Ladies in the Line – Ali Valentine

A lady once gasped at me in passing, “I don’t rate your logo…” she continued; “we women don’t stand behind our husbands on shoot day…we SHOOT!”
As she walked off unwilling to listen to my response, and not realising that she was speaking to a 33 year old fellow lady shot who has been pulling the trigger since the age of 8, I felt she was off to burn her bra!

Now, let me explain. I think it is nothing short of fantastic that we women are now found in the line along with our male counterparts wielding shotgun rather than applying lipstick (although I think both together is rather fabulous!) but what she was forgetting was that my logo, to which she was referring, is a rather lovely take on shooting during Edwardian times, an era when hardly any women were pilots, event riders, huntsmen or participants in any other male dominated sport.

The logo reminds me of when I first started out shooting. The difference back then? I was in the line of Guns while the other ladies stood behind. The line was dominated by men and with only the comfort of my father’s excellence behind me, I used to long for a lady shot to appear for like-minded company. It is so brilliant that today tells a very different story and we owe it to syndicates such as The Shotgun and Chelsea Bun Club and Femmes Fatales to name a couple, for their input in promoting both clay and live quarry shooting among women.

I started ‘Ladies in the Line’ some four years ago as an annual event to entertain ladies out in the field at our shooting ground in Llanbedrog, North Wales. The Bob Valentine Shooting School, established in 1986 by my father Bob has become renowned for high standards and the upholding of our sporting traditions.

I feel it is important to host ladies’ days as it offers women the opportunity to have a go at a sport they may not otherwise think about trying when in the company of men. Too many times have we witnessed ladies arriving at the shoot room with their male counterparts only to declare they are “not here to shoot, just watch”…and often the reason why?… “I had a go once using my spouse’s gun and cartridges…” enough said!

Here at the shooting school we use soft shooting cartridges with minimal recoil to preserve the shoulder, (after all, we don’t need a sledge hammer to crack a nut). Time is spent in the shoot room before you head out to the ground to ensure you have a gun that fits. You wouldn’t consider skiing down the black run using the skis belonging to your husband, so why should it be that you use his gun? Fit is vital and alongside this comes style. All top sports people have perfected their play with a sense of style and timing. One we have selected a gun to fit you it is important you hold and mount it correctly… all of this we take time to polish before we take you to shoot.

This year sees Ladies in the Line in its fifth year and it has generated quite some following. This special day is geared to accommodate both experienced and those totally new to shooting. Experienced shots can get stuck into a 70-bird competition, with a 100-bird team flush to finish, while the novices can benefit from top class coaching, shooting easy targets with soft recoiling cartridges using a gun that fits.

Plenty of prizes will be available, with the top gun taking away a weekend driving experience of the new and outstanding Velar Range Rover . The ‘Best Improver’ from the beginners group will be awarded with a weekend driving experience of the Range Rover Evoque… now, that’s something to get nervous about!

Book your entry now on this exclusive ladies’ event and maybe recommend it to a friend. Entries are limited to 30 Guns, so don’t miss out.

Please visit www.theshootingschool.com/events for further info on how to book in or call

Ali Valentine on 07971332 539 alternatively email on av@alivalentine.co.uk

 

 

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