BASC has been confirmed as one of four organisations whose training courses are approved by the Home Office and Ministry of Defence, opening the way for more involvement in firearms training for the Cadet Forces.
The move follows a letter from BASC Chief Executive Richard Ali to Anna Soubry MP, recently appointed Minister of State at the Ministry of Defence. The letter challenged an order which appeared to state that only CPSA qualifications can be recognised for cadet training.
The Ministry of Defence has now confirmed that cadets can be trained in shotgun safety and clay target shooting by holders of the appropriate training awards from BASC, CPSA, the Services Clay Target Shooting Association or the UK Practical Shooting Association.
Gary Ashton, Director of Sporting Services at BASC, said: “We welcome this clarification that the BASC shotgun coaching and related awards are recognised and sanctioned by the Home Office and MoD. This means that many more people will be able to offer coaching and training opportunities to our cadet forces.”
Duncan Greaves, BASC Council member and accredited shotgun coach, said: “We have an ongoing programme of involvement with the cadet forces and we are pleased and proud to be able to support the young people involved.”
Alan Booth, BASC firearms officer, is also a senior figure in the Air Cadets in North-West England. He said: “This clarification means we will be able to offer more training to more cadets with BASC-accredited shotgun coaches. I have been clay shooting with cadets since 2005. We shoot usually once a month with cadets aged from 13 to 20 from Merseyside.
“We also hosted clay shoots for cadets at the RAF Shawbury annual camp where we coached cadets from across the UK. In early August, as part of the International Air Cadet Exchange, we coached cadets from Canada, USA, Germany, Belgium, Holland, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong and South Korea. I am always impressed by the dedication and enthusiasm of these young people and look forward to expanding the shotgun coaching programme.”
Pictured is BASC’s Alan Booth coaching an air cadet.