BREXIT and Re-enactment

Since the 1st of January, this year the Executive Committee (EC) has been trying to find definitive guidance on the import and export of members equipment and weapons to and from EU countries and between countries within the EU and the licensing of firearms in the different jurisdictions within EU countries. Initially we had hoped to use our contacts within each EU country to obtain this information, but it soon became clear that we had to change our strategy. The EC therefore decided to firstly approach Governments directly through their Customs websites. This has not been easy as each country has a different way of operating and Customs matters are sometimes dealt with by the Ministry of Finance rather than the Customs organisation.

The EC sent the customs authorities the following email:

“Dear Sir,

I am the Chairman of the Napoleonic Association which is the major Napoleonic re-enactment group in the United Kingdom. In addition to staging events in the UK our members also attend events in XXXXXX at the request of local authorities and groups. The European events normally last 4 to 5 days but some events such as the Waterloo re-enactment can last up to about 10 days.

We are trying to establish how our members can import and export their equipment to and from XXXXXX. Events are held in XXXXXX but also simply involve transit through XXXXXX to a third country. The equipment we will be transporting are as follows:



Muzzle Loading Flintlock Muskets
Muzzle Loading Flintlock Rifles
Muzzle Loading Flintlock Pistols
Muzzle Loading Cannon

Other Weapons: Swords
               Sergeant’s Pikes


Officer’s marquees
Soldier’s tents
Awnings to provide shelters during the day.

Other Equipment

Cooking equipment
Personal equipment such as soldier’s cross belts
Uniform and personal clothing
Support equipment such as Public Address systems and signage.

As you appreciate, we are looking to make the process of moving of this type of equipment to and from XXXXXX as simple as possible for our members who do not normally get paid for attending these events. We would therefore appreciate any advice that your department can provide on what documentation we would require to import and export such equipment into XXXXXX and any restrictions that exist on the equipment listed above.’

We have received replies from the different authorities and the initial responses are summarised in documents included on the Association website. As we receive more information, we will issue updates on the Association’s website.