Police firearms campaign sees 28 guns and ammo surrendered in Banbury

A selection of firearms handed in to police as part of the surrender campaign. Photo: Thames Valley Police
A selection of firearms handed in to police as part of the surrender campaign. Photo: Thames Valley Police

A police campaign encouraging gun owners to surrender their weapons saw 28 firearms and ammo handed in to Banbury police station.

Thames Valley Police along with Hampshire Constabulary have received more than 500 firearms including a gun made to look like a walking stick as part of a two-week gun surrender.

Sgt Jim Heath with a gun made to look like a walking stick which was handed in. Photo: Thames Valley Police

Sgt Jim Heath with a gun made to look like a walking stick which was handed in. Photo: Thames Valley Police

The Firearms and Ammunition Surrender, which launched on November 13, urged people to take the opportunity to hand in any unwanted or illegal firearms to police, so that they could be disposed of safely.

Across the Thames Valley, 387 items (firearms and ammunition) were handed in – Banbury had more than anywhere in the county with 16 surrendered in Bicester, 21 in Witney and 14 in Oxford.

Surrendered items included antiques, starter pistols, deactivated and imitation firearms and BB guns.

Head of armed response for Hampshire and Thames Valley Chief Inspector Emma Baillie said: “We would like to thank everyone who handed in any firearms or ammunition as part of this surrender.

Two very similar looking guns, but the one on the left is a fake. Photo: Thames Valley Police

Two very similar looking guns, but the one on the left is a fake. Photo: Thames Valley Police

“This means that there are fewer firearms and imitation firearms on our streets which could have easily fallen into the hands of criminals.

“As a result our neighbourhoods are much safer, both for our residents and for our officers who work every day and night to protect them.

“We are very pleased that so many people took the opportunity to take part in this initiative and the number of firearms recovered certainly proves how valuable such a surrender is.”

Police forces across the country took part in the national campaign run by the National Ballistics Intelligence Service (NABIS).

During the campaign, those surrendering firearms did not face prosecution for the illegal possession upon surrender and can remain anonymous

However, this was not an amnesty and if further examination of a surrendered firearm reveals a link to a crime, this will be investigated.

Now the surrender is finished, if you find a firearm or are uncertain about the lawful possession of a firearm, call police on 101 or 999 in an emergency.

Alternatively call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.