Gun dealers warned over Islamic State threat

The police have asked registered firearms dealers to be extra vigilant after an online magazine published by Islamic State advised would-be terrorists to acquire guns from gun shops by force. A letter to dealers from Assistant Chief Constable Dave Orford, the National Police Chiefs Council lead for firearms licensing, stressed…

Sir Nicholas Soames

Interview with Sir Nicholas Soames, Conservative MP for Mid Sussex

Sir Nicholas Soames reaches into his pocket and pulls out a box of matches. I wait for the cigar to follow. It would suit him, sitting there, statesmanlike in a dark blue double-breasted suit. Instead, he lights a scented candle on the table, leans back in his chair, and says:…

Lapwing

£100k for Humber wildlife

Barton on Humber Wildfowlers Club has secured a £100,000 loan from the Wildlife Habitat Charitable Trust (WHCT) to turn 16 acres of arable farmland into wetland habitat to benefit species including lapwing, golden plover and redshank. The club, which marks its 50th anniversary this year, plans to purchase 15.82 acres…

Scotland Yard

Met hands over gun owners’ home addresses

Home addresses of around 30,000 London firearm and shotgun owners have been handed over to external marketing agencies by the Metropolitan Police in what BASC described as a “potentially serious breach of trust”. The shooting organisation has contacted Met Commissioner Cressida Dick to question this apparent breach of the Data…

Conservation on grouse moors

Police donation to BASC funds school trips on grouse moors

North Yorkshire Police has donated £3,000 to BASC, which will be used to enable hundreds of primary school children to experience first-hand the work done on conservation on grouse moors and 
to meet the people who do it. The grant came from the Police Property Fund, which turns unreturnable stolen…

Man shooting semi auto

A victory for common sense over EU gun laws

These proposals have been under consideration and ongoing debate for more than two years and originally included changes criticised as unnecessarily restrictive. Plans to tighten European gun laws were made following the shootings at the Charlie Hebdo offices in Paris in January 2015, but were brought forward by the European…

Cubs and scouts try their hand at wildfowl conservation

The youngsters, all from London-based groups, had a go at building mallard nesting tubes and heard about the role wildfowlers play in duck conservation and habitat restoration. Dan Reynolds, BASC south-east director, hosted two events for the London-based youngsters, in which he explained how duck nest tubes have been shown…

houses of parliament

Tories say STOP! to anti-shooting foundation

The chairman of the Conservative Party, the Rt Hon Sir Patrick McLoughlin MP, has told the anti-shooting Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation (CAWF) to stop using the party logo and to limit its operations. The CAWF drew criticism after it urged the Government to launch a review of the shooting of birds…

Firearms licensing still a “postcode lottery”

The 2015 Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary (HMIC) report Targeting the risk concluded that the application of firearms licensing in England and Wales is “inconsistent and inadequate” with a wide variation in the amount of time it takes to grant and renew a certificate. Shooting Times took a look at…

Fieldsports marquée

BBC bias against fieldsports could go unopposed

Changes to the BBC complaints procedure could lead to continued bias against fieldsports from its shows and presenters, say shooting groups. In the past year, the BBC has come under fire from the rural community several times. An October episode of Inside Out London presented a biased depiction of gamebird rearing that did not show best practice, presented…

League Against Cruel Sports claims shooting industry to blame for bird flu outbreak

Eduardo Goncalves, LACS chief executive, said the outbreaks were “inevitable” because “the number of birds used by the shooting industry each year is a disaster waiting to happen. More pheasants and partridges are bred to be shot each year than the combined number of turkeys and duck killed for the table, but…

Shooters eating lunch

Shooting sports make huge contribution to rural economy

Shooting and countryside organisations have highlighted the important role that the shooting and farming industries play in supporting rural tourism. A number of groups gave evidence to the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (EFRA) committee inquiry into tourism’s role in supporting rural growth in England last month. Vital source of income for rural business The committee is also examining issues…

Lady Bathurst

Countess faces lengthy wait for gun licence and brands £40 GP fee a “disgrace”

Many shooters have long been aware that the time it takes to receive a new shotgun certificate depends on where they live. Now Establishment figures, like MP Ian Liddell Grainger and Lady Bathurst, High Sheriff of Gloucestershire, are being affected too and voicing their complaints in the media. GPs struggling…

Ian Liddell-Grainger with David Cameron

MP forgets to renew firearms licence and is ‘appalled’ at new issue time

The MP has accused Avon and Somerset police of ‘utter incompetence’ after learning it will take a minimum of 16 weeks for a new issue although he was sent a courtesy reminder by the force that the certificate for his rifles and shotguns had expired. Mr Liddell-Grainer commented: “Forgetting to…

deerstalkers with deer

Lords pass “very helpful” changes to firearms laws

Shooting organisations have welcomed two improvements to firearms law passed last week by the House of Lords and adopted by the Government as amendments to the Policing and Crime Bill. The first of these changes permits an eight-week extension to the life of a firearms certificate so long as renewal documents were submitted eight weeks ahead of its expiry date.…

Mark Osborne William Powell

Mark Osborne of William Powell in the hot seat

Mark Osborne was interviewed for the October 2016 issue of Shooting Gazette. Have you been out relentlessly since the Twelfth? “I was out on the Twelfth and have been out a fair bit since as we keep going as long as we need. As well as letting days, we also manage quite…

Halloween

Rural groups share their trick-or-treats

While the queue of trick-or- treaters at your door might cause a restless evening on Halloween, leading countryside representatives say there are bigger issues to lose sleep over. Shooting Times asked them what their own trick-or-treats would be and what issues are currently keeping them up in the middle of…

men shooting

Do I need special insurance to go shooting?

Q: Do I need special insurance to go shooting? I’m a bit confused by all this liability stuff… A: I have always thought it completely extraordinary that it is a legal requirement to be insured while driving a car but not while using a gun. But that is the case. That said, no responsible person would ever shoot without…

dog tail injury

Scotland drops its ban on tail docking

Holyrood has announced plans to change tail docking legislation to allow the tails of spaniel and hunt, point, retrieve (HPR) puppies to be shortened wherever a vet believes they are likely to be used as a working dog and risk serious tail injury in later life. Tail docking was banned in Scotland in 2007 as part of…

Fox snaring code

Rural groups take lead on new fox snaring code

Leading rural organisations last week launched a new code of practice on the use of snares for fox control in England. The newly published 12-page code is a collaboration between BASC, the Countryside Alliance, the Moorland Association, the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation (NGO), the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, the CLA,…