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Apply for an explosives certificate

The Explosives Regulations 2014states all regulations that must be followed when manufacturing, handling or storing explosive materials. A  free explosives guidance bookletis available to download from the Health and Safety Executive website. 

Apply for an explosives certificate

All explosive related applications are available on the right of this page. Please select the relevant form to download, complete and return to us with the appropriate fee.

Please allow 12 weeks for your application to be processed.

If you have any queries or need advice, please contact us.

Explosive application costs

Fees and charges for all explosives related application types are available upon request as each application cost is dependent on the detail within the application. Payments should be made via cheque or postal order, made payable to;

  • Police and Crime Commissioner for Hertfordshire.
Explosives applications fees and charges
Explosives application typeValid forCost
Acquire only  - Please contact us
Acquire and keep  - Please contact us

Returning your licence application

Any firearms licensing enquiries for Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire should be directed to:

Firearms and Explosives Licensing Department
Police Headquarters
Hinchingbrooke Park
PE29 6NP 

Buying or selling primers 

Section 35 of the Violent Crime Reduction Act details the restrictions of buying or selling cap type primers for metallic cartridge ammunition. The law only applies to metallic cartridges, and as such primers for paper or plastic shotgun cartridges are not affected.

It is an offence to buy or sell primers for metallic cartridges unless the seller or buyer;

  • is a registered dealer
  • sells by way of trade or business for primers or empty cartridge cases incorporating primers
  • produces a certificate authorising them to own a firearm that relates to the purchase of a primer, including the ammunition for such a weapon
  • is a duly authorised Crown servant
  • shows they are entitled under an enactment to own a firearm or the ammunition of such a weapon without a certificate
  • shows they have authority to purchase primers on behalf of another certificate holder
  • is authorised by regulations to purchase primers. This is a contingency provision and to date no regulations have been made.

Storage and security of black powder

Anyone who stores explosives has a legal duty to keep them safe and secure. This includes;

  • controlled explosives such as black powder
  • non-certificate explosives such as ammunition, smokeless powder and primers.

The Regulations allow small quantities of certain explosives, including black powder, to be stored without the location of storage being licensed, as long as the owner of such materials holds a valid explosives certificate for their own personal shooting purposes, such as muzzle-loading handguns and rifles.

Aquire only certificate

If you have an aquire only explosives certificate for the use of black powder, you must not store any black powder. 

Acquire and keep certificate

If you have an aquire and keep explosives certificate for black powder, you may keep it without a registered store for example;

  • up to 15kg black powder where only black powder is kept
  • up to 10kg black powder with 5kg smokeless propellant
  • up to 15kg of small arms ammunition or percussion caps, without the need for registration of licensing of the storage premises.

Correct powder storage

Powder storage is to be kept in its original container of plastic or cardboard up to a quantity of 1kg per container.

Containers can be stored within a partitioned wooden box, fitted with a hinged, airtight sealed lid, secured by hasp and padlock. Each partitioned section must have 30 percent additional height between the container top and the box lid. 

The box must not be located near an entrance to property, near mains services or sourceds of ignition.

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