Firearms & Explosives Licensing Officer

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Police Roles

Staff Roles

Police Staff
Full Time
Criminal Justice
Bristol, Kenneth Steele House- BS2 0TQ
SC 5

£25,758 - £27,690

Please note, if this is a paid role and the role is part time then the salary quoted will be pro rata based on the hours worked per annum.  

12/12/2022, 12:00

Do you want to make a difference in your community by ensuring that firearms and explosives are held legally and safely? The Firearms Licensing department are committed to delivering a high standard of service to the communities it serves.

Every person that works for us, is in some way supporting and serving the community we represent. Each day brings you new challenges and decision making and your learning and development will be ongoing within the department. This is a role that will give you the opportunity to work closely with individuals, groups and companies. A typical day will see you undertake enquiries relative to the granting, variation and renewal of all Firearms, shotgun, explosives certificates and permits ensuring compliance with the relevant legislation.

Our Firearms Licensing department delivers dedicated resources and expertise. You will become a single point of contact for clubs and registered firearms dealers as well as members of the shooting fraternity.

In this role, your main responsibilities will be: 

  • To make comprehensive enquiries into individuals, applications and current authorities relating to the possession of shotguns, firearms and ammunition by certificate holders and firearms dealerships, including enquiries on behalf of other forces and outside bodies such as the Home Office.
  • To safely inspect firearms and ammunition held by certificate holders and dealerships, including the making safe and taking possession of, any prohibited, unlawful or surrendered firearms and ammunition. Inspecting registered firearms dealers registers of transactions, reconciling against current stock and making follow-up enquiries relating to recorded transactions.
  • To visit Home Office approved rifle clubs as a point of liaison and to conduct any necessary compliance checks.
  • You will be required to assist police officers and staff with enquiries and investigations, when a detailed and specialist knowledge of licensing issues surrounding firearms, shotguns and ammunition is required.
  • To deal effectively and professionally with other police forces, licence holders, registered dealers, clubs and other agencies and organisations in relation to firearms licensing matters. This requires the post holder to remain up to date with current firearms and explosives legislation and to maintain and continue to develop technical skills and expertise in relation to a wide variety of weapons and ammunition.
  • To inspect land nominated for hunting with rifles and prepare a suitability report in relation to the proposed quarry and calibre of the rifle, considering potential issues of public safety.
  • Following appropriate training and qualification, Firearms Enquiry Officers will be appointed as Explosives Liaison Officers, with powers and responsibilities as Inspectors under the relevant provisions of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, to inspect and approve explosives storage and to institute proceedings. In respect of these duties officers may liaise with Local Authority Trading Standards Officers and the Health and Safety Executive as appropriate.

Skills, experience and qualifications required: 

  • You should be computer literate, with a knowledge of Microsoft Office and databases with high attention to detail and accuracy. The ability to compile timely and accurate reports on all aspects of firearms and explosives matters, along with the experience to give evidence in Crown Court.
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills are essential to enable effective communication within the organisation, dealing with a variety of ranks and departments.
  • You will be required to work flexibly and on your own initiative to plan, organise and monitor own workload. This will include prioritising and working to deadlines along with the ability to cope under pressure in a busy working environment.
  • You should hold a full current driving licence.
  • Ability to analyse previous convictions and intelligence in respect of applicants for certificates and current certificate holders, relating this to the potential impact on


  • Specialist, in depth knowledge of the law, procedures and guidance relating to the licensing of firearms and explosives.
  • A working knowledge of associated legislation, for example the Deer Act 1991 and the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.
  • A sound knowledge of ballistics in relation to shotguns and rifles; the various forms of explosives and ordnance which may be encountered and the general and specialist software applications used within the Firearms Licensing Department.
  • A thorough understanding of Equal Opportunities, Health and Safety, Human Rights, Freedom of Information and Data Protection legislation and policy as affects the role.

Successful completion of appropriate courses, including the following:

  • Firearms Enquiry Officer Course
  • Explosives Liaison Officers Foundation Course (examination and certificate) – Successful completion leads to appointment as Inspector under Health and Safety Act for explosives. Also qualifies certificate holder to enrol as an Associate Member of the Institute of Explosives Engineers. Explosives Foundation Course (examination and certificate) – City and Guilds Certificate in Explosives Foundation Experience: Experienced in the provision of a specialist, professional and effective firearms and explosives licensing service to the force, the general public and outside agencies and bodies including the Home Office, UK Border Force and the Health and Safety Executive.

To be eligible to apply for this role you must have a 3 year ‘checkable history’ in the UK – ideally this means that you would have been resident in the UK for the last 3 years.

Does this sound of interest to you?  Click on the blue button below to apply.

About us

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We are on a journey to become the most inclusive police force in the country. 

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Blended Working/ Hybrid Working

Avon and Somerset Police encourage flexible working where operationally possible.
This role has been identified as a blended role.
The successful candidate for this role will have the opportunity to work from home whilst also at a secondary work location, which will be a police premises. The successful applicant will have the option to discuss working arrangements with their line manager. All applicants must reside within the UK.

Important information before you commence an application (for external applicants)

You will require the following detail to complete this application form:

  • National Insurance Number
  • Identification Detail e.g. passport
  • Address information including proof 
  • Referee information
  • Full employment history including dates and any qualifications you may have attained
  •  Tattoos - you will also be requested to provide photos and describe of any visible tattoos you have

If the role requires you to drive you will also be required to upload details from your full driving licence including photos. 

Important information before you commence an application- for ALL applicants

The application system only remains active on a single page for a period of 60 minutes.

Please ensure you allow time to complete your application fully as part complete pages do not save.  

If the role has evidence questions you may wish to save these remotely and paste your answers into the boxes at time of submission. 

This vacancy is closed to applications.