Offensive Weapons Act 2019: surrender and compensation scheme. December 2020 - March 2021

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C_Claycomb

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It has just come to my attention that the UK is seven weeks into the surrender and compensation scheme for knives, swords and firearms made illegal to process by the latest Offensive Weapon legislation. I thought it would be good to post it here for anyone who is even slower on the uptake than I am!


The scheme will start on 10 December 2020 and close on 9 March 2021.

Bottom of page 17 discusses changes to the definition of a "flick knife" such that it definitely includes spring assisted folders, and could be interpreted to include manual flipper folders.

Flick knives and gravity knives: Currently, section 1 of the Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act 1959 makes it an offence to manufacture, sell or hire, offer for sale or hire, expose or possess for the purpose of sale or hire, lend or give to another person or import flick knives and gravity knives.

Section 43 of the Offensive Weapons Act 2019 amends the definition of flick knife in section 1 of the Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act 1959 to include knives that can be opened through a mechanism not in the handle itself. This includes any knife that opens automatically from a closed position, or partially opened position, to a fully opened position by means of any manual pressure that is applied to a button, spring or other device which is contained either within the knife or is attached to the knife.

Section 44 of the Offensive Weapons Act 2019 amends the Restriction of Offensive Weapons Act 1959 further to prohibit the possession of any knife under section 1 of that Act, ie a flick knife or gravity knife.

There is much debate about whether this means manual flippers or only knives with a spring assistance. Its a grey area and could be argued either way from the above wording. I have read encouraging posts from a couple of folk on Edge Matters, who are involved in law or spoken to the police, and they say they do not think that manual flippers are intended to be made illegal, only the spring ones. But its early days and I think its good for people to be as aware as possible and make up their own minds.
 
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Broch

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Yep, time to destroy my sword stick :(
I didn't understand the pricing structure the first time I read it through and I still don't.
 
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C_Claycomb

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Is the stick a nice stick? If it has value as a stick, I would be inclined to do a little grinding and epoxy potting and render it a single piece.

or what Mr Ed said... :)
 
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Laurentius

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Yep, time to destroy my sword stick :(
I didn't understand the pricing structure the first time I read it through and I still don't.
I am not a legal expert, but would not keeping the blade permanently unsheathed, and stopping up the stick so it cannot be inserted, effectively render it as deactivated and for display only?
 

Laurentius

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I have just read the descriptions through, and once again I am puzzled as to why a curved sword more than 50cm long is inherently more criminal by design than a straight sword, or for that matter what is the difference between some agricultural tools and a zombie knife other than the paint job or wording on the handle. Forbidden weapons are not the problem on the streets, it is a prevailing knife culture where anything sharp will do as a weapon. As for the weapon with a chain and a weight on the end, you can be done for carrying a bog chain home from the plumbers now it seems :)

These laws are more about the appearance of being hard on crime and boosting the stats a bit with a feel good press release about the number of dangerous weapons handed in that are now no longer on the streets.
 

Broch

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Thanks for the thoughts and ideas guys but it has no value; I made it years ago :)

It just struck me that a nice historic sword stick would only get £12 but a cheap rifle scope gets you £150 but is not illegal.

It's almost as though the whole thing has been put together by people with no experience whatsoever :(
 
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slowworm

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I do wonder how many people are fully aware of this legislation. Last I heard even people with the now prohibited firearms have not been told by their licening authority that their legally held firearms need to be surendered.
 

BJJJ

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Not something that I was aware of and it is pertinent to a knife that I have had for over twenty years. I will have to find it and destroy it . Thanks for the information.
 

Broch

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I know we've been through this all before but I remain confused as to why a blowpipe is now illegal to own but a crossbow, a catapult and even my 60Lb long bow are all legal (thankfully).

I totally agree with removing rapid fire (auto and semi-auto) firearms, but why allow .22RF rapid fire? What legal purpose do they fulfil? I have taken advantage of using one in a busy bunny field but I don't think I could claim it to be a 'need'.
 
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slowworm

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Plenty of people use .22 semi-autos for target shooting. You could ban that but then what about virtually any other activity? The obvious one would be any fast cars/bikes as they cause far more deaths.

There's various reasons for the ban on the lever release / MARS actions but probably not worth bringing up.

Going back to the blowpipe, when does something become a blowpipe?
 

Broch

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Mmm... I did 22RF target shooting for years; we never used semi-autos. I know some used them on running boar, but they were still only allowed one shot per run so hardly vital for the sport.

They are expressly trying to prevent people having access to firearms that allow multiple shots with very fast reload times; a .22RF is quite capable of causing carnage at short ranges. But I wasn't really trying to start a discussion on such issues; I was merely pointing out my confusion.

As to a blow pipe, from the act:

"the weapon sometimes known as a “blowpipe” or “blow gun” - being a hollow tube out of which hard pellets or darts are shot by the use of breath;"

So milk straws and chewed paper are still allowed :)
 

slowworm

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Look up gallery rifle shooting, a sport practiced by thousands and many comps require fast reloading. Most comps were designed for pistols/revolvers. If you're worried about 22 semi-autos don't look at PSG. Worth pointing out I'm not aware of any crime involving legaly held semi-autos in the UK, which would seem a fairly good reason for not banning evem more stuff without good reason?
 

Broch

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No, sorry, I'm not worried and I agree about not banning things without evidence - I just feel there are a lot of strange decisions in the act.

I had never come across gallery rifle shooting - all our semi-auto stuff was pistol. Has that come about after the pistol ban?
 

slowworm

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Gallery rifle shooting has evolved for many years, based on military and police target practice as far as I know. A bit more info here: https://nra.org.uk/learn-to-shoot/gallery-rifle/#equipment

My rather long winded point though is that the rifles that have been banned don't really offer much of an improved rate of fire. I also know that some disabled shooters have used lever release rifles and now they will be excluded from the activity.
 

slowworm

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May 8, 2008
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As to a blow pipe, from the act:

"the weapon sometimes known as a “blowpipe” or “blow gun” - being a hollow tube out of which hard pellets or darts are shot by the use of breath;"

So milk straws and chewed paper are still allowed :)
I did read that. So, being pedantic, if I have a straw in the house and rice does that mean I fall foul of the law?

I'm also puzzled as a quick google shows blowpipes and darts for sale in the UK!
 

swotty

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Who'd have thought the day would come when peashooters were a prohibited weapon!

Sent from Somerset using magic
 
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C_Claycomb

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Someone on EdgeMatters who works in the legal field describe the people who write laws, not as thoughtful and well reasoned law makers, but as exhausted and overworked legal clerks attempting to produce a single document to satisfy multiple (often ego driven and warring) departments.

The answer to making "zombie" knives illegal is simple. People who buy huge, jagged, spiky knives painted with fake blood and designs glorifying beheading people, albeit fictional un-dead ones, are; not likely to have real need, have a warped childish idea of what is impressive and want to impress peers with same. I suspect that on average such people should not be allowed to indulge such desires. Why buy a scary looking knife unless part of you wants to scare people? Banning them doesn't solve the problem, but it chips away at it.

Curved swords are similar in that morons with blade fetishes fancied themselves samurai and bought cheap stamped out swords, then ran around the streets with them, sometimes naked. Longer swords give more reach which makes them more dangerous (in theory). How is a cheap samurai sword to be described, vs other swords? Its hard to write specifications like this, even if you know the subject. Looking for it to make technical sense is a lost cause because it is only partly about the technical. Its also driven by the behaviour of morons on the street and often by single brutal crimes.
 
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Broch

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Agreed and, having worked in the Civil Service for a while, I understand the conflicts of political and egotistic motivation that goes on in and between departments. The petty fighting between departments is something you can only really believe when you've seen it :(
 

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