§ Mr. Martyn Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what consultations he has had since 1 October 2000 with the Association of Chief Police Officers and representatives of shooting organisations, on the criteria for having a good reason for possessing shotguns; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Charles Clarke
The Government believe that it is right in principle that a person wishing to own a shotgun should have a good reason for doing so. However, we acknowledge that this is a complex area of law and practice and we would wish to consult widely on this issue.
For this reason I have asked the Firearms Consultative Committee (FCC), the independent statutory body that advises the Government on firearms matters, to consider this matter further and to report back later this year. The FCC itself includes members of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and of the main shooting organisations. The FCC in turn has sought the views of a wide variety of shooting and other organisations and convened a working group to discuss this issue in detail.