Shooting organisations expressed shock, sadness and sympathy for the victims of last week’s massacre in Cumbria that left 12 people dead and 25 in hospital. BASC’s Simon Clarke reflected the views of the whole of the shooting community when he commented: “The events in Cumbria are tragic and shocking and as representatives of Britain’s lawful gun owners BASC would like to make clear its deeply felt sorrow at these events which will have long-lasting repercussions within the affected families and communities.”

Derrick Bird killed his victims and himself using legitimately held firearms. He had been a shotgun and firearms certificate holder for 20 years and it is thought that he used a shotgun and a .22 rifle in the attack. Police are currently investigating his access to firearms and the motivations for his actions. Shooting organisations have welcomed the Government’s call to wait until inquiries are complete before considering any changes to firearms legislation. Speaking at Downing Street soon after the event, the Prime Minister cautioned against “knee-jerk” demands for tougher gun laws. His comments came after Home Secretary Theresa May made a statement in which she

said: “It would be wrong to react before we know the full facts.”

The rest of this article appears in 9th June issue of Shooting Times.

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