We constantly get asked by both Police forces and members for suitable wording for shotguns on FACs. We have suggested the following wording to the Home Office:
The shotguns to which this certificate relates may be used in recognised practical target shooting disciplines, as a member of a relevant club or recognised association and where the holder has permission to shoot with that class of firearm.
The 12 gauge solid slug ammunition to which this certificate relates shall be used only on ranges in respect of which a range safety certificate specifically authorises use of same or on other land over which the holder has permission to shoot with that class of firearm and ammunition type.
Regarding amounts of slug: we suggest 300 held, 250 to buy.
Amount of cartridges must allow for:
If you also want to use your S1 SG for clay shooting you must get this purpose added.
Do you have a condition similar to this on your FAC?
"over a course of fire approved by a duly qualified member of the United Kingdom Practical Shooting Association on land over which the holder has permission to shoot for that purpose with that class of firearm."
Despite our recommendation (see following extracts of letter to the FCC, particularly point 15) some Police Forces are still putting the above condition on individual FACs. As members do, therefore, require a definition of a 'duly qualified member' the UKPSA Council's definition is:
"A qualified UKPSA member is a person, who by dint of their unstinting service to the UKPSA has been granted Life membership, or has paid for Life membership, and that this has not been revoked by the UKPSA Executive Council or someone who has completed, and has had accepted, a membership application form with the appropriate joining fee, has paid the current year's fee and has not had their membership revoked by the UKPSA Executive Council."
To make the UKPSA's position on this totally unambiguous, the UKPSA remit does not extend to approving cof's at club level and this condition is not accepted nor supported by the UKPSA in any interpretation that implies that the UKPSA is responsible for cof's at club level.
The UKPSA does not have a specific training course for cof approval at any level. Graded Match cof's are approved by a process and this process would not be applicable, nor would it be appropriate, at club level.
Our view is that this condition means that any UKPSA member can approve a cof at club level but this approval is not accepted nor sanctioned by the UKPSA. It can also be interpreted that a cof that has been 'approved' for club level use by a UKPSA member, or used in a graded match or training course, can be replicated by non-members for use, even when a UKPSA member may not be present.
It should also be noted that perfectly acceptable and safe courses of fire may be devised for target practice, including those used in UKPSA training courses, that may not be suitable for incorporation within a graded match.
Essex Police have taken the initiative and produced a guideline document - PSG: A Basic Overview and Policy on 'Good Reason' - which should give, if generally adopted, a consistency hitherto lacking. Whilst we do not agree with all the interpretations it does provide a framework which should not detract from the operation of the sport. Specifically see point 4.2.
The following letter was in response to the two GCN members of the FCC reopening 'good reason' for multi-shot shotguns.
15th April 1999
GOOD REASON FOR SECTION 1 LARGE MAGAZINE CAPACITY SHOTGUNS FOR TARGET SHOOTING
We are in receipt of a fax from Mr Richard Worth, Secretary to the Firearms Consultative Committee, dated 6th April regarding the subject of Practical Shotgun and whether or not it should remain "good reason" for the possession of a Section 1 shotgun.
1990 - Section 5.2
1991 - Section 6.4
1998 - Section 11.9
In all of the above reports it is clearly stated that Practical Target Shooting constitutes "good reason".
"The Committee welcomes the decision by the Home Office and the police to accept membership of a relevant organisation (in practice, the U.K. Practical Shooting Association) as "good reason to possess a large magazine shotgun. The Committee believes that further discussion between the police, the Home Departments and the UKPSA would be helpful in establishing the scope of suitable shooting disciplines and to ensure that proper regulation of practical shooting continues to develop."
This statement, we believe, strongly underlines and supports the development of responsible practical shotgun shooting in this country. We would welcome the suggestion of further discussion with the Home Office and other relevant bodies.
There are other organisations and bodies that have an interest in practical target shooting. As we are generally unfamiliar with their activities we cannot comment on their operations. We can only draw parallels in other disciplines using other reputable organisations. A shooter may wish to shoot clay pigeon and may choose BASC to be his representative association instead of the CPSA. At the moment, because of restrictive conditions being placed on Firearms Certificates by some police forces, they are forcing certificate holders to join the UKPSA. Whilst the Association always welcomes new members, we feel that it is better to attract voluntary members rather than forcing people to join our Association for whatever reason. Our existing members are committed to an Association that promotes an extensive competition calendar and in the ethos of UKPSA/IPSC Practical Shooting.
We feel that it may be prudent to suggest some alternatively worded conditions that may be imposed on the use of Section 1 shotguns for practical target shooting. The existing conditions used by many police forces are almost unworkable. Take, for example, the condition ???. "over a course of fire approved by a duly qualified member of the United Kingdom Practical Shooting Association on land over which the holder has permission to shoot for that purpose with that class of firearm." ???. You will note from our enclosed documents that there is no such thing as an approved course of fire except at Level 2 and above National League Competitions. Therefore this condition effectively makes it impossible to practice Practical Shotgun as a member of a club and would only allow the certificate holder to compete in competitions. In effect, this clause does not work. Our suggestions are as follows :
"The 12 gauge solid slug ammunition to which this certificate relates shall be used only on ranges in respect of which a range safety certificate specifically authorises use of same or on other land over which the holder has permission to shoot with that class of firearm and ammunition type."
Whilst live quarry shooting does not form any part of our interest and discipline as an association, we unhesitatingly endorse the use of Section 1 shotguns for pest and predator control. Additionally we see no reason to restrict their use to specific activities and believe that other additional uses, e.g. Clay Target Shooting, should be permitted.
Should you require any further information or feel that a face to face meeting may be beneficial, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Graham Gill F.Inst. S.M., M.C.F.A.
United Kingdom Practical Shooting Association
We are now getting feedback from members on the sort of questions that are being asked, and the general direction of the inquiries, at home visits for FAC/SGC renewal, grant or variation.
No great surprises and unlikely to cause difficulties - unless you are a drug dealing alcoholic wife beater who keeps his guns under the bed and uses car headlights for target practice. Ah!
To the boring bits:
All convictions must be disclosed even including minor traffic offences.
The officer will be taking a view as to whether you will be a danger to the public, that you of sound mind, that you do not drink to excess or take drugs and that generally you are the sort of person who can be trusted with guns.
You will have to provide good reason for each gun and you may be asked for this in writing if you have, or wish to acquire, more than four guns.
Your pattern of ammunition purchase will be examined, so your good reason can be demonstrated, and you may be questioned on home loading. If you wish to acquire levels of over 500, this will be questioned as to the reason.
You will be questioned over the land where you shoot (if applicable) and that you have suitable permission and the land may be checked for its suitability. You will be asked if you are a full member of a Home Office approved club. That club's shooting disciplines will be checked, as will your membership, and that you are generally a good egg.
For SGCs, good reason will be checked - the land, membership of a clay pigeon club and the details of SGs possessed will be noted.
Security - gun cabinets or alternatives, general security and cabinet locations, ammo storage, alarm - central station or not. If 10+ guns then they do rather like alarms. You should also note that no other member of your household should have access to your firearms. That especially means they should not be told where the keys to the cabinets are kept.
They will check to see that referees are fit and proper and that they fully appreciate their commitment.
The officer, as you would hope from a trained professional, will be observant. Your domestic circumstances, personal history, friends, firearms experience, gun handling and general attitude and whether you were helpful; all will be noted.
Info here on the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003: Firearms
Our Employer's Liability Certificate and the Policy document can be found here.
The brokers are Endsleigh.
The name of the Association shall be the United Kingdom Practical Shooting Association, hereinafter referred to as the Association.
The object of the Association shall be to encourage skill in Practical Shooting by providing instruction and practice in the use of firearms amongst Her Majesty's subjects so that they will be better fitted to serve their country in the Armed Forces, Territorial Army or any other organisation in which their services may be required in the defence of the realm.
In furtherance of the above object but not otherwise the Association shall have the following powers:
Membership of the Association shall be open to persons or bodies interested in furthering the object of the Association or participating in its organisation but no person or body shall be a member unless his or her or its membership has been accepted by the Council who shall have an absolute discretion not to accept any person or body as a member without giving any reason therefor.
The Council shall have the right, for good and sufficient reason, to terminate the membership of any individual or organisation and may by resolution communicated to any member in writing and stating the grounds for which it proposes to act call upon that member to resign from the Association. The member in question shall have the right to attend and be heard by the Council before a final decision is made. If the member does not attend and will not resign within forty-eight days after being so called upon, the Council may by resolution terminate the membership.
The Annual Meeting of Members shall be held at the National Meeting or at such time and place as may be fixed by Council.
The Secretary shall submit Council's report and the Treasurer shall read the audited balance sheet.
The Secretary shall, upon the written request of at least ten percent of the elected membership of the Association, call an Extraordinary General Meeting of the Association and shall give at least twenty-one days notice of same. The Agenda of the Extraordinary General Meeting shall be circulated with the notice and no subjects other than those thereon shall be discussed.
Amendment of the Constitution may be made either at an Annual General Meeting or at an Extraordinary General Meeting. Suggested amendments which are to be submitted to an Annual General Meeting shall be forwarded to the Secretary in writing sixty days prior to such meeting. Amendment by means of Extraordinary General Meeting shall be conducted according to the provisions of Article VI. In order to be carried, a proposal for amendment must be agreed by a two-thirds majority of the members present and voting provided that no amendment shall be made to Article II, Article XXIII or this article, and no amendment shall be made the effect of which would cause the Association to cease to be a Charity in law.
The Officers of the Association shall comprise: a President, Vice-Presidents, a Chairman, a Director, a Secretary, a Treasurer, a Public Relations Officer, Regional Organisers and their Deputies.
The Chairman may vote only in case of a tie, in which case he has a casting vote.
The Management of the Association shall be controlled by a Council which shall consist of: the Chairman, the Director, the Secretary, the Treasurer, the Public Relations Officer and the Regional Organisers or their nominees.
Council may by resolution, passed by not less than two-thirds of the members present and voting, appoint any person to the offices or President, Vice-President, Regional Organiser, National Coach, etc.
Council may create, sub-divide, amalgamate or alter the boundaries of the Association's geographical sub-divisions.
Council shall be the sole authority for the interpretation of the Constitution and all byelaws, rules or regulations made thereunder, and the decision of Council on any question of interpretation, or upon any matter effecting the Association and not provided for by these rules shall be final and binding upon all members, but subject to appeal to any General Meeting.
Council shall have the power to legislate on any matter not provided for in the Constitution, and to promulgate such byelaws, rules and regulations as it may feel necessary or desirable.
The Officer in charge of the range may be an officer of the Association, a U.K.P.S.A. qualified coach, an officer of any club approved by the Association or a member of an approved club elected by general consent to act for a group of clubs using the range at one time. The officer in charge of the range will always have the power to refuse permission to shoot with any weapon or equipment which he considers unsuitable, or to any shooter whose conduct he considers unsafe.
Council shall draw up Range Rules which shall govern the conduct of shooting on any range. These rules should conform to those laid down by the I.P.S.C.. The officers of the Association shall be responsible for the strict enforcement of these rules, as well as any which may be in application at ranges under military control. Only weapons and ammunition suitable for the range in use shall be used.
Visitors may be invited to shoots by members of the Association with the sanction of a Regional Organiser or other officer of the Association, and such visitors shall automatically become members of the Association for that day.
The financial year of the Association shall be from 1 April to the following 31 March.
The Association shall pay the necessary premiums to effect the cover of third party claims and to provide an indemnity in respect of legal liability for accidents resulting in bodily injury or damage to property arising on any range or at any club premises. The policy shall indemnify:
The Association shall also effect the Insurance of any trophies owned by the Association together with any equipment or property of the Association, as well as any items the Association may hold on loan, which it may be considered desirable to insure.
By acceptance of membership in the Association, every member is deemed fully and absolutely to indemnify the Association and Council against any claims for injury or loss however caused to or by himself, his family or his servants, at any shooting or other event organised by the Association.
The Association may be terminated, by resolution at a General Meeting. A resolution of termination must be carried by not less than seventy-five percent of the voting members present.
After the satisfaction of all debts and liabilities, should there remain any property whatsoever, this shall not be distributed amongst the members but shall be given or transferred to a charitable organisation or charitable organisations having similar objects.
NB Text current February, 1982, incorporating amendments passed or ratified by the 1980 and 1981 General Meetings of the Association.
The UKPSA is the governing body for practical shooting within the UK and is the recognised 'Region' of the world wide body, the International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC).
The UKPSA is a charitable organisation, which is governed by its constitution. This sets out the aims and objections of the Association, and lays down the responsibilities of ruling Council.
A Council governs the UKPSA and meets on at least on four occasions in a year. The council is made up five annually elected positions plus others who are appointed by the elected officers. The elected positions consist of a Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, Public Relations Officer and a Regional Director. The later is the UKPSA's representative to the IPSC.
Other positions on Council include President, Vice President, Discipline Representatives and Membership Secretary. Plus the heads of the Training Sub Committee and National Range Officer's Institute. The UK is divided up into five regions and each has a Regional Organiser sitting on Council.
A full list of Council members and their contact details is provided at ……Link to Council members.
Clubs with an interest in practical may become affiliated to the UKPSA. These are spread throughout the UK. …….. Link to Club Finder
Affiliated clubs are approved to run matches on behalf of the UKPSA. IPSC recognise various levels of matches. All levels must fully comply with the current IPSC Rule Book. Levels 1 – 3 are held within the UK and must comply with the UKPSA Match Directors Handbook.
Level 1 This is also known as an ungraded or club match. This level of match is open to any person, and consists of at least two stages. The course of fire does not have to be approved.
Level 2 A match that is approved by the UKPSA Council and is run by an affiliated club. It is open only to current UKPSA members who have a competition licence for the practical discipline being shot. The Course of Fire must be passed by the UKPSA Course Reviewer.
Level 3 Also known as a Championship match in the UKPSA, it should consist of at least 12 stages. As well as being approved by the UKPSA the match is sanctioned by the IPSC President and the IPSC Course Reviewer must pass the Course of Fire. Again this match is only open to UKPSA members with a competition licence. UKPSA members may also travel abroad to participate in L3 matches with the approval of the Regional Director.
Level 4 These are known as Area or Continental Championships, such as the European Championships. This level of match and course of Fire can only be sanctioned by IPSC. These are normally held over 3 – 4 days and consist of at least 20 stages. Each Region (Country) is allocated places for the match. UKPSA members may participate with the approval of the Regional Director.
Level 5 This is the World Championship level of matches and are normally held on a three year cycle. These matches are again sanctioned by IPSC and consist of at least 25 stages and can be held over 4 –5 days.
Due to the dynamic style of practical shooting, a duly qualified range official supervises all shooter action. This is always conducted on a one to one basis.
All range officials have to qualify by attending and passing a two day range officers course, known as a Seminar. After they qualify as a range Officer and with match experience and attendance at further seminars, they may move up the ranks to Chief Range Officer and eventually Range Master.
Range Officer (RO)
Issues range commands, oversees competitor compliance with the written stage briefing and closes monitors safe competitor action. They also declare the time, the scores and penalties achieved by each competitor.
Chief Range Officer (CRO)
The CRO is the primary authority over all persons and activities in the courses of fire under their control, and oversees the fair, correct and consistent application of the rules.
Stats Officer (SO)
The Stats officer collates, sorts and verifies all score sheets and ultimately produces provisional and final results.
Range Master (RM)
The Range Master has overall authority over all persons and activities within the entire range, including, range safety, the operation of all courses of fire and application of the rules.
Match Director (MD)
The match Director handles overall match administration, including squadding, scheduling, range construction, plus the co-ordination of all support staff and the provision of services.
All range officials in the UK are members of the National Range Officers Institute (NROI), which oversees the qualification and ongoing training for its members. Some range officials aspire to international duties and are members of IROA …..link to IROA and are selected to officiate at Level 3, 4 and 5 matches any where in the world.
So What Do Match Officials Do?
Successful matches do not just happen.
They are the result of a lot of work by often a very few people.
If we look at the definitions of roles in the IPSC rule we see.
7.1. Match Officials
The duties and terms of reference of Match Officials are defined as follows:
7.1.1. Range Officer ("RO")
The RO issues range commands, oversees competitor compliance with the written stage briefing and closely monitors safe competitor action. He also declares the time; scores and penalties achieved by each competitor and verifies that these are correctly recorded on the competitor's score sheet (under the authority of a Chief Range Officer and Range Master).
7.1.2. Chief Range Officer ("CRO")
The CRO is the primary authority over all persons and activities in the courses of fire under his control, and oversees the fair, correct and consistent application of these rules (under the authority of the Range Master).
7.1.3. Stats Officer ("SO")
The SO collects, sorts, verifies, tabulates and retains all score sheets and ultimately produces provisional and final results. Any incomplete or inaccurate score sheets must be promptly referred to the Range Master (under direct authority of the Range Master).
7.1.4. Quartermaster ("QM")
The QM distributes, repairs and maintains all range equipment (e.g. targets,patches, paint, props etc.), Range Officer appliances (e.g. timers, batteries,staplers, staples, clipboards etc.) and Range Officer rations (under direct authority of the Range Master).
7.1.5. Range Master ("RM")
The RM has overall authority over all persons and activities within the entire range, including range safety, the operation of all courses of fire and the application of these rules. All match disqualifications and appeals to arbitration must be brought to his attention. The Range Master is usually appointed by and works with the Match Director, however, in respect of IPSC sanctioned Level IV or higher matches, the appointment of the Range Master is subject to the prior written approval of the IPSC Executive Council
Regrettably there is no official definition for the various helpers, who patch, reset, fetch and carry to support the match.
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