These are the recollections of Bernard, who in February 2016 has been a member of the Club for over 60 years.The earliest club document known to exist dates from 1913, when it was known as the Okehampton Small Bore Rifle Club, but the club is older than this, the records haveing been destroyed or lost. The club operated in The Drill Hall, which belonged to the Territorial Army. This was sold in the mid 1960’s and is now the Conservative Club. The Small Bore Club then moved to a premises at the rear of the White Hart Hotel which were previously used a a Tap room or Bar. During this period .22 rimfire pistol shooting was introduced, gradually the word “Rifle” was dropped from the name. In 1976 the club was evicted, the building demolished and it is now car parking space. The club borrowed approximately £6000 from various sources some being the Sports Council, West Devon Borough Council, Devon Playing Fields Association and the NSRA to buy the present site from South Western Electricity Board (SWEB) and build with the help of the Job Creation Scheme the two upstairs ranges, the club room, kitchen and toilets. The armory door was obtained from Lloyds Bank for free! In the early 1990’s, with the loans repaid, the 10m air range was added, using some recycled materials, so we have what can be seen today. Click on the pictures to see them in detail
The 10m Range
Firing points 11 to 18
The 10m Range is only used for air pistol and air rifle disciplines and is always available to members during normal club opening hours.
All 8 lanes are equipped with electrical target carriers, so it is very safe.
The Upstairs Ranges
The 1-5 Firing Point Range
This, along with the 5-10 range is up a short flight of stairs.
This Range is usually set up as a 20yd range for air pistol and LSR (Light Sport Rifle) which is shot using ordinary .22 rim-fire rifles or ordinary air rifles. Ordinary in this context means not a specialized target rifle, just a standard sporting gun you may already own or can be bought in most gun shops.
The range can also be configured as 25yd or a 25m range for other disciplines.
The 5-10 Firing Point Range
This is usually used on club nights for .22 rimfire cartridge rifle shooting in the prone (lying down) position at 25yds. This is the clubs most popular discipline.
There are 5 points and a bench rest position, due to demand shooting is done in shifts called details. You put your initials on a board in spare lane up to a maximum of three details, then get ready and wait to be called.
The Range is equipped with turning targets and these are used in competitions such as sport rifle and sport pistol at 25m.
Access to the Club is from the “Mill Road” car park in, you guessed it, Mill Road, Okehampton. Parking is FREE after 6.00pm. There is a walkway and a bridge across a river near the entrance to the car park. For security reasons it is not signposted.
The club ranges are inspected regularly and are Home Office approved.
All club firearms are stored in a secure armory which resembles a bank vault, members may keep their guns there for convenience.
All the club facilities are indoors and centrally heated, the club room, kitchen and 10m range are on the same level for ease of access.
The kitchen is available so hot drinks can be made for minimal cost, there are plenty of armchairs!
Cold drinks and chocolate bars are also for sale.
The club has a collection of pistols and rifles which are available for members use and some may be available for visitors to try.
The desk sells ammunition at very reasonable prices. Practice targets are available and the cost is included in the Range Fee.
Compressed air is available for minimal cost for precharged air guns, you need to bring the correct adapter for you gun’s cylinder.
There is a wealth of experience and encouragement to be had from club members, but it takes a little time to get to know people.
They may be waiting to shoot and will rush off when the detail is called, don’t mind this, you will be doing the same thing soon!
There are club coaches available, but you have to ask!
Okehampton Smallbore Club, after over 100 years of history has three modern well maintained purpose built ranges and caters in all respects for the requirements of its members and is dedicated to the sport of Target Shooting.
You are welcome to come and see what we have and what you can get out of the sport of Target Shooting, but please contact us first.