HC Deb 27 February 1997 vol 291 cc290-1W
Sir Jerry Wiggin

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what extra staff are to be taken on to administer the Firearms (Amendment) Bill following its enactment. [17452]

Miss Widdecombe

A new firearms compensation section is to be set up within the Home Office on a short-term basis and will initially comprise 50 staff. Their specific task will be to process claims from those persons who surrender their lawfully held handguns which become prohibited under the Act. Payments will also be made in respect of ancillary equipment used solely in connection with those handguns, and to owners of small calibre pistols who choose not to, or are unable to, join a licensed pistol club. In addition, there will be some new work arising from the granting of licences for the new pistol clubs. It is expected that this work can be accommodated within existing resources.