Recently got an email from a few airsoft sources in the UK about the proposed Violent Crimes Reduction bill which would, amongst other things, ban the sale or importation of replica weapons. There's been a campaign to try to get the blanket ban removed but the focus is apparently now on working with the Home Office to obtain some sort of exemption, in a similar fashion to re-enactors. If you're in any way interested in airsofting or harbour any ambitions of one day owning one, check out the text of the message below:
There is a proposed piece of legislation currently being considered by parliamentary process called the Violent Crime Reduction bill. It WILL ban the sale of realistic replicas in the UK and despite our best efforts we have not been able to prevent its passage through the process to date. Whilst we do agree that every effort should be made to keep airsoft replica’s off the streets and out of the hand of the idiot few, it does appear that our only hope to keep genuine airsoft alive in the UK is to gain an exemption from the VCR proposals.
How? There are 2 stakeholders representing airsoft interests, the site’s governing body (UKASGB) and the ABA (Association of British Airsoft). They are working with the Home Office now to gain an exemption. These organisations are in a realistic position to actually do something constructive on behalf of all airsoft interests in the United Kingdom.
• Does this affect you?
Absolutely. Airsoft WILL die if an exemption is not gained.
• Can you personally do anything?
Yes, you can sign up to the ABA on their web site and put weight of numbers behind the proposals. http://associationofbritishairsoft.org/support/aba_support.htm
• Does it matter if I don’t sign up?
Yes it certainly does, our weakest area is weight of numbers; we also need to prove that we are working together on this and that we are all willing to stand up and be counted as responsible airsofter’s.
• But it’s pointless, the Government will do whatever they like! That is not true, the Government is anxious to show that it has left the door open, exemptions are there to be granted; and exemption for legitimate airsofter’s and retailers will save airsoft. So, it’s up to all of us to show we are worthy and can make it happen.
• But I am only 14 and won’t be able to buy airsoft equipment anyway!
If you don’t support the proposals when you are 18 you won’t be able to buy it then either. Airsoft will cease to exist very quickly in the UK if these proposals are enacted by law.
PDF Flyer : http://www.airsoftcommunity.co.uk/aba.pdf
(You will need the latest version of Acrobat reader)
Show ABA support : http://associationofbritishairsoft.org/support/aba_support.htm
Then, on top of that, I got an email today which, on the one hand, is potentially a dream come true - a decent electric L-85A2/SA-80, complete with optional 4X SUSAT sight - but I just hope it ships bloody soon, just in case everything goes all pear-shaped with the VCR bill! I *must* have one! See http://www.l85.co.uk