Select Committee on Home Affairs Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence


Memorandum by the United Kingdom Practical Shooting Association


  The UKPSA was founded in 1977 to promote and control International Practical Shooting Confederation (IPSC) style shooting in this country. Over the years we have worked hard with various authorities and police forces and have established that we are a responsible Association. We are a member of the British Shooting Sports Council (BSSC).

  We should make it clear that the UKPSA is the governing body for all IPSC disciplines in the UK. We cannot speak on behalf of any other association or body which may purport to represent or administer other forms of "practical shooting" in the UK.

  Since the recent legislation following the tragedy at Dunblane our Association has been faced with the loss of our main discipline of pistol shooting. We have worked hard to develop the existing disciplines of Practical Shotgun and Practical Rifle along with developing new disciplines such as Mini-Rifle, using .22 semi-automatic rifles, CO2 pistol and, at present, looking at a carbine based discipline.

  The various training programmes and syllabuses which we have in place demonstrate that safety is our primary concern. Copies of our existing training programmes have been circulated to the Home Office and we are in the process of revising our competitor training programmes for the remaining disciplines with a view to improving participant understanding and to update them in line with the modern development of the sport.

  UKPSA controlled Practical Shooting is shot in this country by approximately 500 individual members and by some 3,000 affiliated club members. It is part of a world-wide sporting discipline shot in some 70 IPSC regions. We are unaware of any firearms related accidents or injuries in the UK resulting from this discipline. Our safety record is second to none.

  We have produced and circulated to various police forces and the Home Office a number of documents and booklets which demonstrate our attention to safety and the infra-structure that the UKPSA has built up. These are as follows:

  UKPSA/IPSC Practical Shotgun. This document had been requested by various police forces so that they could better understand the sport.

  UKPSA/IPSC Practical Shotgun Competitions. This document has been widely circulated and shows the requirements and criteria for holding competitions.

  UKPSA Rule Book—Pistol—Shotgun—Rifle. These detail the rules by which the sport is shot internationally.

  UKPSA Range Safety Officer Criteria. This document shows the requirements for our range safety officers.

  UKPSA Training Manual for Range Officer—Chief Range Officer—Rangemaster. This document details the syllabus for our Range Officer Training.

  At the moment, because of restrictive conditions being placed on firearms certificates by some police forces, they are forcing certificate holders to join the UKPSA. Whilst the Association always welcomes new members we feel that it is better to attract voluntary members rather than forcing people to join our Association for whatever reason. Our existing members are committed to an Association that promotes an extensive competition calendar and to the ethos of UKPSA/IPSC Practical Shooting. We have made suggestions of alternative wording and conditions to the Firearms Consultative Committee in a submission dated 15 April 1999.

  We question the rationale behind the reclassification of large capacity magazine shotguns with barrels over 24" from Section 2 to Section 1 of the Firearms Act as amended in 1988 given that large magazine shotguns are ballistically identical and use, with the exception of slug, the same ammunition as Section 2 shotguns. It seems that this upgrade in status was not justified. We are unaware of any statistical evidence that suggests there has been an improvement in public safety. We ask that your Committee look at this point and give consideration to advising that this classification ought to be reversed.

  Should you require any further expansion on any of the above points, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Graham Gill


United Kingdom Practical Shooting Association.

13 October 1999

previous page contents next page

House of Commons home page Parliament home page House of Lords home page search page enquiries index

© Parliamentary copyright 2000
Prepared 13 April 2000