New to Rifle & Pistol Shooting

Unfortunately the Rifle and Pistol section are not currently able to offer membership to new shooters without a full Firearms License. Current Firearms Certificate holders, are still being accepted and welcome to apply as usual.

A few words about rifle & pistol shooting

Shooting is an exciting and absorbing activity and a visit to Bolton Gun Club: Rifle & Pistol section gives you the opportunity to enter into this world. As a club, part of our role is to introduce people to the sport and give them the opportunity to try this very challenging and rewarding sport. Whether you are a 'first timer' or you have already had a certain amount of experience, our coaches can help you on your way.

Great Britain has an excellent track record of international shooting success, whether at an Olympic, Commonwealth or European level. But the best thing about shooting is that it is inclusive sport and a great leveller! Across the country, individuals from all walks of life enjoy a safe and exciting hobby that can be extremely rewarding.

Shooting is also one of the few sports that offer a genuine opportunity for sportsmen and women to compete on an equal footing.

Would you like to give it a try?

Anyone wishing to join Bolton Gun Club: Rifle & Pistol section should first contact the club’s secretary, details of which can be found on the contact’s page of this web site. If you already have a firearms certificate joining is quite simple. If you do not there are various criteria that must be met before you can be granted full membership and apply for a firearms certificate from your local Police Authority.

The steps involved in joining the club are simple, firstly you become a probationary member of Bolton Gun Club: Rifle & Pistol section and attend 3 instructional training days and a minimum of 3 monthly visits for Shotgun Certificate holders, or 6 visits for non-certificate holders. During these visits you will receive instruction on the safe handling of firearms, different types of rifles you may encounter, range rules and etiquette. Listen carefully and follow the instructions. Your safety is our main priority. Shooting is a very safe sport precisely because shooters pay great attention to safe gun handling at all times: a few basic safety rules ensures the safety of all participants. Whenever you are shooting, there is always a very small risk, while repeated exposure to the sound of gunshots is quite capable of damaging your hearing. Please wear the offered protection to reduce these risks at all times when on the range.

On being accepted as a probationary member you will receive a training record card this is completed as you attend the training visits and signed off by a qualified Range Officer or Coach once the card is completed. After completing the probationary period and demonstrating that you are safe you are upgraded to a full member, you can then apply to your local Police Authority for a Firearms Certificate.


Common questions

Do I need to pay extra for equipment and ammo?

The use of our equipment and the actual tuition is given freely and most of our members started in exactly the same position you are in and both time and equipment was provided for them. As such our members are only too happy to carry on this tradition. However, it is expected that you pay for the ammunition you use and ammounition will be charged at cost.

Will it hurt?

That is a question which many newcomers to shooting, especially with cartridge weapons such as shotguns, will often ask. Whenever a gun is fired there is recoil which is transmitted to the shoulder through the stock of the gun. However, with the gun and cartridge combinations used in training, the recoil is easily controlled. Your coach will make sure that the stock of the gun is tucked tightly into your shoulder. That way, you are unlikely to notice the recoil when you fire a shot.

Do I need to hold a Firearms or Shotgun Certificate?

Experienced shooters will normally hold a shotgun or firearm certificate from the police, but the law allows those who do not hold a certificate to use a shotgun at an approved shooting ground, and under appropriate supervision.

I Loved it, what next?

We hope very much that you will enjoy your visit. If you want to shoot again, speak to your coach or to one of the members of the club and they will be delighted to help you. We can provide a course of tuition for new shooters. And if you are serious about taking up the sport, then why not think about applying to the police for your own certificate?