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Firearms Application

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The Essex Police Firearms, Shot Guns and Explosives Licensing (FSEL) Section manages all aspects of the licensing of firearms and explosives.

The team, based at Headquarters in Chelmsford, is responsible for:

  • making enquiries into applications for firearms, shot guns and explosives
  • issuing certificates and permits within the Essex Police area
  • managing registered firearms dealers
  • managing Home Office approved gun clubs

On the next few pages you’ll find an explanation of the application forms for certificates, advice on firearm safety and answers to your most frequently asked questions.

Essex Police follows Home Office Firearms Law guidance in the administration of firearms.

Please see our Service Delivery Targets page for full details of timescales for the processing of all applications.

Important Information about Renewal Process

Any renewal application made between January 1, 2017 and March 31, 2018 is subject to a Postal Renewal Process for shotgun and firearms certificate holders. Under this process certificates expiring are not issued with a Temporary Permit. Provided a renewal application has been received and certain criteria are met, a full certificate is issued and delivered via post. In these instances certificate holders should still expect a visit or a telephone call once the certificate has been issued.

For any renewal application received from April 1, 2018, provided the renewal paperwork and payment is received one month prior to expiry, the renewal will be processed and the certificate issued subject to certain criteria being met. In all instances the applicant will be subject to a home visit by the local Firearms Enquiry Officer. The renewed certificate will be handed over at this visit, provided no issues are identified.

If complete and correct paperwork and payment is received more than 8-weeks prior to expiry, then should the decision on renewal not be possible prior to expiry and the licensing department has no concerns about the application to renew, you will receive a letter which will confirm that your current certificate is extended by 8-weeks. This extension will give you the same terms and conditions as you currently hold. You must produce the letter which will reference your certificate number with your current certificate in order for it to be considered valid. This is not a local arrangement but is subject to a statutory change that came in to effect on 17.04.2018.

If paperwork and payment are not received at least one-month prior to expiry, it cannot be guaranteed that the renewal will be processed in time and as a result you will be required to lodge your guns until your certificate is renewed.

Essex Police continue to maintain robust processes to ensure that all renewal cases are assessed based upon information and intelligence held within police systems, from medical information and also from referee testimony.

Our fees

How do I make a payment?

Payments can be made in the following ways:

  • Online using internet banking services
  • Banking applications on mobile devices
  • Telephone banking
  • By visiting the local branch of your bank and either paying at the counter or via a self-service machine

Please note that Essex Police cannot currently accept debit or credit card payments on our own website.

During a short transition period, we can continue to accept payments by cheque, be made payable to ‘Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex’. After this transition period, we will only accept the payment methods listed above.

All payments should be made to the Essex Police Firearms account:

  • Sort code: 30-80-12
  • Account number: 17669368

Please ensure all payments include a 16 character reference in the following format to ensure the payment can be matched up with your application:

This stands for Firearms Shotguns and Explosive Licensing and forms the first 4 characters.

First initial of applicant's first name (5th character)

First five letters of applicant's surname (6th, 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th characters)

The applicant's date of birth (six number format DDMMYY)

David Johnson born on 1st of November 1972 would be:
FSELDJOHNS011172 (a total of 16 characters)

Please write this reference number on the top of your application form:
Reference number written at the top of the application form

Failure to include the reference in the correct format will result in a delay with your application being processed.

Firearms certificates (valid for 5 years)

Grant of firearm certificate

Renewal of firearm certificate

Variation of a firearm certificate so as to increase the number of firearms to which the certificate relates

Replacement of a firearm certificate which has been lost or destroyed

Firearms certificate for a Home Office approved club (valid for five years)

Application Forms

Shot Gun certificates (valid for five years)

Grant of shot gun certificate

Renewal of shot gun certificate

Replacement of a shot gun certificate which has been lost or destroyed

Co-terminous certificates. Grant of both shotgun and firearm certificates

Co-terminous certificate.s Grant of a shotgun certificate /renewal of firearm certificate

Co-terminous certificates. Renewal of a shotgun certificate /grant of a firearm certificate

Co-terminous certificates. Renewal of both shotgun and firearm certificates

Application Forms

Explosives certificates (valid for up to five years)

Acquire and keep

Acquire only

Application Forms

Dealer registration (valid for three years)

Initial registration of a person as a firearms dealer

Triennial re-registration as a firearms dealer

Game fair etc., if principal place of business is in another police force area

For Home Office Section 5 applications, renewals or amendments please visit this link.

* Club approvals

Home Office club approval (valid for six years)
£84.00 (Please do not send any fee to Essex Police. Await an invoice from the Home Office).

To apply online for Home Office Club Approval please visit this link.

Visitors permits

Application for a single visitors permit

Group application for a visitors permit (5 to 20 people)

Application Forms

European Firearms Pass


Application Forms

  • Information for firearm certificate holders

    The publication of the Policing and Crime Act 2017 has resulted in changes in the way that expanding ammunition is recorded on Firearms Certificates issued from May 2, 2017 as follows:

    • There will no longer be an expanding ammunition condition on any Firearm Certificate.
    • You will now only have one authority for each calibre of ammunition, up to the maximum in the guidelines below.
    • If you have existing authorities for solid and expanding ammunition of the same calibre, you will receive a temporary permit. This permit will be valid for one year to allow for the reduction of any holding you may have in excess of the revised limit detailed on the Firearm Certificate.

    There is no longer any requirement to have authorities to acquire or possess expanding bullet heads or missiles.

    Home Office guidelines for amunition authorities
    .22 RF
    .17 HMR
    Vermin and ground game


    .22 WMR (.22RF MAG will be listed as .22 WMR) 750
    Fox, vermin and ground game
    22 HORNET
    .223 REM
    Ground game, fox and vermin
    .243 WIN
    .270 WIN
    Deer and fox
    Solid slug (Practical shot gun only) 300  

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