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Thread: IMPORTANT- UK Offensive Weapons Law Change Proposals

  1. #1
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    IMPORTANT- UK Offensive Weapons Law Change Proposals

    Hi All,

    This topic is currently being raised in the classified but I thing it should get more coverage on the forum. The UK government is currently consulting on changes to the law on "offensive weapons":

    https://www.gov.uk/government/consul...ew-legislation

    The proposals will have a direct impact on the collectors ans dealers on the forum if they go ahead in full. While the aim of the legislation appears to be knives, swords are also included. Highlights include the prohibition on posting swords to private addresses (which the government acknowledges will drive some businesses under) and the potential outlawing of possessing swords in private residences (at least that is my reading of the information).

    The consultation is open until December and I would request that you share the link with anyone who may have an interest.

    The aim of the legislation is to reduce knife crime, whilst not wanting to get political it may be worth writing to your MP if you feel strongly about the issue as the may be other ways to address the issue (20,000 fewer police and a corporate line in some forces to not focus on low level crime...)

  2. #2
    Quote Originally Posted by IMoran View Post
    Hi All,

    This topic is currently being raised in the classified but I thing it should get more coverage on the forum. The UK government is currently consulting on changes to the law on "offensive weapons":

    https://www.gov.uk/government/consul...ew-legislation

    The proposals will have a direct impact on the collectors ans dealers on the forum if they go ahead in full. While the aim of the legislation appears to be knives, swords are also included. Highlights include the prohibition on posting swords to private addresses (which the government acknowledges will drive some businesses under) and the potential outlawing of possessing swords in private residences (at least that is my reading of the information).

    The consultation is open until December and I would request that you share the link with anyone who may have an interest.

    The aim of the legislation is to reduce knife crime, whilst not wanting to get political it may be worth writing to your MP if you feel strongly about the issue as the may be other ways to address the issue (20,000 fewer police and a corporate line in some forces to not focus on low level crime...)


    I wonder what will happen to Chefs and professional cooks knives?....some of them are a lot sharper than a bayonet and as lethal as any sword!!

  3. #3
    Hi
    First, it does relate to 19 offensive weapons, see list http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1988/2019/made which does not include swords.

    Second, antiques are NOT included, i.e. 100 years old or more.

    It seems the focus is on weapons which can more easily be hidden and carried covert than swords. Collecting sabres are ok as long as they are 100 years old or more, which should cover most, less those military seremonial weapons used for dress uniform. However, it is mentioned to exceptions for "cultural and religious knives".

    I think we can relax regarding any threat to our interest/hobby.

    Regards,
    Last edited by Trygve S; 10-21-2017 at 01:38 PM.

  4. #4
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    "...hospital admissions in England for assault with sharp instruments shows a rise of 13% in the year ending March 2016 "

    I'll bet prison admissions for stabbing someone are flat, though.
    hc3

  5. #5
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    Maybe the govt should be looking into the causes of the rise in assaults using knives, would have nothing to do with newcomers? I won't get political here.
    Trying to ban items that can be used as weapons has always failed and left the honest person defenseless.
    Yes 100 years old but soon if not already they will demand proof of age ie: a letter from a recognized business stating its age.
    I have already had this problem with customs, charging duty on antiques that are excluded duty. To get the letter proving age costs more than the duty fee.
    When govt doesn't trust its citizenry you have a problem.

  6. #6
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    I've responded. I think the main issue is that while the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (Offensive Weapons) Order 1988 specifically exempts antique items, they aren't mentioned at all in the proposals. My suspicion is that this is just a lazy omission, but greater clarity would be welcome. Certainly the other proposals seem sensible, and I don't see why anyone should need modern-made shurikens and other similar sharp martial arts paraphernalia in the UK in this day and age.

    John
    "If I can't be a good example to others, at least let me be a horrible warning".

  7. #7
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    I guess for me the question is"How does taking something from law abiding people keep the lawless in check?" I know people who enjoy throwing the Japanese toys for fun but harm no one. My own boys throw knives and are quite good. None of them have an interest in collecting swords but throw and collect modern knives of various styles. Everyone enjoys something different. In todays environment any weapon can be manufactured in most mens shops because technology and high quality materials are common. Good men are no danger to anyone and should not be restricted because there are bad men. Then the good or obedient are disarmed and the bad, well they do not obey the law anyway. We cannot legislate our way to safety. Eric
    The unlimited power of the sword is not in the hands of either the federal or state governments, but, where I trust in God it will ever remain, in the hands of the people." --- Tench Coxe

  8. #8
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    I find it unfortunate that some people feel that because they are not interested in owning/collecting something, that no-one else should need them. Personally I think we should all stand together in this.

    Antiques or otherwise, the swords we here enjoy were designed as weapons. We collect weapons! Why should it be OK to own an antique weapon but outlaw a modern version of it? Is the antique less deadly? Is it not rather poor form to collect our weapons, but say that someone else does not need their shuriken simply because we are not interested in them?

    While some of the proposals target existing specific 'offensive weapons', they also seek to make it very difficult to buy simple tools.

    Part of the legislation is to make many items completely illegal to even own, including all those on the offensive weapons list. This is most likely going to include modern-made curved swords. One of the stated reasons for that is to prevent criminals from being able to steal items from legitimate owners. If no-one is allowed them, criminals can't steal them.

    Given that, how long do you think it will be before someone in government realises that antique weapons, or any modern, non-curved swords for that matter, are just as deadly? It only takes one of them to be used by a nutter, stolen or otherwise. Then the usual English knee-jerk reaction of 'BAN IT' will be wheeled out rather than deal with the underlying issues in our society and justice system.

    It's one step closer to losing everything.

    The wording of the proposal, as it stands, also leaves it wide open for a court to rule that any one-handed opening knife is a flick knife, therefore (will be) illegal to own. How many people have used a one-handed opening knife? Leatherman tools and their ilk are now often one-handed. Even some Victorinox SAKs are one-handed. Spydercos. The list goes on. As a climber, I always carried a one-handed opener for emergencies. I have used them frequently at work, where a traditional slip-joint with a nail-nick would have been much more difficult to deploy in the situation.

    Without that being challenged, an awful lot of innocent people could find their tools outlawed, and themselves criminals for even owning them, overnight.

    Overall, the proposals seek to deal with a problem in an ineffective manner which will only impact law-abiding people. Most knife crime is committed with kitchen knives (taken from kitchens or stolen from shops) and box cutters which are sold widely. The proposals do nothing whatsoever to stop this. Instead they make a public statement that makes the government look like it is doing something useful to the majority of people who do not collect swords, use knives, or have an interest in martial arts weapons. It is useless in any practical terms and from that aspect alone should be challenged.
    When offered a spoon, one should not cling to one's fork. The soup will get cold.

  9. #9
    Well said Rick!
    We do live in increasingly absurd and frustrating times.
    I heard recently of a local carpenter/joiner who was stopped by the police in the early morning on his way to work.
    They checked his van over and found an edged tool in the front of his van and decided that it was an offensive weapon.
    He was warned that if was stopped again and the said tool was not in the back of his vehicle then he would be arrested for possession of an offensive weapon!!
    I hoped that this might be an urban myth but considering the person that told me, I doubt it.
    If this does become law then think of all the people that collect edged weapons of less than 100 years old, for instance the collectors of Nazi daggers.
    Their collections on just the possibility that this might become law would have
    the values reduced significantly and if it does become law, wiped out?
    If this law comes in will it be implemented in the same way as deactivated weapons, that is you can own an older spec deacs but not by or sell it? That's how I understand the law to be regarding
    deacs but of course I stand to be corrected.
    Will collectors of Nazi daggers, again for example have to sit on them until 2045 ish before they can once again sell them?
    I think I need a lie down!!

    Regs

  10. #10
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    Thank you Bernie.

    I can easily believe what you heard; there are similar and worse things happening. I'm a knife collector and things have been getting worse for years.

    For those who think our government can't really be so daft... at the moment it is illegal to buy anything described as a 'zombie knife/sword/weapon' in the UK. Yes, the law uses the word 'zombie'. Furthermore, it partially defines a zombie weapon as one having a green handle.

    Get that... a green handle! How deadly!

    Most people in the knife world will know the name Jimmy Lile, maker of the Rambo knife in the movie, and many very high quality knives. Many of these have a green cord wrapped handle, and many other makers do similar. Several of my knives have a green micarta handle. Such knives are now, according to UK law, 'zombie weapons' and one* is at this very moment pending destruction at the hands of the authorities. It is illegal to carry them outside of one's home, and if the proposals go ahead unaltered they will be illegal to own outright. So, my green-handled bushcraft knives will make me a criminal.

    Just how stupid can it get? So for those who think it can't get so bad that ordinary folding knives will become prohibited weapons, think again.

    I have one foot in the knife world, and a smaller foot in the sword world (yes, I walk oddly ) and I am very concerned for both. These latest events are just another step to prohibiting everything we enjoy.

    *just to clarify, I do not mean one of my knives, but one of those types with a green handle (but not in any way really related to the zombie weapons sold by that company.
    Last edited by Rick Fox; 10-25-2017 at 05:01 PM.
    When offered a spoon, one should not cling to one's fork. The soup will get cold.

  11. #11
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    I think you have to search and find the root to the problem and then confront him/her and ask exactly what’s going on. There must be some nutter somewhere making these policy decisions who is not fit for purpose. Find out what this person’s reasoning is and expose it to the world through mass media.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Hart View Post
    I don't see why anyone should need modern-made shurikens and other similar sharp martial arts paraphernalia in the UK in this day and age.
    To practice martial arts?
    To clarify John, many martial arts, from archery, to kenjutsu, to HEMA, to kali, make use of sharp swords and knives (or arrows) to practice the art of cutting (or in the case of archery, shooting a target). A sharp sword is not more dangerous than a sharp butcher's knife or gardener's billhook. The inclusion of curved swords, shurikens and various 'ninja' weapons on the list of 19 Offensive Weapons makes no sense. Around 90% of all knife crime is committed with a kitchen knife available from any house. Placing martial arts weapons on the list achieves nothing, other than political gesture and marginalising some peaceful cultural pursuits. If someone wants a massive sharp weapon to kill people with they simply need to go to B&Q or Wicks.

    Matt

  13. #13
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    Another massive issue with the law, as it stands (and as proposed with these changes), is that there is no distinction between sharp and blunt.
    A Napoleonic reenactor owning a blunt sabre for playing at being a light dragoon (or whatever), will now be a criminal until proven innocent. The Home Office has gone loopy.

  14. #14
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    I would like to remind you all again of the importance of feeding into this England & Wales Government consultation - you can do so through the link below, either by answering their questionnaire, emailing them a response, or both (which is what I would recommend).

    At worst, this proposed legislation has the potential to:
    1) Ban you from sending or receiving swords (blunt or sharp) to your home
    2) Ban you from importing swords (blunt or sharp) from abroad to your home
    3) Ban you from owning any curved sword in your home unless you have a legal 'defence' (but you will be considered guilty until proven innocent)

    As it is currently written, this legislation could affect ANY bladed item, from sport fencing foils, to scissors, to razor blades, to kitchen knives, to antique swords.

    Please have your say before it is too late and the UK Government makes a decision which could impact numerous sports, crafts and hobbies. You have until the end of November to take action, but it is my belief that responses which arrive early are more likely to be given greater attention.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/consul...ew-legislation

  15. #15
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    Completing that 'survey' from the above site is probably the best way we have as individuals of having a say in this.

    The direct survey link is: http://www.homeofficesurveys.homeoffice.gov.uk/s/WX2TN/

    The questions are cleverly worded to make it all sound unreasonable to argue with, but the correct answer to every one is 'NO'. Then justify how it will only cause problems to law-abiding people and have negligible effect on crime. The questions themselves use the word 'weapon' to refer to tools and sporting equipment. Even this must be challenged. Note that even the police firearms people refer to legally held guns (for hunting, target shooting, etc) as 'firearms' and concede that they are not weapons. That needs to apply to our sharp things too.

    The proposals will put many small independent knife makers in the UK out of business; possibly sword smiths too unless they mostly sell overseas. I'm concerned about my custom sword on order for next Summer.

    Writing to one's MP is also possibly helpful, but the survey is more important I think. Many of us have written to our MPs. Mine has refused to answer two letters but I know he'll sing the company line anyway. That's what most others MPs have done. The odd one has responded more usefully, but not many. Still, it won't hurt to explain how much impact it will have on us and not on criminals, especially if it stops us running businesses, spending money and paying tax!
    When offered a spoon, one should not cling to one's fork. The soup will get cold.

  16. #16
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    I find laws regarding any weapon or so called weapons have political motives, not common sense issues.
    These are done for political gain nothing more.
    I believe you must fight these laws the same way, not by common sense but to show them the political mistake they will be making enacting such laws.
    I find it appalling that such a great country that fought many wars including WW1 and WW2 subjects its citizens to govt. mistrust when it comes to antique weapons and modern weapons for that matter.
    I believe all firearms clubs etc. must also fight these laws as it erodes the ability to own anything considered even from the past as a weapon.
    Govt. is only further disarming honest citizens while dishonest and violent citizens remain armed. What bothers me is that govt. knows this.
    Good luck with your plight.

  17. #17
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    Interesting assessment summary
    https://www.gov.uk/government/upload.../IA_knives.pdf

    Imagine 50 states and territories discussing the same issues. While there is no way to directly equate US issues with UK laws, there are (and have been) a lot of similar concerns. I see the main issues in this instance the definition of offensive weapons with personal ownership and the issue of delivering goods. There are companies in the US that go to great lengths to not even sell any blade to customers in certain states.

    I had read and discussed the whole restrictions placed on swords some years ago and I do not see a change in those restrictions being amended in this proposal aside from the delivery issues. The definition of offensive weapons regarding blades a linked but separate issue being squeezed in to your proposed legislation. In our US political system, there would definitely be an effort to separate the two. Reasonable suspicion for any search and seizure warrants are not exactly a new concept worldwide but it is the domination by political peers that regulate any society.

    I can't stress enough that petitions and involvement on a large scale (not just posting on the internet) are vital if any group hopes to be heard. The UK (historically) has seen political issues and upheaval for centuries and it is truly through unified effort (standing officials or the public) that change occurs (for the good or bad). Pick a side and push. It will not be long across the globe that armed "regulators" will be commonplace in any metropolitan district and I'm sure you are aware it is more prevalent in other countries. Between sweeping the streets and any enforced searching, I would think it will be more apparent on the streets than the costs of search and seizure without just cause.

    As far as deliveries, the depot pick ups and counter sales age verification a pain in the butt I am sure but how far exactly are any are you from the mail offices/branches. I can understand more if it ships with some other carrier but maybe an amendment to restrict all shipping and delivery to the Royal Mail. Feel free to toss stones at me for mentioning that but the first impression I got from reading the first post on these months ago. Here it is, crunch time. Where was everyone over the summer?

    Cheers

    GC

  18. #18
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    I read the survey, it is a govt. fishing trip for info. If it passes you just gave them quantities and location to find your property. My belief is that this is NOT a survey but a way to confiscate.

  19. #19
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    Do you mean the same survey I've linked? There is nothing on there to actually indicate ownership of knives or anything. Just questions about the proposals. I doubt it will do much good for us anyway, it will only be used if the majority of answers are in favour of it all, but I don't think there's anything there that could be incriminating by answering.

    That aside, it still might be a fishing trip. But then, they would get far more evidence (grounds for search) by simply reading a few forums. Anyone posted a picture of a flipper recently? Axis lock? Gerber multitool? Green-handled 'machete'? Knock knock...
    When offered a spoon, one should not cling to one's fork. The soup will get cold.

  20. #20
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    As a young man during the 1960s
    I called the FBI and
    asked if I was on some sort of list.
    The reply was
    "you are now".

  21. #21
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    lol - yes, I don't disagree with the sentiment in the slightest.

    I'm sure I'm already on several lists.

    I mean, I even dared search google for 'Tails' once... so I'm on the NSA's list already. And I use a VPN, and S/MIME email encryption. Basically I'm screwed

    I live in a country who's security services once harvested supposedly anonymous voting stubs, correlated them with the voters, and put everyone who voted for a certain party on a watch list. I have no illusions of just how far our governments will stoop. At least that's one list I'm not on.
    Last edited by Rick Fox; 10-30-2017 at 02:42 PM.
    When offered a spoon, one should not cling to one's fork. The soup will get cold.

  22. #22
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    This :http://www.homeofficesurveys.homeoffice.gov.uk/s/WX2TN/ is the survey I began for several pages to where it asks in detail what you sell, how much, types etc.......
    Many questions for retailers. Many questions are so vague when they ask "do you agree certain types of weapons should be banned". They do not illustrate type of or call them anything else but weapons when can easily be best described utility tools, collector items etc. For a moment I thought a child wrote some of the questions.
    Mentioning banning "acids" suggests they are afraid to directly target the problem, very political.
    Actually even thinking that banning a knife or similar common item will work to stem future crime is just insane.
    I'm glad Canada does not have some of Britain's and Europe's problems that are creating these "band aid" bans on mostly common household items.
    Canada years ago had problems with sea doos so govt sought to correct this by making us pay for boating licenses which are written and paid for online! (so anyone can cheat and get one as long as they pay $$)
    Govt. also attacked 12 foot aluminum boats so it would not appear as a direct attack on sea doos.
    Heck if they can't ban it they TAX it.

  23. #23
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    deleted a double post.

  24. #24
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    Found this on BBC news today. Explains the problem. I think continental Europe is no different. The authorities’ response is clearly inadequate as they refuse to acknowledge the source of the problem which leads to wacky legislation.

    http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-41822965

  25. #25
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    I've noticed over the last few months that there has been a sudden increase in news reporting of any crime involving knives. Funny as the crime itself hasn't increased in the same order that rapidly... just the reporting to go along with the proposals and make a nice big public impact.

    Keep in mind that the police/government counts any sharp or pointed implement used in crime into the 'knife' statistics. So, use a sharpened screwdriver as a lot of thugs do, or a chisel to break into a house, or scissors, and they all become a 'knife' for the purpose of statistics fed to us. That started years ago.

    The real problems (which cannot be admitted by the government) are: the fact that there are the fewest police officers on the streets now since the 1980's. That's directly due to government spending cuts over the last few years. Also, the police themselves have their hands tied by their higher management and the government in such a way that they dare not enforce the law effectively in fear of upsetting one 'minority' group or another. Especially in London.

    I'm trying not to get political, but really all of this is basically a popularity and re-election campaign by a government struggling to justify itself and looking for a scapegoat. That, and there is an underlying 'ban everything' philosophy in the UK and many other countries now.
    When offered a spoon, one should not cling to one's fork. The soup will get cold.

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