Gun club under threat after loss of grounds

A clay pigeon shooting club is facing closure - for the second time within two years - after being told it must vacate its venue.

Tuesday, 6th March 2018, 3:04 pm
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 2:46 am
Members of the Countryman Gun Club SUS-180603-150046001

The 100-member Countryman Gun Club - whose members include men and women from a string of hamlets and villages from Horsham to Worthing - is now appealing to local landowners to help them find a new location.

Club members have held regular shoots at the Knepp Castle Estate, West Grinstead, since the club’s formation in 1970.

Club vice chairman James Nugent said: “Two years ago we were very saddened that our shoot on the Knepp Estate would be coming to a close. Back then we were fortunately offered a new proposal which saw the gun club shooting throughout the year with the exception of July and August.

“Unfortunately, this situation has now been changed and we have been requested to cease shooting at the end of this year.”

The gun club meets around once a fortnight from Easter through to October with a Christmas shoot in December. It hosts two open shoots each year, six skeet and 12 sporting mornings plus one have-a-go shoot. It has also set up and run clay shooting at the annual West Grinstead Ploughing Match for many years.

Members say they are now seeking a new location within reasonable distance of Shipley and surrounding villages. Anyone who can help should contact James Nugent at [email protected]

Meanwhile, the club - which has raised more than £13,000 over the last eight years for local organisations and charities - expressed its thanks to Knepp estate owner Sir Charles Burrell for his support since the stewardship of the estate passed to him from Sir Walter Burrell in 1985.