Changes to rules and regulations on use of Ministry of Defence ranges

From January 2009 there will be new rules and regulations that will affect everybody who shoots at Bisley and indeed at all of the Ministry of Defence ranges.

There are two distinct issues:

1. After the 1 January 2009 no civilian will be permitted to shoot on any MoD or MoD controlled range without having a certificate of competence signed by their rifle club chairman. If you are a member of the NRA or another NRA affiliated club you can use that club, if not you can use the BASC Rifle Club. This certificate has to be renewed each year and has to be signed by the chairman.

2. Those of you who want to shoot high energy rounds in effect those whose combination of rifles and ammunition exceeds 4,500 joules. This will not affect most of you but if you feel it does then please contact this office or the NRA for full information.  In a nutshell every time you wish to use this combination on an MoD range it will have to be check zeroed in the presence of an NRA RCO who has a high energy qualification. A typical 155 grain bullet (RG 7.62mm ammunition) with a muzzle velocity of around 2900 feet per second has a muzzle energy in the region of 3900 to 4000J.

How will this affect BASC members?

• Those attending our three Range Days will have to be assessed and certified that they are competent to shoot. The requirements are not that onerous, basically the individual will have to demonstrate range awareness and safe gun handling.

• Those who shoot at Bisley throughout the year on bookings made through the South East Region BASC office but do not attend Range Days, the assessment principal and requirement are exactly the same as above. However, you will need to appreciate that if you are not assessed prior to the 1 January 2009 we will not be able to book a range for you until you are assessed.

So how can you be assessed?

If you are a rifle club member (other than BASC) or a member of the NRA, they will be running assessment days and you will need to contact them directly.

If you wish to use the BASC Rifle Club, we will be assessing at all our Range Days starting on Sunday 12 October. However, we will be unable to assess large numbers of individuals on these days and priority will be given to those already booked on to the Range Day.

We also plan to hold assessment days throughout 2009 and at the end of this year, the first being planned for Thursday 23 October 2008. As we have to bring in an RCO and hire ranges we will have to make a charge for the assessment of £20 per individual. However, in order to help defray the cost to you we will make the lanes available for you to carry out some shooting practice, or zeroing, as you wish, once you have been certified.

In order to achieve this we will carry out assessments in the morning and again after lunch assuming the assessments are concluded in an hour this should allow the ranges to be used for two hours in the morning and one and a half hours in the afternoon. Even with having to share the lanes this should give you enough time to zero or practice.

The next step

If you are booked on to the October Range Day, Sunday 12 October, and would like to be assessed, please contact the BASC South East office, there will be no charge for this assessment.

If you would like to be assessed on Thursday 23 October, please download and complete the Range Certification Course Application form, please see the Target rifle and stalking page for the download, and return it with a cheque for £20 made payable to BASC. Please do not forget to indicate whether morning or afternoon would be preferred.

If you are not able to attend the October assessment but would like to attend the next assessment in early 2009, please let us know.

Finally, we understand this is going to be inconvenient for several of you, we have done our best to ease the situation as much as possible, but we have no choice other than to agree these new rules as laid down by the NRA and MoD.

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