Dorset Firearms Licensing – diary of an FAC renewal application

It may be of interest to other Dorset FAC holders to see the progress of this writer’s application for renewal of his FAC, which expires in September 2022.

13th May 2022 – FAC renewal reminder letter received from Dorset Police, about 4 months in advance of the expiry date. Very helpful, thanks.

15th May 2022 – On-line application form submitted. The on-line form was well structured and easy to complete – but be aware that you cannot save it and come back to it another time. Take note of the list of things they say you need and have them available before starting!

16th May 2022 – GP letter pro-forma (downloaded from the police website) taken to local GP surgery. £20 Fee paid. The surgery has clearly had such requests before, and took it in their stride.

20th May 2022 – Completed form collected from GP surgery. A scanned copy then e-mailed to the Firearms Licensing dept.

21st May 2022 – The attached standard letter was received. It illustrates the current scale of the delays that the Firearms Licensing dept have in processing applications. On the positive side, at least they are being up-front about it and are managing expections.

Now we wait…. nothing more expected for 2-3 months at the earliest.

26th July 2022 – Almost exactly 2 months after the application was submitted, the below letter was received. It states that the FAC will not be renewed by it’s expiry date, and confirming that it has been extended by 2 months. Fair enough! Let’s see whether it is actually renewed before the extended expiry date.

27th October 2022 – Five and a half months in, and today a temporary permit was received. It is valid for a further 6 months, which takes us nicely to the (1st) anniversary of the application.
As a temporary permit, it only covers the rifles already held and does not allow the acquisition of any new ones. Not a problem, as it happens.

11th January 2023 – visit from a very friendly and helpful officer, who was most apologetic for the state of firearms licensing in Dorset. After all the usual questions, and several corrections to the police records, a positive outcome was assured.

1st February 2023 – Eight and a half months after submitting the renewal, a shiny new FAC appeared, correct in every detail. Not sure I’d trust the bloke in the photo though – looks pretty sinister to me.

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