To apply for a firearm or shotgun licence, read this information carefully as it has recently changed and then download the appropriate form from the ‘application forms’ section below.
In order to support the Beds, Cambs and Herts corporate vision to embrace digital innovation and provide wherever possible digital services to member of the public, the Firearms and Explosives Licensing department are moving away from requirement for payments to be made by cheque and are, instead, adopting a digital payment facility.
We are confident that public opinion from the vast majority of the shooting community is that digital services are long overdue and we are therefore attempting to comply with this requirement.
A digital programme of change is underway that will gradually introduce the inclusion of online submission of all forms and notifications and we hope to be fully online with all requirements by the end of the current financial year.
At this point, however, forms still need to be completed and posted along with a photograph - only the payment method will change.
Payment process from 1 December 2019
From 1 December 2019 we are able to take electronic payment or cheques/postal orders.
If you wish to pay electronically
Please download the appropriate application form and post this to us along with a photograph and land/club for where required (see application types below).
It is essential that you include an e-mail address on your application in order for us to e-mail you a link to make your payment. If you do not have your own e-mail address, we would encourage you to obtain one given that all future business will be carried out online.
If you are unable to obtain your own e-mail address, please discuss with trusted family or friends to establish if they are willing to receive e-mails on your behalf.
Do not send any payment at this stage
When your application is received by us, we will send you an e-mail containing a reference number and a link to the digital online payment provider. Follow the link and complete the payment, confirming your reference number. You will then receive confirmation that payment has been successful.
This process, of course, also helps you as it confirms that we have received your application; currently there is no such confirmation.
From 1 January 2020, digital payments will be mandated for all firearms licensing payments and cheques will no longer be accepted. An e-mail address must be supplied on your application.
If you believe you have a valid reason not to comply with the digital payment requirements under the Equality Act 2010, please contact us and we will, of course, assess your requirements on an individual basis.
|Grant of firearm certificate
|Renewal of firearm certificate
|Variation of a firearm certificate (one for one variations are cost free – charges for variations other than 1-1 apply, other than when the certificate is being renewed at the same time)
|Replacement of a firearm certificate lost or destroyed
**variations – please send us your current certificate with your application, but first ensure that you have purchased sufficient ammunition to cover you whilst your application is being processed. The average turn around time for a variation is 3-4 weeks.
| Grant of a shotgun certificate
| Renewal of a shotgun certificate
| Replacement of a shotgun certificate lost or destroyed
Firearms and shotgun certificates valid for the same dates.
| Coterminous grants
| Coterminous renewal
Visitors to the UK can possess a firearm, shotgun or ammunition without a certificate if they are granted a visitors' permit.
Applications for a visitors' permit should be made at least eight weeks prior to arrival in this country. We cannot guarantee the issue of a visitors' permit with less than eight week's notice.
Applications for visitors' firearms or shotgun permits must be submitted with the following documentation for each visitor:
- European Union (EU) visitors - copy of European Firearms Pass (EFP).
- Non-EU visitors - either copies of current valid firearm or shotgun licences, or the equivalent of a local Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check from their country.
| Individual visitor's permit
| Group visitors' permit (groups of six or more valid for the same dates)
Registered firearms dealers
Registered firearms dealers
| Registration or renewal
| Additional premises
New certificates (grants)
For all new applications, a home visit is required by your local firearms enquiry officer. You will be contacted to arrange a mutually agreeable time and date for your visit, but please be aware that our enquiry officers do not work evenings or weekends, therefore you will be required to be available between 8am and 4pm, Monday to Friday.
Please do not submit an application if you are going to be out of the country/unavailable to facilitate a visit within 8-12 weeks of your application.
If you are applying to shoot on land or as a member of a shooting club, the following form must be completed and submitted with your application.
To assist you we will send you a renewal reminder letter 12 weeks before your certificate is due to expire.
If your renewal application is received by us less than eight weeks prior to you expiry date, and/or is incomplete, this gives us insufficient time to process it, and you therefore may be required to place your firearms, ammunition or shotguns with a person authorised to possess them until you receive your new certificate.
You must also submit a land authority or club form if relevant with your renewal application as we need confirmation that you are still authorised to use the land.
Apply for shooting club approval
All new or renewal applications for shooting club approval should be submitted directly to the Home Office. This applies to all clubs in England and Wales. Applications should no longer be sent directly to the police.
Once your application has been submitted, the Home Office will review it to determine if it is valid and, if so, pass it to the police force, who will then make necessary enquiries before sending the application back to the Home Office for consideration. If you do not provide sufficient information and supporting evidence your application is likely to be rejected as invalid and will need to be resubmitted.
Before applying you must ensure that you fulfil the criteria as set out in the Home Office clubs’ criteria leaflet.
Artificial target shooting
If you are applying to approve a site to enable persons who are not shotgun certificate holders to shoot at artificial targets, such as clay pigeon shoots, please complete the 'application for a section 11(6) authority' form below.
Applications relative to planned events should be made in advance to avoid disappointment, we recommend at least four weeks prior to the event.
Returning your application
All applications for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire should be posted to:
Firearms and Explosives Licensing Department