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Authorisations / licensing

With certain exceptions, an authorisation is required for the acquisition, keeping, transfer, storage and/or manufacture of explosives.

There are three types of authorisations:

What is a licence?

A licence is a document that allows the holder to store and/or manufacture explosives. The holder of the licence is the person who controls the activities covered by that licence ie manufacturing and/or storing the explosives, and complies with the conditions of that licence.

Licences can be granted by either, Local Authorities, Police, HSE or ONR, depending on:

Find out how and where to apply for a licence.

Licences can be transferred from one person to another, provided:

If a licensee dies or becomes incapacitated, a person manufacturing or storing explosives in accordance with the conditions of the licence, will be treated as being licensed until either:

If a licensee becomes bankrupt, or a company with an explosives licence goes into liquidation, administration, or receivership any liquidator, administrator, receiver or trustee in the bankruptcy will be treated as the licensee.

What is an explosives certificate?

An explosives certificate is a document that identifies a person as being fit to acquire and/or keep relevant explosives.

There are two types of certificate:

Anyone who wishes to acquire and or keep relevant explosives needs to contact their local police explosives liaison officer.  All explosives are relevant explosives apart from those listed under Schedule 2 of Explosives Regulations 2014.

What is an RCA (Recipient competent authority)?

An RCA is a document approving the transfer of civil explosives. Before any explosives are transferred, the consignee shall obtain from the competent authority for the place where the transfer will terminate, a recipient competent authority document which grants approval for the transfer.

No person may carry civil explosives unless the civil explosives are accompanied by a recipient competent authority.

Further information on transfer of explosives is available.

Find out more

Updated: 2020-12-07