POLICE in Hampshire are calling for guns and ammunition to be surrendered in a bid to make the area safer.

The force is currently holding a two-week firearms surrender which began yesterday (May 12) and will run until May 29.

During this period, those surrendering guns will not face prosecution for illegal possession.

They will also be able stay anonymous, though the history of each item will be checked for evidence of its use in crime.

The force said: “We want to take out of circulation any type of firearm and ammunition and make our communities safer.”

The two-week effort will see police take in guns which can still be fired, antique or unwanted collectable weapons, trophies of war, replica weapons and air weapons.

It will also include BB guns, stun guns and ammunition.

Items can be surrendered at police stations in Southampton, Portsmouth, Basingstoke and Newport.

Despite this though, if police find someone with a gun that they don’t hold a licence for outside this period, then they could receive a five-year prison sentence.

READ MORE: Armed police called to Cosworth Drive in Hythe after gun threat

Detective Chief Inspector Dave Storey, said: “We can be proud that gun crime in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight remains low and thankfully very rare.

“However, we are not complacent about gun crime, tackling serious violence is a Force priority and a firearms surrender works towards preventing crime and protecting the public; we want as many guns as possible to be handed in.

“Together with our partners we continually work hard to educate people about firearms and the dangers that come with them, to ensure that gun crime doesn’t become prevalent in the future.

“If you have even a shadow of doubt about the legality of a weapon or ammunition that you possess we urge you to hand it in during the surrender.”

A message from the Editor

Thank you for reading this article - we appreciate your support in reading the Daily Echo.

Subscribing to the Echo means you have unrestricted access to the latest news, features and Saints coverage - all with an advertising-light website.

You will also have full access to Saintsplus, your new home for Southampton FC tactical analysis, features and much, much more.

Don't take my word for it - subscribe here to see for yourself.

Follow the latest breaking news in the Southampton area by joining our Facebook group - Southampton News - Breaking News and Incidents

Follow the latest court and crime news on our dedicated Facebook group - Hampshire Court and Crime News