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Coronavirus (COVID-19): the policing response and what you need to know

Apply or renew a firearms licence

Anyone who owns or uses a firearm in the UK requires an appropriate licence or certificate from the police. Firearms and shotgun certificates are valid for five years, after which they will have to be renewed.


Due to the impact of Covid-19, there will be severe delays in managing grant applications for firearms and shotguns. This is because ALL grant applications require a home inspection and visit to your home.

Therefore we encourage you NOT to submit grant only applications at this time.

Any grant only applications will be placed in a holding area until we are able to manage the demand.

Online renewal applications will be dealt with.

BASC advice for shooters during COVID-19

Applying or renewing a licence

If you live in the Avon and Somerset area, you can apply for the grant or renewal of a firearms certificate by completing our online form.

Alternatively, you can download the PDF documents and return them with your payment and supporting information to Firearms Licensing.

If you want to apply for an explosives certificate, see licensing of explosives

What you need to include with your application


Your application must be supported by an endorsement from two people who have agreed to be a referee. The referees must:

  • be resident in Great Britain
  • have known you for at least two years
  • be of good character
  • not be a family relation

Photographic evidence

Your application must be supported by a passport photograph showing your current true likeness and signed by yourself.

Good reason

You must provide a good reason for possessing a section 1 firearms. For example:

  • Target shooting – you will need to provide details of the club of which you are a member
  • Quarry shooting – you will need to provide details of your permission to shoot over at least one piece of land

If you are not completing the online form, you will need to provide this information on the request for additional information form (PDF).

About the application process

Did you get my application?

We deal with a high number of renewals every month and are therefore unable to acknowledge individual applications.

If your application is complete, payment will be processed immediately.

All incomplete applications will be returned for your attention.

When will I receive my certificate?

Applications are dealt with in order of their expiry date. Certificates are renewed approximately 7-14 days before the expiry date to ensure you remain in lawful possession of your guns.

Will I receive an inspection visit?

Depending on current renewal procedures, you may not receive an inspection visit.

For more information on applying or renewing a firearms certificate, contact Firearms Licensing.


View firearms certificate and permit fees.

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