Club News

2021 News

3rd July - First Club Induction for close to two years

In the first of 2 small covid induction training sessions held today, and the first induction since Autumn 2019, another 6 new members were inducted into BARPC. We welcome back Stuart Pinkney who has rejoined the club after a 7 year break and new members Andrew Marklew, David Wells, Douglas Millard, Norman Morris and Kris Zywczyk who all signed up after in some cases being on the waiting list for over 15 months . Junior Poppy Mash joined her father member Reece Mann too. 

Another Covid Induction is planned in late July in order to reduce the waiting list especially for those waiting over 6 months - 18 months.

Richard Newcombe
Membership Secretary

Early Days and Memories

As a founding member of the club back in 1975, I can still remember the inaugural events that started BARPC on the road to one of the longest established dedicated airgun in the country. From humble but exciting beginnings at the Drill Hall in Penrith Road shooting at 6 yards with a Webley Hawk MK2 as a junior member to the clubs first competition at the old Harp Lager brewery as it was then in Alton, for a shoulder to shoulder competition. Moving to a new venue at May Place in the town (This had heating!) and climbing the stairs to our “new range” and the tea and biscuits always on hand. I am sure we did other competitions and had guest clubs visiting our range but those memories are much more hazy. I remember being allowed to try some of the “proper” target rifles and indeed pistols that our older and “wage earning” members owned and thinking wow, these are good but as a 15/16 year old, pocket money didn’t stretch to Originals and FWB’s etc. Who knows, if I had had a more accurate gun and probably much more ability, I may not have been swayed by other interests including sub-aqua diving, water polo and motorbikes and left the club for many years before returning in 1998.

I do remember a brief visit in-between one morning or afternoon around 1980 or ’81 to see what a friend of mine was getting up to with my old Hawk that I had lent him at this outdoor shooting club at the Walled Garden to see what it was all about and I do remember being welcomed by Derek who remembered me along with a couple of the other original members whose names I could no longer recall. I remember watching people shooting at targets sat in between rows of cabbages and sprouts as the garden was very much an allotment type layout back then. I don’t think I realised that this was the days of BODS or Basingstoke Outdoor Shooters and the start of FT as we now it now. What an opportunity I missed.

It was then something of a surprise to receive an email completely out of the blue at the beginning of June (2021) from a chap along with 3 photos and a brief introduction. I’ve enclosed Johns email unchanged and the pictures which I hope bring as much pleasure to other members both past and current as they provide an insight to where we started all those years ago. Indeed if you a member or past member of BARPC/BODS or any club and you’ve shot at Basingstoke, we would love to hear from you along with any memorabilia, photos or photo’s of trophies won that you have lurking around in a dark place or still sat proudly on the mantelpiece.

Bob Ward. Secretary

Hi, I am sorry that I do not know your committee members names. I was going through some of my shooting items and came across these. It occurred to me that it is 40 years, almost to the month, since the first Field Target Shoot in your delightful walled garden. I have many happy memories of that shoot, possibly because I won it, somewhat surprisingly, considering the talent on hand. I together with my regular shooting partner also came second in the team competition. This was a great surprise to my partner as he didn't realise he was supposed to be shooting competitively. From memory the winning team was led by John Whiscombe, using his own design rifle. Shooting at a wonderful venue, with such a friendly and professional group of club members was a delight.

I do not usually keep targets, but my Rat target surprised me and some others. Having this target at ground level in the grass was certainly a challenge. I was annoyed at myself for snatching one shot and only getting a 9! The trophy was and is the most amusing and unique that I have. It certainly raised some comments, at the time. I hope that you enjoy the pictures. Wishing you and all your members all the very best for the future.

Regards, John Poole


Pretty impressive shooting in 1981 with a Feinwerkbau 300SU 10 metre target rifle. John says "it was all very new and people were shooting all sorts. All my shooting after that was with the Feinwerkbau 124, I think that back in the day, I could have shot the rat target with either. No chance nowadays"


John’s trophy showing the early club logo design and the base to the right

I replied to John and updated him on the club and recent events and he very kindly elaborated with further details…

I shot competitively for several years, with knockdown targets, having a number fun shoots around the country. I enjoyed Bisley a lot for it's historic associations. I stopped competitions when the need for more advanced guns, to stay competitive, meant that the cost of new guns, versus enjoyment, no longer balanced. As the 80's progressed the manufacturers and tuners were essentially entering works teams. I do still follow developments in airgun shooting.

Also shooting was just one of my many hobbies. I was very involved with a mountaineering club at the time, committee work, meets organising, which meant weekends were very full. It was nice to read of Basingstoke’s 40th anniversary. My mountaineering club is 50 years old in 2024. We still have current members from that time and about 20+ friends from the clubs early days who are not current members but who still meet up. I am fortunate that although I live in London, I do have a garden, so I still shoot reasonably regularly. I still have about half a dozen guns, but my Feinwerkbau 124, 177 cal. gets used the most. It feels like a very well loved friend.

When the current situation is over, or calmed down a lot, it would be nice to meet up, perhaps at the walled garden. The original shoot, was as follows; all the targets were at the same distance, making things easier.

Qualifying, the usual yellow stickers, three shots on target in 5 mins, from memory. I started the mind games straight away, just putting 3 pellets in front of me, not a tin full like most. Took three shots, didn't wait to see the score, just got up and waited for the start. Another few similar lanes, followed by the infamous Rat Target. The regulars, up till then, were all putting up perfects. The rat scores were announced target by target 2, 5, 0, 7, 12, that got a round of applause, 49, silence, a request for the score again and could they see the target.

Then a rotating rabbit and in due course the running boar. The running boar was very hard, as no one had practiced on it and the speed was awkward. I was overjoyed with a score of 12, I didn't think that I would hit it at all. The scores went up on the chalk board. It was fun listening to people asking who I was, all the other names at the top were well known, from both competitions and magazine articles.

I think that it was a fun time to be involved, at the start of a sport. Shooting some of Johns guns was great fun, but I wouldn't have wanted to carry some of them all day. The introduction of knockdown targets and the variation of distances, shooting positions, the first shoot where it was required to take a shot from a tree, was fun. It is a shame that we didn't have phones, digital cameras, etc. as there was not much photography going on. Airgun World did a small write up of the shoot, but no pictures. At the time it was one of the most important shoots around, with people from all over England and a few from Wales and Scotland. All the top shots were there. Here's to when we can meet up, in person.

My regards and very best wishes to you, the committee and your members,

John Poole.

I have assured John he will be most welcome to come along and see us at the club whenever he is able.

18th May EOVH News

Great news we can announce that EOVH is open again for Current Members Only

16th May Popham Round 2 FT shoot

Nice shoot for Group 1 who managed to get their shoot in before the heavy rain came in. Although it was round 2 of the FT, some members took the opportunity of practicing their HFT skills, with Simon bringing his new EDgun Leshiy, among yet another amazing bluebell display




2nd May Popham Round 1 HFT shoot

Lovely shoot in the woods for round one of the HFT 2021 Club League as well as a open practice shot for the FT members to get practice in for their next round in a few weeks. The bluebells were out in full beauty and I do not think I have seen them looking so good before
 




29th March 2021

BARPC Committee are please to be able to re-open the Walled Garden and Popham Woods for current fully paid up club Members. EOVH remains closed for now

4th Jan 2021

Sadly the first posting in the 2021 news is to tell every one ALL ranges are yet again closed.  The Government announcement from today stated that
Sports and physical activity

Indoor gyms and sports facilities will remain closed. Outdoor sports courts, outdoor gyms, golf courses, outdoor swimming pools, archery/driving/shooting ranges and riding arenas must also close. Organised outdoor sport for disabled people is allowed to continue.

As such the committee have had to comply and close all BARPC ranges again

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