Countryside Alliance reveals true scale of licensing woes

21 April 2016 – The Countryside Alliance has revealed the full scale of inefficiency in firearms licensing departments nationwide after a series of Freedom of Information requests.

The data shows the number of section 7 temporary permits issued by police forces in the years 2010-2015.

Top of the table for section 7 permits is Essex Police, which issued a staggering 5,200 permits during 2015. Close behind is Kent Police, with 3,000 permits on issue that year, and Thames Valley, with 2,500.

On the flip side, both Cleveland and Derbyshire Police claimed not to have issued any section 7 permits – in Cleveland’s case they haven’t issued any since a one-off in 2011, while Derbyshire issued one in 2012 and two in the year after.

Section 7 permits are mostly issued to cover two sets of circumstances. The first is when a certificate holder dies and his estate needs permission to possess his firearms so they can be sold on. The other is when a certificate under renewal has expired without the police having issued a new one.

Broadly speaking, the number of section 7 permits issued reflects the force’s ability to operate efficiently by renewing firearm and shotgun certificates on time. The more permits issued, the less efficient the force.

The data can be viewed on the Countryside Alliance website. UK Shooting News will be doing some statistical analysis of the figures in due course.

30 police forces responded to the Countryside alliance, meaning 13 of the 43 police forces in England and Wales either refused to reply or simply did not reply at all. The CA advises shooters whose local force is not listed in the table to contact the police directly.


3 thoughts on “Countryside Alliance reveals true scale of licensing woes

  1. Andy J

    On the other hand, one of our club members who comes under the Met received his renewed FAC four days after his FEO visit. The Met’s consolidation to one unit in Empress Building obviously workd!


  2. CJ

    So, Anne Barnes Kent Police’s current Crime Commisioner has the cheek to say her force is subsidising firearms owners and could put more police on the streets, but all the time her department have had to issue 50 times more temporary certificates (from 61 in 2014 to 3008 last year) due to (one assumes) not being staffed properly to complete the bureaucracy, jump through the hoops and wrap up the red-tape in sufficient time to renew an owners certificate before it expires.

    One has to wonder if she deliberately under staffed the Firearms department because of her personal objections.


  3. Greymaster

    The follow on question is how long it took to issue a renewal having issued a S7 permit. I do wonder of the 1205 issued by Hampshire Police in 2015, how many have been converted into renewals.



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