MEMBERS of the public who find they have guns and knives in their possession they shouldn't have, can hand them in to the police during a two-week amnesty which began on May 12.

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Police said: "Many firearms are held in innocence and ignorance of their illegality or are overlooked and forgotten in people’s homes. Some are held legally and are no longer required. Others are acquired and distributed by criminal networks to harm, threaten, and intimidate their local communities.

"The surrender gives people the chance to dispose of firearms or ammunition by simply taking them to a local police station and handing them over.

"The surrender will run until May 29. During that period, those surrendering firearms can remain anonymous and will not face prosecution for the illegal possession at the point of surrender.

Items for surrender include: illegally-held guns and ammunition; imitation firearms and air guns; other unwanted guns and ammunition including air guns and imitations; tasers; stun guns; CS gas; firearms you may have been asked to hide for someone else.

The items can be handed in to the front counter at Skipton police station.

In addition to the firearms surrender, Operation Sceptre will run from May 16 to May 22. Operation Sceptre is a coordinated week of activity where police forces across the country help keep knives off the streets and deter people from carrying them, and through information and intelligence, proactively target knife related offences.

As part of this activity, members of the public are encouraged to dispose of any unwanted knives in our knife amnesty bins, which will again be at Skipton police station between 16 and 22 May.

Assistant Chief Constable Elliot Foskett, said: “That’s why we are totally committed to taking as many items which could be used as weapons off our streets as possible, ensuring our communities are as safe from harm as possible because we want North Yorkshire to remain the safest place to live and work.

“I want people to take advantage of this campaign and know they are disposing of a potentially dangerous item in the safest way possible, without getting into any trouble. It’s a chance to do the right thing and a chance to potentially save a life”.

Changes to the Offensive Weapons Act 2019 means it is also an offence to possess certain items such as knuckledusters, throwing stars and zombie knives, even in private.