The possession of firearms and ammunition in Great Britain is regulated mainly by the Firearms Acts 1968 (as amended). You'll find guidance, good practice on firearms law, and forms for applying for approvals under the law.

Firearms licensing


Firearms law: guidance to the police is a comprehensive piece of guidance intended to assist consistency of practice between police forces and to encourage an informed understanding among firearms users of the considerations involved. This is the most recent version - 2002.

Firearms Security Handbook provides guidance for police and others on securely storing and moving guns. Firearms security: a brief guide is also available.

The 2011 leaflet 'Air weapons: a brief guide to safety' contains information on the safe handling and storage of air weapons, the different types of air weapons and air weapons and the law.  

Approval of rifle and muzzle-loading pistol clubs explains what approval means and how clubs can apply for it. It also explains the criteria and conditions which they must meet in order to obtain approval and remain approved.

Other publications include:

Maritime security


Police use of firearms

For general information for the police on the use of firearms, you need to go to the following pages on The National Archives:

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