
The surrender for the Offensive Weapons Act has now started and runs until 9th March 2021. During this time you can surrender the firearms prohibited by this Act, bump stocks and certain ancillary equipment.
During this period the Home Office will compensate you for the items surrendered provided that you owned or contracted to acquire the firearm on or before 20 June 2018, with entitlement to have that firearm in your possession by virtue of a firearm certificate held by you or by virtue of being a registered firearms dealer.
Following this period possession of the firearms and items defined within the Act will be a criminal offence.
If you live within the Metropolitan Police District the Firearms Enquiry Team will make contact with you to arrange an appointment to collect your items. Please do not bring these firearms, bumps stocks or ancillary items to any Police Station.
In order to claim compensation for your item(s), you will first need to download, or request from the Home Office, and complete the Offensive Weapons Act Surrender and Compensation Scheme Claim Form.
This must be fully completed and submitted to us at the time you surrender your items.
For further guidance and full details please see GOV.uk
Following the enforced cancellation of this years Charity Rook & Reindeer shoot, all of the entrants agreed to donate their entry fees to Macmillan Cancer Support. A fantastic sum of £150 was donated by 12 individuals, shooters and sponsors.
I would like to thank all those involved for their support, I am sure that the charity will make good use of the money in what has been a very difficult year.
We will be holding a replacement shoot as soon as possible in the New Year. Possibly with Covid targets instead of the usual Corvid (Rook) and Rabbits.
Booking details etc to follow when a date has been confirmed.