Following the recent government announcement, there has been some confusion about what effect it will have on shooting clubs.
The main points are:
- The new restrictions apply to adults only, indoor only, and team sport only.
- They do not apply to exercise or individual sports.
- Training can continue in groups but not more than 6.
- Multiple groups can continue to participate indoors if in groups of 6 or less, and no mingling.
This means that individuals coming to the range to shoot can continue to do so.
As they are individuals and are not mingling with others, the numbers that can take part are defined by the space that is available that allows for a spacing of greater than 2m to maintain social distancing throughout. This will obviously depend on the number of firing points, physical space in club rooms etc. that are available. Make sure you implement your clubs risk assessment, and the rules that originate from it and relate to your particular circumstances. Please ensure you continue to follow the Government guidance, local regulations and the NSRA Guidance.
The rule of six is more applicable to groups training together e.g. if a squad or training group get together at a range then there can only be six in one group. They should still socially distance and observe all the current rules for shooting at the range. If the range is big enough there is nothing to prevent multiple groups of six in the facility – but the groups must not mingle with each other.
In many ways the issue for us really is not the actual shooting – which is separate, spaced, relatively easy to control and maintain a safe environment. The problem is many people go to socialise and that is what we cannot do right now. There is generally more risk from the social aspect of shooting than the activity itself. Shoot and go home is the mantra we need to follow.