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Earlier this year, the government changed the law to introduce, for the first time, a legal definition of an antique firearm. Some collectable old guns now fall outside of the definition.

The government took the steps due to concerns over the misuse of antique firearms by criminals. According to the National Ballistics Intelligence Service, there had been a sharp rise in the number of antique guns being seized from crime scenes in recent years.

The new measures update the Policing and Crime Act 2017 and the latest change follows a public consultation that ended in December 2018.

The law effectively changed on March 22 but owners were given six months to decide whether to apply for a firearms certificate, or to otherwise dispose of the weapon.

The seven cartridges which previously appeared in the Home Office guidance as ‘antiques’ but which have been omitted from the equivalent list in the 2021 regulations (and will therefore require a licence to be legally held from September 22) are:

.320 British (also known as .320 Revolver CF, short or long)

.41 Colt (short or long)

.44 Smith and Wesson Russian

.442 Revolver (also known as .44 Webley)

9.4mm Dutch Revolver

10.6mm German Ordnance Revolver

11mm French Ordnance Revolver M1873 (Army)