Opinion Former Article

Airgun legislation tough enough, BASC tells Home Office

BASC has told the Home Office that no further restrictions are needed in response to a review of airgun licensing in England and Wales.

The review, which concerns airgun security, manufacturing standards and access by young people, closes on February 6th and BASC is urging members to submit their own views to the consultation in its final days.


In its robust response, BASC outlined the following points:

-      Current legislation already addresses the issue of storage and under 18 access.

-      Airgun manufacturers already supply products that are safe, fit for purpose and fully comply with British firearms and consumer products law.

-      The police already struggle to properly service existing certificate holders and simply do not have the resources to deal with millions of additional certificates.

-      Airgun restriction would have unintended consequences including a collapse in sales for the trade and a loss of opportunity for young people to learn how to use them safely and correctly. Restrictions could also undermine conservation efforts as airguns are used to control grey squirrel populations.


Rory O'Loughlin, from BASC's firearms team, said: “Airguns are firearms under the law and are regulated appropriately, more so than the general public are aware. The law was changed in 2010 and already addresses the issue of young people having access to airguns.

"There has been a 77 per cent reduction in air weapon offences from 2003 – 2016; this proves that existing law is working and there is no need for any more. Introducing further national restrictions would be disproportionate. We urge the Home Office to look at the situation objectively and consider the practical consequences of what is being proposed.”

To have your say, email responses to firearmsconsultations@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk  by February 6th.

ENDS

More Articles by British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) ...

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