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UK Law on Explosives Materials

As a rule, you need a licence from an appropriate licensing authority to store explosives. The amount stored, the storage location, and how long you can store it, depends on the type and quantity of explosive.

How Long Do Explosive Certificates Last?

In general, explosives certification has a similar validity to shotgun and firearm certificates.

The authorities can issue explosive certificates to ‘acquire and keep’ for any period up to five (5) years. The same applies for an explosive certificate to acquire only.

Who to Contact about Explosives Issues?

What if someone rents a garage or a lockup near to you and you believe there are explosives inside. Who should you tell?

You can contact your local police. Use the 101 police non emergency telephone number. Try to give them as much information and details as possible with names and addresses.

The police will forward the information to the most relevant department for you. The police can also give you further advice on how to warn your neighbours of any possible dangers.

As a rule, the police are unlikely to visit the location and make a forced entry into the lockup or garage. Instead, they will collate intelligence and evidence before taking any direct action.

Note: You are within your rights to report this type of situation to the Anti Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321.

How Much is an Explosives Licence?

Costs vary for the certification of granting and renewing licences for certain firearms or explosive materials. The price of various certificates are as follows:

  • In some cases, the explosive certificate is free. But, there is a fee for certain other types of explosive certificates. You can get further details from the forces explosive officer or firearms licensing department.
  • Grant of Firearms Certificate: £88
  • Grant of Shotgun Certificate: £79.50
  • Renewal of Firearms Certificate: £62
  • Renewal of Shotgun Certificate: £49
  • Shotgun Coterminous Renewal: £3
  • Variation: £20
  • Visitors’ Permit: £20
  • Visitors’ Group Permit: £100

If you change your address you must notify the relevant police force without delay. You will find the details of the exact person or department to notify on the papers that you received concerning the certificate.

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Answers to Police Questions about Explosives Laws in United Kingdom