Recently I had a visit from a firearms officer, as I'd given written permission for someone else to shoot (with a centrefire rifle) over part of my land, and he wanted to check out the terrain. Anyway, in conversation I mentioned that I'd been for a long time considering applying for a sec.1 certificate myself, but never got round to it. "Do it now" he said, "because it's soon going to get harder, take longer and cost more". True to his word, he sent me all the necessary bumph next day. No probs finding suitable referees - asked same folk who've signed my shotgun licence renewel from time to time over past 20-something years, a magistrate and a minister of religion. Interestingly, the Rev'd had just recieved a circular from "head office" (God??) saying that it was likely that soon all firearm licence applications and renewels would need to be counter-signed in the prescence of a solicitor! Has anyone else heard of this? Obviously, folk won't be so willing to do it if it's going to mean a trip into town, and associated expenses.