Latest variation just went through in just over 8 weeks - I was told it could take up to 12 weeks, so am thoroughly chuffed!
I just wanted to comment that Sussex FLD were thoroughly helpful and professional - I've had my licence a while and have always made the effort to be polite and patient. I have also provided clear reasoning and research for any variation I've requested (in the form of a cover letter and any supporting documentation/permissions/etc). This has come back to me tenfold in the way they respond.
On my application I requested that I retain my licence whilst the paperwork was being processed (as I shoot very regularly and needed my licence to purchase ammo etc), and that I will send it in by next day delivery when the paperwork reaches the top of the pile - they accepted this and I received a phone call from a polite lady asking me for my licence when she was processing my variation... this meant I was only actually without my licence for a week (during which time I carried a photocopy).
On this subject, what is everyone's interpretation of this law? - mine is that you are not breaking the law by not having the paper part with you (as you would be with a driving licence) - the law states you must have a licence to be in possession of a firearm. i.e. it means you cant buy one without one, or allow it to expire if you still have your firearms.
I'm not a fan of BASC as they generally seem to encourage confrontation between licensing depts and FAC holders/requests, I've also had some pretty shocking advice and comments from them... but I digress...
Thank you Sussex FLD, and I hope that everyone out there on both sides (licensing depts and FAC holders) can take something out of this.