The Firearms & Explosives Licensing team are currently working hard to process all existing casework, whilst responding to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 outbreak.
At this moment we have stopped all home visits, unless in exceptional circumstances, in order to assist with social distancing and to ensure that we are following advice from the Government and Health Service. We will look to use other methods to get in touch with you regarding your firearms.
To assist at this time we would be grateful if you could avoid emailing or telephoning the team unless your query is of an urgent nature. We do anticipate that processing existing grants, renewals or variations will take longer than normal - below are some questions and answers that may avoid the need to contact us.
We would ask that anyone considering submitting a new variation request to avoid doing so unless absolutely essential as there is likely to be a significant delay in processing these requests.
Please keep checking our website for further updates.
I submitted a renewal/grant/variation some weeks ago and haven’t heard anything. What should I do?
Unless your certificate(s) shows that you have expired please wait until we contact you.
My certificate has expired. What should I do?
Please contact us, ideally by email so that we can discuss your individual circumstances. If you have forgotten to renew, and are in possession of guns then you should, as a matter of urgency arrange for them to be transferred to another certificate holder or dealer, and notify us in writing or via email of where and who the guns have been transferred to.
Important changes coming your way:
Applying for a firearm / shot gun certificate / Dealer Registration
North Wales Police are making changes to the application process and the requirement for medical information.
Applicants will be required to provide medical information verified by a GP for all firearm and shot gun grant applications, renewal of existing shotgun and firearm certificates or applications to register as a firearms dealer.
This applies to all applications, whether declaring a medical condition or not. The change is being implemented to enable the Police to make informed decisions which will protect both the shooting community and the wider public. The change will mean a consistent and fair process for all applicants and will assist in improving application processing times.
Frequently Asked Questions
When will this new medical process start?
This change will commence on June 10 2020 for any new grant applications. For existing shotgun and firearm certificate holders it will apply to those applicants whose certificates will expire on or after September 14 2020
Applicants letter to GP (PDF)
What does this mean for you, the applicant?
On applying for the grant of renewal of a firearm and/or shot gun certificate, or registration as a firearms dealer, all applicants will be required to submit with their application form a completed GP pro forma. This pro forma will be available on the North Wales Police website.
The fact you have a medical condition may not necessarily mean your application is refused. However, a false declaration could result in your prosecution, your application being refused, or your existing certificate being revoked and your firearms or shot guns being seized.
Who contacts my GP?
Applicants will be responsible for contacting their GP or a suitable service provider qualified to
provide this information.
What happens if I do not submit the pre-medical screening information?
Applications received without the applicant’s medical information (medical pro forma) will be returned to the applicant with a request to submit this information. If the application is received again without this supporting documentation the application will be refused.
Why are North Wales Police implementing this change in policy?
This change has been agreed and adopted by all four Welsh police forces. It has also been implemented
by many Firearms Licensing teams in England.
The Firearms Act 1968 (as amended) and the Home Office Guidance states that before granting or renewing a firearm and/or shot gun certificate the Chief Officer of Police must be satisfied that applicants can be permitted to have firearms, shot guns and ammunition in their possession without danger to public safety or to the peace. Details that are required in order to make an informed decision on an applicant’s suitability, includes information relating to their medical history.
The current medical process in place may leave a substantial gap in the available information and intelligence assessed at the point of grant or renewal. Medical evidence is pivotal to police decision making.
The introduction of pre-application medical screening will ensure that the firearms licensing department has all the relevant available information as to the suitability of the applicant prior to grant or renewal. This will help to mitigate risk as far as reasonably practicable. This single process will also make the process more streamlined and quicker for applicants, as the police will no longer have to contact the GP and await a reply.
Why is North Wales Police implementing changes not contained within the Home Office Guidance on this matter?
Whilst Home Office Guidance is intended to assist with consistency of practice between forces it is Chief Officers who are ultimately responsible for the administration of firearms licensing in their force area. Home Office Guidance acknowledges and understands that it may be necessary for forces to depart from the guidance when each case is assessed on its merits and the circumstances justify such a course of action.
Home Office Guidance also has no statutory footing and our legal advice is that if harm was done as a result of the police issuing a certificate, the responsibility for failing to properly manage the risk, would from a legal perspective fall to the police.
Will my GP charge for this report?
Guidance from the British Medical Association is very clear that this type of work falls outside of the NHS remit and as such surgeries will request a fee from the applicant.
Firearms Regulations 2019 and the Firearms (Amendment) (No. 2) Rules 2019
The amendments made under the Firearms Acts introduce changes to the controls on firearms
- responsibility for secure storage arrangements in relation to certificate holders under the
age of eighteen
- the particulars to be entered by firearms dealers into their register of transactions in order to
reflect new marking requirements for firearms and essential component parts
- the notification of certain deactivated firearms held in the United Kingdom and their
Forms are available to notify the Secretary of State of possession, or transfer, of a
What does the NWP Firearms Licensing Department do?
The Firearms Licensing Department offers advice on matters relating on Shotguns, Firearms and Explosives Certification.
Our policy is based on ensuring that Public Safety is not jeopardised and that all applications are dealt with on a fair and equal basis.
Shotgun renewal application letters give alternative ways of acquiring an application form as well as a list of the criteria needed for countersignatures. They are sent out within 16 weeks of the expiring certificate date. We also enclose a checklist to assist with the application.
Co-Terminus and Firearm renewal application letters are sent within 16 weeks of the expiring certificates. Please remember to submit your Land Permission Letters, and any Club membership details with your application on renewal.
Once your application is received by Firearms Licensing Department it will be processed as soon as possible. Please note that we are now experiencing high volumes of demand and applications are presently taking a minimum of 16 weeks to process. Please do not telephone the department during that period.
Please ensure that you advise 101 with details of any shooting, pyrotechnic and explosive events.
Telephone: 01745 539394 (10.00 – 14.00 Monday to Friday)
Fax: 01745 539632
Text: 07800 002401
Address: Firearms Licensing Department, North Wales Police, PO Box 100, Prestatyn, LL19 0BH
Social Media: Facebook
Read the Frequently Asked Questions
What fee do I pay for an application?
Please note the following changes in fees which come into force on Monday 6th April 2015.
- Firearm Certificate Grant: £88:00
- Firearm Certificate Renewal: £62:00
- Shotgun Certificate Grant: £79.50
- Shotgun Certificate Renewal: £49.00
- Co Terminus Certificate (Grant of both Shotgun and Firearm): £90:00
- Co Terminus Certificate (Grant of Shotgun / Renewal of Firearm): £90:00
- Co Terminus Certificate (Grant of Firearm / Renewal of Shotgun): £90:00
- Co Terminus Certificate (Renewal of both Shotgun and Firearm): £65:00
- Variation (not like for like – a request for an additional authority) for Firearms: £20:00
- 1-4-1 Variation: NO FEE
- Replacement Shotgun Certificate: £4:00
- Replacement Firearms Certificate: £4:00
- Game Fairs Grant: £13.00
- European Firearms Pass: NO FEE
- COER1A Individual: NO FEE
- Visitiors Permit (Individual): £20:00 per person
- Visitors Permit Over 6 Persons: £100:00
- Registered Firearms Dealership (Grant / Renewal): £200:00
Can I pay online?
We can take card payments safely and securely online. If you would like to pay online, note this on your application form and confirm your email address – there is no need to send any payment with your application. When we are ready, we’ll send you an email link to make your payment.
Cheques/Postal orders to be made payable to ‘PCC for North Wales'
We request that renewal applications are submitted to the below address by post within at least 6 weeks of the certificate expiry date to enable us to process the application before the expiry date.
This is providing all the details have been entered correctly or the application will be returned to the applicant for amendments which will delay the process. Please remember to submit your expiring certificate on renewal.
It is an offence to possess a firearm or shotgun without a current certificate
From 14 July 2014, if a person receives a suspended sentence of three months or more then they will not be able to purchase or possess a firearm or ammunition for a period of five years from the second day after sentence. This timescale has been set so that a person who is in possession of a firearm or ammunition is not in immediate breach of the law when the sentence is passed and has an opportunity to make arrangements to transfer or dispose of their firearm or ammunition.
Police firearms licensing departments should be monitoring the behaviour of their firearms certificate holders. In line with best practice it would therefore be advisable to review the outcome of any court appearances to ensure that those receiving suspended sentences on or after 14 July are aware that they would need to transfer or dispose of their firearm and/or ammunition.
However, a person who received a suspended sentence before 14 July and already has a firearm certificate would be able to retain their firearm and ammunition for the duration of their certificate.
Section 110 makes another amendment to the Firearms Act so that from 14 July 2014, a person who has served or received a criminal sentence will not be able to possess an antique firearm. The prohibition applies to anyone who has served a custodial sentence of more than three years or has served a custodial sentence, or received a suspended sentence, of between three months and three years.
A person to whom this applies and who currently lawfully possesses an antique firearm will need to dispose of it by 14 July.
The Home Office circular covering this change can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/home-office-circulars-2014.
If you wish to complete your form electronically, guidance can be found here.
Renewing your shotgun and firearm certificate - general advice
Shotgun Applications and Renewals
Application for the grant or renewal certificate (form 201 - 2017 - 1)
Shotgun Checklist (form 69286)
Vary firearm certificate (form 201v - 2017 - 1)
Firearm Applications and Renewals:
Application for the grant or renewal certificate (form 201 - 2017 - 1)
Firearm certificate checklist (form 69287)
Vary firearm certificate (form 201v - 2017 - 1)
Co-Terminus Applications and Renewals:
Co terminus checklist (form 69285)
Explosives - Black Powder Certificate:
Registered Firearms Dealership:
Visitor permit (form 61116)
Air Weapons Licensing in Scotland
The Scottish Government is introducing a new licensing system for most air weapons in Scotland.
From 31 December 2016, you will generally need a visitor permit to use, possess, purchase or acquire air weapons while in Scotland. This includes buying an air weapon, someone giving one to you, or simply having an air weapon in your possession. If you already hold a valid firearm and/or shotgun licence issued in England or Wales before 31 December, and you are not planning on buying a gun while in Scotland, you may not need a permit until your existing certificate expires or is renewed.
Applications for visitor permits (or full air weapon certificates) should be made to Police Scotland who will decide your application and deal with any questions you have about the process. You can download the appropriate application form from www.airweapon.scot or www.scotland.police.uk. When complete, it should be sent to Police Scotland at:
Air Weapons Team
2 French Street
You can also get further information on air weapon licensing, including information on exemptions from the need to hold a certificate, at www.airweapon.scot.