A NEW study has shown the West Mercia region has one of the highest amounts of shotguns in any UK area.

West Mercia placed fourth on this list behind Dyfed-Powys (Wales), Norfolk and Suffolk, with 5,295 shotguns per 100,000 people.

Chief Inspector Callie Bradley of the firearms licensing unit said it was common for rural areas to have a larger amount of residents with a shotgun licence but stressed the figures are not a concern.

“West Mercia Police cover an incredibly large geographical area, much of which is rural," she said.

"It’s common for rural areas to have a higher number of residents who hold shotgun licences due to the amount of agricultural land and the number of people in rural communities who take part in shooting sports. 

"These figures are not out of the ordinary and are no cause for concern.

“All applications for firearms and shotgun licenses are vigorously reviewed by our firearms licensing team, and existing licenses are also regularly reviewed in line with statutory guidance.

"We also regularly engage with firearms dealers, clubs and license holders.”

Security experts at Get Licensed have looked into firearm offence rates, firearm certificate holders, certificate revocations and rejections as well as certification expenditure to create the UK Firearm Report.

They have compiled the data for regions across the country.

The findings revealed the UK areas with the highest number of shotguns, with West Mercia featuring in the top 10.

This covers the number of shotguns covered by licences in each police force area to reveal the areas of the UK with the most guns.

Readers can read the research in more detail by visiting this link: https://www.get-licensed.co.uk/get-daily/uk-firearm-report/.

The research revealed the following about West Mercia:

  • There have been 60.4 offences involving firearms (per 100,000 people) recorded over the past decade.
  • There are 9.67 firearms dealers (per 100,000 people) in the police force area.
  • The police force area is home to 5,295 shotguns per 100,000 people.
  • Around 1.79% of firearm applications were rejected in 2022/23.
  • 43 firearm certificates were revoked in the police area between April 2022 and March 2023.
  • The area's population spends around ££278,933 on renewing and applying for shotgun and firearm certificates.