FAC 1st Applicaton, Target Shooting. Open Ticket????
Quick question folks...
I've had my SGC for years now.
Am a member at a Home-Office Approved rifle range, and have been for about 3yrs. I just use the club Rifles.
I also have permission to shoot over land on a few of the local farms with my shotgun.
I'm sure we all have farmers who we're closest to than others (mine all get a bottle of single malt of me every Xmas either way!)
Anyway, I mentioned to my very friendly and accomodating farmer (he truely is a superb chap, bent over backwards for me - simple stuff like on one occasion truding out over his muddy field to bring me some straw to stand on to keep the cold off my feet, after he saw me walking over without any after I forgot once - not to protect his land (there was nowt growing) - he just didn't want me freezing out there in the depths of winter!)
that I wanted to put in for my FAC.
He said he'd gladly counter-sign it, and give me permission for his land.
He said it's already been signed-off for a .22RF (he has one himself).
But here's the tricky bit...
At the target club, I enjoy shooting the .38/.357 Long Pistols. Which I want to put on to my FAC - as well as the .22RF.
But the target club is quite a way away, and as much as I enjoy going there, with the cost of petrol these days etc, it's getting a bit dear. The farmer mentioned I could put some targets up in one of his barns (huge thick stone built barns, and said I could put a few bales of hey at one end to catch the bullets).
I've shot for years shotgun-wise, and have been on military-shoots with the rifle club, so ain't daft. And I know for a second that a .357Mag will not penetrate any further than a bale of hey - let alone a two-foot thick stone wall!
And it's miles away from anywhere, so noise won't be an issue.
But I don't want to meither the farmer anymore by having to book time into his busy schedule to have the FLO inspecting things further. I don't like putting nice people out after they've done many a nice deed as it is, if you know what I mean.
My question is...
In the circumstances, would I be ok to apply for an FAC for a .22RF and a .38/357 Long Pistol on the grounds of Target Shooting for both (and pest control for the .22) at this farm?
Or, if I applied for an FAC to shoot a .22RF at this farm, and a .38/357 Long Pistol at the rifle club, could I only use the Long Pistol at the Club? If so, how long until I could apply for an "open ticket" so I could shoot it in the afore-mentioned thick-stoned barn??
I'm not asking for full-bore rifles, I just want to make sure I put the right stuff on my FAC App Form for some enjoyable target shooting, and would sooner I could enjoy the afore-mentioned target shooting 5mins down the road at my farmer-mate's place instead of 40-mins down the motorway, but if needs must...
i would apply for the .22 for target and on the farm
and the long pistol for target only
then when the FAO comes round to interview you, you can ask him if it is feasible to do what you're wanting
The short answer to your first question is no. LBR shooting will be restricted to target shooting with an approved/registered club with adequate insurance in place.
Originally Posted by damon80
The condition applied to your .357 LBR will be for target shooting "on ranges suitable for that class of firearm and with adequate financial arrangements in place to meet any injury or damage claim". This is equivalent to the older version which would have been "home office approved ranges" and suchlike (dependent on your local constabulary etc. etc.). Although LBR are technically just another section 1 firearm, you'll find that in practice they are conditioned differently. While I have heard of folks getting a .357 rifle on ticket for pest control, I've only ever seen LBR on there for humane despatch (which is not what you're asking for, and would only be granted for large game) and these tend to be restricted to 2 shot.
You'll probably also find that the .357 would be conditioned on the basis of membership of a target club, so the slot would only be valid while a member of that club and subject to the legal and (club) constitutional minimum attendance.
In short, you will only be permitted to shoot the .357 at a club/approved private range. In practice, you won't get an open ticket for LBR: they are heavily conditioned by most police forces: you're quite lucky that you are able to shoot them at your local range at all, because they can't be held on a club certificate and a number of constabularies restrict (by conditioning) the use of them to the certificate holder only.
You shouldn't have any trouble getting the .22rf for pest control on the farmland. The condition will state "for zeroing on land" which is NOT the same as being able to target shoot on that land. Failure to comply with the conditions may lead to revocation, so bear this in mind.
Speak to your FEO, by all means, since (s)he may be able to give you advice on setting up a private range, but I think you'll find you'll only be able to shoot your LBR at the club.
Or you could commit to all manner of club shooting and see if you can outdo our local record: 5 firearms + 2 mods on a first time application... ;-)
Originally Posted by BULLSEYE
Cheers for all the advice folks, it's appreciated! What a helpful lot you are
From what I've understood, basically - the range in a barn idea is a no-go. Ahh well, was just a thought And can totally understand the restrictions on the .357 LBP.
So can you not use a .22RF on private land (that's been signed off) for target shooting, aside for zero-ing?
And following on from the points that Bullseye and Asher raise - is it not recommended to apply for more than a couple of firearms on your first cert? I again can understand it's not, but I've received conflicting advice from some of my FAC-possessing friends - some have said put a couple down, some have said put everything down you intend to own in the 5yrs, including a Mod or two!
I was thinking of a:
.22RF Bolt-Action (target, and pest control)
.22RF Semi Auto (target, and pest control)
A mod for the .22, to keep the noise down on the range, and in the field,
.357/38 LBP Revolver (target)
.303 bolt, or 7.62 bolt (for the military ranges).
I do have the safe-space to hold them all, and have shot each and every of those types/calibers of firearms in my time at the club, but if it's not wise to apply for that many, I'd welcome your expert advice on what is more reasonable to apply for in the first application?
Cheers again folks
Its a question of interpretation to an extent, since you zero on a target. The "spirit" of the law is that you own the rifle for vermin control and therefore its primary purpose shoud be for vermin control. In real terms, pest control is likely to require less ammunition throughput than target shooting (generally speaking), so you might get asked a few awkward questions if you have a rimmie on ticket for vermin only but end up recording 5,ooo rounds of eley match on your FAC.
Originally Posted by damon80
Yeah, you'll get conflicting advice: personal taste, experience with different police forces etc. etc. all come into play. Detaching myself from all that, I would suggest you consider the following:
Originally Posted by damon80
You need to demonstrate "good reason" for each and every firearm you apply for. Good reason in the UK is based, more or less on two criteria (ignoring collectors): you shoot a class of firearm with a club and are legitimately and demonstrably able to use that class of firearm on a regular basis, or you have permission/access to shoot vermin etc. on land.
On that basis, legally, if you are considered a suitable person for grant of an FAC, you should be able to aquire whatever firearms you can demonstrate good reason to own, provided you conform with the club membership requirements and/or have permissions to shoot vermin over.
What actually happens in practice is that your local constabulary will try to impose arbitrary limits based on their local "policies". I strongly suggest you join a shooting organisation in order to be able to get advice on this, since they will have knowledge of most of the quirks between forces. For example, I have heard of some forces who set an arbitrary limit of 3 firearms on a first time application. This has no real legitimacy in terms of the actual firearms act, except that they are the licensing body. If you have good reason for more than 3 firearms, then they should be considering the individual applicaiton on its merits.
Equally of course, when some character who has just completed their probation with a club applies for 14 guns on their first FAC, the police have to look at whether the individual can legitimately use all of those firearms within the context of good reason. They're also going to watch closely come renewal time to make sure their ammo use tallies up and that they have been attending the club regularly (good reason is for usage, generally, no so the guns can just be kept).
Essentially, your application will be considered on its merits and the FEO will want to discuss each and every firearm you put on your application, your use for them, regularity etc. etc. There is nothing wrong with putting in a wish list and then negotiating it down to a reasonable compromise. Cutting yourself short just because people are afraid of "upsetting" someone whose role is essentially as a public servant is unfortunately common but also unnecessary. Most FEO's are good as gold.
The list you present is entirely reasonable, provided you intend to maintain club usage. A pair of .22lr is practically de rigeur for a club/vermin shooter. If you're planning to shoot fox, a .22 centrefire would also be wise. Plus your two range guns, each in a different discipline: I can't see any issues, but take this advice in context: I'm not an FEO.
My personal experience is this: my first FAC went in with a .22lr, .30/06 for deer, boar and target shooting, .357 u/l gallery rifle, a .22lr moderator and a pair of .44 blackpowder revolvers for cowboy action shooting. The only thing that changed was to swap out the .3006 for a .243 on the advice of my FEO as it was the preferred entry level deer calibre for my region (they imposed a mentoring/DSC1 condition, on there too). Shortly after I put in for a variation to swap one of the .44 bp slots for a second .22lr: again no problem. Most of my club shooting buddies have had a similar experience: as long as you have good reason, you'll generally get the slot. It is highly unlikely you will be refused a moderator.
Even if your local force is a bit restrictive, its worth putting a long list in that you whittle down, rather than hedge your bets and still have to reduce the application! The 5 year plan is a good one: if you don't use a slot you can always have it closed out at renewal.
In terms of ammo quantities, be realistic about throughput.
Asher, I thank-you wholeheartedly for your superb, clear response, and the advice therein