Firearms Licensing Changes

In 2018, the Thames Valley Police Firearms Licensing Department implemented an early renewal project in order to resolve a long term problem with the administration of firearms licensing applications.

In 1995, the term of firearm and shotgun certificates was increased from 3 to 5 years.  This amendment, while of benefit to shooters, resulted in licensing departments experiencing high volumes of renewals over 3 of the 5 years, and this increased demand has remained constant since the change was made.  As a result of this, we have often had difficulty in dealing with the higher volumes of renewals during the peak years. 

The aim of our early renewal project is to level off this peak in renewals but we need your help. With your assistance this project will enable us to provide a better level of customer service to all our certificate holders, regardless of where they are in the five year cycle.

What can you do to help us?

The firearms licensing department will be sending out the next batch of early renewal letters at the beginning of November 2019. If you receive one of these letters it means that your renewal expiry date is due within a high peak demand year. This letter will be inviting you to renew your shot gun or coterminous certificate(s) a year earlier. You will only need to pay a reduced renewal fee of £25.00, however, this fee does not include any charge made to you by your General Practitioner (GP) to check your medical records.

For ease of administration the department will send with the early renewal letter an application form, a GP pro forma and a self-addressed envelope. You can pay via BACS, cheque or postal order. BACS instructions are provided in your early renewal pack.

Do you, the applicant, need to provide a medical report?

Yes. There has been an important change to the Thames Valley Police firearms licensing application process with regards to your medical information.

You are now required to provide medical information verified by a GP for all firearm and shotgun applications - this includes renewals. This applies to any application, whether declaring a medical condition or not.  You, the applicant, will be responsible for contacting your GP for this information. The GP pro forma is included in your early renewal pack and once completed by your GP, should be submitted with your application form.

Applications received without this information will be returned to the applicant.

What happens after we receive your application?

Once you have submitted your application form you will receive a text message to confirm receipt (if you have provided a mobile telephone number on your application form).  It is not necessary for you to contact the department to enquire about the progress of your application as it is not subject to any service level agreement as you are still in possession of a valid certificate. Your application will be processed by the firearms licensing team according to monthly demands. A final text message will be sent to you once your application has been completed and posted.

Once you receive your new certificates in the post, you must return the old ones to us.

 Message Sent By:  Zoe Powderly (Police, Manager, Firearms Licensing )