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Firearms and Explosives Licensing Department

Our aim is to provide a professional and accountable service in the management of Firearms and Explosive Licensing for the residents and visitors to North Yorkshire and the City of York.


Historically, the North Yorkshire Police Headquarters have been based in the village of Newby Wiske.  However, we are on the move to a new home at Alverton Court, in Northallerton.  Some departments have already moved and the Firearms and Explosives Licensing are due to go on 21st August 2017.

As you can imagine, the last seven months have been extremely busy.  Not only are we in our peak renewal period for firearms and shotgun certificates, but we are also  facing the challenges of the physical relocation in to the new building and adapting to modern working practices.  Lots of plans and preparations have been undertaken to make the transition as smooth as possible.  We aim to provide a seamless switch in the services we provide, however we have had to change some of our procedures and timescales slightly and thank our certificate holders for any patience that may be required over the next couple of months.


We work to The Code of Ethics which is a nationally adopted set of behaviours that combine police regulations and police staff standards of behaviour.

Our priority is to support the legal, safe and secure possession of firearms. We consider all Firearm licensing  applications with fairness and process them with respect and efficiency.

We function to administer two acts:

We have direct links with operational police officers and intelligence data which have come from reports and arrests, not just convictions.

Our team constantly monitors incidents and undertakes the necessary vetting of each applicants history and medical status. These procedures can take some time, but are essential to ensure that the legal ownership of a firearm, shotgun or explosive is not granted to the wrong person.

We may refuse a certificate to an applicant if they or occupants at the same address have a history of violence, irresponsible or criminal behaviour.

A large amount of our time is spent chasing renewal applications for certificates that are due to expire and returning incomplete application forms.  The prompt return of application forms and attention to the necessary information required, releases the valuable resources necessary to keep the Department up to date.

This site is not monitored 24 hours a day – in an emergency please dial 999.


Home Office – Guide on Firearms Licensing Law (Apr 2016)

Home Office Security Manual 2005

Health & Safety Executive – Explosives Information

The British Association for Shooting & Conservation – Codes of Practice

British Deer Society

Countryside Alliance

Clay Pigeon Shooting Association

National Gamekeepers Organisation‎