Gun Barrel Proof Act 1855

JurisdictionEngland & Wales
Citation1855 c. cxlviii
ANNO DECIMO OCTAVO & DECIMO NONO
VICTORLE REGIME.
*****************44*******t**4*********44Wietagalk4**
Cap. cxlviii.
An Act for insuring the due Proof of Gun Barrels
in
England,
and for other Purposes.
[16th
July
1855.]
W
HEREAS by Royal Charter, dated the Fourteenth Day of
March
One thousand six hundred and thirty-seven, the
Master, Wardens, and Society of the Mistery of Gun-
makers of the City of
London
(in this Act called the Gunmakers Com-
pany) were incorporated, with perpetual Succession, and with Powers
of searching for and viewing and proving and marking all manner of
Hand Guns whatsoever, great and small Daggs and Pistols, and
every
Part thereof, whether made in
London
or the Suburbs, or within Ten
Miles thereof, or imported from Foreign Parts or otherwise brought
thither for Sale, and a Scale for such Proof was thereby established,
and a Stamp was thereby authorized to be used for such marking by
that Company : And whereas the Gunmakers Company, in pursuance
of the Provisions of their Charter, have established a Proof House
near the City of
London
for such proving : And whereas in or before
the Year One thousand eight hundred and thirteen, Money was sub-
scribed in
Birmingham
for the Erection and Establishment in that
Town of a public Proof House for Fire-arms : And whereas by an Act
of the Fifty-third Year of the Reign of King
George
the Third, Chapter
[Local.]
26
Q
One
Charter,
dated 14th
March 1637.
2362
18° & 19° VICTORLE,
The Cun _Barrel Proof Act,
1855.
53 G. 3. c.
115.
55 G. 3. c.
59.
One hundred and fifteen, intituled
An Act to insure the proper and
careful manufacturing of Fire-arms in
England,
andfor making Pro-
vision for proving the Barrels ofsuch Fire-arms,
the Guardians, Trus-
tees, and Wardens of the Gun Barrel Proof House of the Town of
Bir-
mingham (in
this Act called the
Birmingham
Company) were incor-
porated, with perpetual Succession, for the Purpose of proving and mark-
ing Barrels of Fire-arms, and were empowered to erect and establish
in
Birmingham
a proper Proof House, and to apply for that Purpose
the Money so subscribed, and Provision was thereby made for the
Repayment thereof with Interest : And whereas by that Act Provision
was made for the proving at the
Birmingham
Proof House of the
Barrels of Fire-arms not proved at the Proof House of the Gun-
makers Company or at some other public Proof House established by
Law, and for the marking of such Barrels as proved, and a Scale for
such Proof was established, and a Stamp was authorized to be used for
such marking by the
Birmingham
Company, and Penalties were
imposed in respect of the Sale of Barrels of Fire-arms not proved and
marked as proved at the Proof House of the Gunmakers Company,
the
Birmingham
Proof House, or some other public Proof House :
And whereas the
Birmingham
Company in pursuance of that Act
established a Proof House in
Birmingham (in
this Act called the
Birmingham
Proof House) for such proving : And whereas the
Money so subscribed for the Purposes of the
Birmingham
Proof
House, with the Interest thereon, was paid off : And whereas
by an Act of the Fifty-fifth Year of the Reign of King
George
the Third, Chapter Fifty-nine, intituled
An Act for amending an
Act of His present Majesty, to insure the proper and careful manufac-
turing of Fire-arms in
England,
andfor making Provision for proving
the Barrels of such Fire-arms,
further Provision was made for the
proving, and marking as proved, by the
Birmingham
Company and
the Gunmakers Company (in this Act called the Two Companies)
respectively of the Barrels of Fire-arms, and further Penalties were
imposed for the Purpose of securing the due proving of such Barrels,
and the Constitution of the
Birmingham
Company was altered : And
whereas the recited Acts have been put in execution by the
Birming-
ham
Company, and they are now possessed of the
Birmingham
Proof
House situate in
Banbury Street
in the Borough of
Birmingham,
which is vested in Trustees for them and is used for the Purposes of
those Acts : And whereas the recited Acts have also been put in
execution by the Gunmakers Company so far as they regarded that
Company, and they have ever since the granting of their Charter been
and are now possessed of a proper Proof House in
Church Lane,
Whitechapel,
near the City of
London,
(in this Act called the Proof
House of the Gunmakers Company,) which is used for the Purposes
of those Acts and of their Charter : And whereas by reason of pro-
gressive Improvements in the Manufacture of Small Arms since the
passing
18° & 19° VICTORIX, Cap. cxlviii.
2363
The Gun Barrel Proof Act,
1855.
passing of the secondly-recited Act, some of the Provisions of the
recited Acts respectively are not applicable to
every
Description of
Small Arm now in use, or are in other respects insufficient ; and it is
expedient that better Provision be made for insuring that Small Arms
made in
England
be properly and carefully manufactured, and in
order thereto that better Provision be made for the proving and
marking as proved of all such Parts of Small Arms as for securing
the safe User thereof ought to be proved, and that further Powers
be conferred on the Two Companies respectively for insuring Com-
pliance with the Requirements of this Act : And whereas it is expe-
dient that the Scale of Proof required by the recited Acts be amended:
And whereas it is expedient that all smooth bored single Barrels be
proved once only, and by definitive Proof, and only when in the State
in that Behalf by this Act provided, and that all rifled Barrels and
double Barrels be proved by provisional and also by definitive Proof
as respectively by this Act provided : And whereas it is expedient
that the
Birmingham
Proof House be vested in the
Birmingham
Company : And whereas, in order to avoid the Inconvenience of
several Acts relating to the same Matter being in force at the same
Time,
it
is expedient that the recited Acts be repealed, and that
Parts thereof be re-enacted with Amendments : And whereas the
Objects of this Act cannot be attained without the Authority of
Parliament : May it therefore please Your Majesty that it may be
enacted ; and be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty,
by and with the Advice and Consent of the Lords Spiritual and
Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and
by the Authority of the same, as follows :
I. This Act may be cited for any Purpose
as " The Gun
Barrel
Short Title.
Proof Act, 1855."
II.
This Act shall commence and have Effect
on and after the
Fourth
Wednesday
next after the passing thereof.
III.
This Act shall not in any way interfere with the Power of
Her Majesty, Her Heirs and Successors, from Time to Time to
establish public Proof Houses in such Places and under such Regu-
lations as to the Care and Management thereof as to Her Majesty,
Her Heirs and Successors, may seem
fit.
IV.
In the Construction of this Act the following Words and
Expressions have the following Meanings, unless there be
in the
Subject or Context something repugnant to or inconsistent with such
Construction ; to wit,
" Official Members of the
Birmingham
Company" means the
several Persons who by virtue of their respective Offices are
from Time
to
Time Members of the
Birmingham
Company :
"
Ordinary
Commeilee-
ment of A,
Reservin2-
Power for
Crown to
establish
public Prof
Houses.
Interpreta-
tion of
Terms.

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