About The BWA

Our Aim

The purpose of the BWA is to:

  • Represent the interests of those companies along with their supply chain and service partners who have been approved to operate a customs or excise warehouse facility.
  • Promote the business interests of members in formulation and implementation of U.K. and European legislation.
  • Encourage exchange of best practice information between members.
  • Provide an effective communication network on key business issues.

The Association has advanced and grown over the years and has twice changed name, first to The Scottish Bonded Warehousekeepers Association, and then in 1979 to The Bonded Warehousekeepers Association.

Membership was restricted to companies who held a Customs & Excise warehouse approval, and the object of the Association was “to generally, and always in so far as consistent with the Law, to promote interests of members”.

Following publication of a consultancy report, on how the Association should develop and move forward, the Constitution was altered to allow a broadening of the membership.

Today, companies such as Producers, Importers, Warehousing & Distribution, Transport, Information Technology, Supply Chain/Logistics service providers, Equipment Handling and Security organisations are welcome as members.

Our Activities

The BWA actively participates with HMRC and sits on a number of key task forces such as the Joint Alcohol and Tobacco Consultation Group (JATCG) and the Joint Alcohol Anti-Fraud group (JAAF).

The BWA are signatories to the Excise Alliance with HMRC, dedicated to developing co-operative approaches leading to detection of smugglers and fraudsters. We are also signatories to a MoU which was introduced to develop and promote a framework for cooperation between our members and HMRC

A regular number of meetings and seminars are organised, by the BWA, to allow members and HMRC representatives to discuss topics relevant to our industry.

We also have regular engagements, with HMRC, on matters affecting our sector such as Brexit, VAT and Customs & Excise legislating changes, along with keeping an eye on existing processes that need attention such as Excise & Customs approvals, SEED and more.

Members of the BWA were instrumental in advising and supporting HMRC in preparation of the revised Excise Notice 197 “Excise Goods – Holding and Movement”.

We also have a representative and fully participate in the SWA H&S action group


The BWA is a non-profit membership based association, established in 1885, which provides a professional service to its members and related organisations specifically involved in Customs and Excise warehousing.

As a member you can expect the following benefits:

1. Representation

The BWA has over 80 companies as members throughout the UK and has established very close links to Government, regulatory bodies and other Associations. The BWA will engage on a strategic and partnership level to ensure that its members have a powerful voice which is acknowledged and listened to along with a consistent approach and vehicle to influence future policy.

2. Information, Guidance and Support

Members will have prompt access to all relevant information that affects their Customs or Excise warehouse status and have a forum to share and benchmark. The opportunity to influence policy and shape the future is there as the BWA are amongst a select group that is sought out by HMRC for its views and assessment of issues impacting the industry.

HMRC specialists within the BWA are available to give advice and guidance on all matters relating to the operation of Customs and Excise Warehouses and the HMRC rules and regulations that govern them. This extends to offering Awareness Training and annual Health checks to ensure that our members and staff are aware of the obligations and processes when operating a Customs or Excise warehouse operation.

3. Networking

Within the membership there exists a huge amount of knowledge and experience across all sectors of the industry which can be tapped into and exploited. A number of activities ranging from Seminars/Webinars, on specific topics, to informative networking events and special interest groups are planned each year which has proved to be very successful in building relationships and developing interaction between fellow professionals with shared interests.

4. Recognition

Enhance your professional credibility and visibility by belonging to one of the respected and widely known associations within the UK. Advertise on the BWA website to enhance your company’s profile. Current membership is set at £375 per year and is reviewed annually at the AGM held in June.