Office of the Secretary


Tätigkeit des Papierkrieges

Do you recall being told that computers would save paper?

[yes, it's got to be up there with the greatest lies of all time, a close second to "I'm from the Government, and I'm here to help you." -Ed]

Well, I'm afraid that isn't so when it comes to the implementing of the new "uniform" Weapons Act.

 Now it seems to me that members with collector's licenses endorsed for H (handguns) may have to justify the retention of ALL handguns, pre 1901 as well as collectable handguns (1901 to 1946) and modern collectable handguns (post 1946). The Guild has formulated a response.

Please remember when writing to WLB about wanting to acquire or retain an item, you must convince the Authorised Officer that you have a prolonged and genuine interest in the study, preservation or collection of firearms. Desiring to keep an item for sentimental reasons (eg your first pistol club gun) is NOT REPEAT NOT ACCEPTED as a valid reason. The good news is you should not have any trouble with pre-1947 items. But — you still have to go through all the paperwork.

When applying to acquire or retain post-1946 item, with which the AA seems to decide in accordance with pre-determined views (a.k.a. bias) a thematic or investment theme is recommended. Now that the Government has disarmed the population, I consider all remaining firearms to be historic, having varying degrees of heritage value, but that is not what is meant by the new laws. For a handgun to be "historic", it would have to be owned by someone famous, have significant heritage value and most likely need to be supported by documentation. (eg, a handgun owned by someone who won an MM, VC or whatever or owned by someone who was a battalion commander and so on.)

 No doubt WLB  will sooner or later ask all holders of a collector's licence to fill out a QP517. The completion of this form by the holder and by the historical society representative is the only means by which WLB will acknowledge a collector's licence holder as being a member of an approved historical society. Your membership card or a letter from me will not do. It must be via a QP517 form.


 QP0517 Form Download (adobe.pdf format)


WLB are not an friendly bunch. Failure to provide them with a duly filled out QP517 form when requested could well lead to the cancellation of your collector's licence.

[When sending the Secretary of the Guyild a QP517 form to countersign, it would be helpful if you could include a pre-addressed envelope, addressed either to yourself or to WLB so I can send it to where it has to go ASAP.]

 One or three last pieces of advice: Keep a copy of all correspondence to and from WLB. They have a tendency to forget things which might be in your favour. When talking to someone at WLB, he sure to write down the name and organizational position of the person to whom you are talking, their decision/advice on a subject, the time and the date. Try also to get their direct line telephone number in case you have to talk to them again.

 To quote a senior figure in WLB to whom I was speaking some time ago: "It's not going to get any easier."

[WLB have long since trespassed beyond the expressed object of The Weapons Act 1990 ("preventing the misuse of weapons) and are using   strict controls on the possession, storage and carriage of weapons as means to another end - they have in mind that the best way to prevent misuse of weapons, is to prevent all use of weapons.- Ed]

At the time of writing, our beloved and revered PM seems to think that Australia is not at increased risk of terrorist attacks but on the other hand he wants increased anti-terrorist powers for ASIO. My politically incorrect suggestion is that all apprehended terrorist suspects should be put on the first plane to France for processing by the DST (the French version of the thought police). In the meantime, your phone may be tapped (mine almost certainly is), you are on Crimtrak and Polaris or whatever and our PM probably doesn't like PM jokes.

So, see to your security (ammo and guns — antique or otherwise), treat your garden and lawn to any idle fertilizer lying about (Don't let your innocent passion for horticulture cause you grief) and keep a low profile while enjoying life in this country that five generations of servicemen and service women gave their lives for.

Best of luck from y

(S Wigzell, Acting Secretary)