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Shooting FAQ's

Do I need to get written permission for shooting activities?
Yes, POR 9.37 states that written consent must be obtained for all shooting activities.

Do I still need to get written consent to take firearms on to private/ Scout owned property?

It is not a requirement but it is usually wise as you may need to prove it later. You are required by law to have consent; this can be oral or written (written includes email or text message).

How do I know if I have consent to take firearms on to private/ Scout owned property?

You need to communicate with the owner (or their designate) of the place where you intend to take the firearm. If you are unsure if you have permission or not, clarify with the owner or operator.

Why is there specific guidance on crossbows now? Was it banned before?

The use of crossbows has always been permitted, however members have asked for specific guidance on using them and so they have been brought within the rule for other types of shooting.

Do I need an archery qualification to run crossbow sessions?

No, crossbows are defined as a shooting activity as determined by the NSRA who are the national governing body for Match & Sport Crossbow.

How is the list of acceptable qualifications decided?

We regularly review the content of qualifications offered by a range of UK shooting organisations. The list provided is meant to enable as many young people as possible to experience the sport whilst maintaining a consistent level of safety across the country.

Can I now shoot at human and animal shaped targets?

No, the ban on shooting at human and animal shaped targets still remains. You cannot do this as part of a Scout event or on Scout property.

What about zombie motifs? Can I use targets which shoot red liquid out when they are shot?

Any target that looks like a human or an animal, skeletal or otherwise, cannot be shot at as part of a Scout activity or on Scout owned property. Scouts advises extreme sensitivity when using targets with liquid inside, especially taking into consideration the risk of a young person fainting or becoming distressed at the sight of ‘blood’ whilst still holding a firearm.

How can I become qualified to run shooting sessions for Scouts?

Most people choose to undertake the NSRA YPS Tutor course which is a 2 day course. Contact your ACC activities to see if there are any courses in your local area or contact the NSRA and they will put you in touch with members local to you who can help.

Can I do airsoft as a Scouting activity?

Airsoft is allowed as a Scouting activity. Airsoft guns are outside the scope of the shooting activity rules . Airsoft should be arranged following POR rule 9.77 (for Scout-led) or POR rule 9.9 (for externally-led) and take into consideration the age, maturity and abilities of your young people.

Why cannot .22 calibre air rifle and air pistols be used indoors, just like .177?

.22 air pellets are larger and heavier than their .177 counterparts and .22 air rifles and pistols are usually made as powerful as the law permits, whilst the corresponding .177 equipment is designed for target shooting and is generally less powerful. Use of .22 equipment at short range is much more likely to cause pellets to rebound dangerously from inappropriate surfaces, especially wood, and may damage targetry intended for use with .177 calibre.


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Charity Numbers 306101 (England and Wales) and SC038437 (Scotland).
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