Gunmaking has been a long established trade in the UK for over 200 years. The
production of hand made guns was centred around St Chad's Cathedral. Birmingham
supplied the guns for the Napoleonic Wars when over 3 million gun barrels were
made in Birmingham.
In order to stem imports of guns from abroad which were not often of the same
quality as those made in Birmingham, the ordinance factory at Enfield was
established. This Proof House was responsible for testing the guns and ensuring
their quality and safety and is still present today in Banbury Street.
Birmingham fulfilled its role in the 1st and 2nd world wars as a major
supplier of guns and ammunition for the war effort. The BSA (British Small Arms)
factory which is probably the most well known example was established in 1861.
Birmingham still produces sporting guns and has an excellent and world renowned
name for quality.