Unless you are a landowner, or have the permission from a landowner to shoot vermin or larger game with a Section 1 firearm, you will need to join a Home Office approved rifle
and/or muzzle-loading pistol club.
This is necessary for you to establish good reason for the possession of such a gun.
Shooting clubs, like all other sports clubs, provide social and legal benefits connected to your sport or chosen discipline, but their main advantage is
in the training and knowledge which you will gain during your probationary period. Through this training you will learn to handle guns confidently and be aware of the safety aspects surrounding the sport.
There are clubs of all types which cater for target shooters, muzzle-loaders, practical shotgun users, military collectors and re-enactment groups for every imaginable historical period. Not all of these activities require possession of a firearm certificate, but you will find that the legal complexities make it more favourable to do so. Membership of an approved club will open up all these possibilities to the novice shooter. You will meet many characters in the sport, including experts on not only the technical and historic aspects of firearms, but also uniforms and other associated militaria.
If you merely wish to shoot firearms without the added responsibility of guns being stored at your own premises, you can do so by joining a club which possesses a Club Firearms Certificate.
This allows members to use club guns, held on that certificate, without the requirement for them to have a certificate in their own right. However, most people join a club with the intention of obtaining their own personal firearm, held on their own firearm certificate. You will be able to do this on completion of your probationary period as laid down by the club rules.
To have shown an interest in this sport you have probably already come into contact with shooters, and this is important. Shooting at the beginner's level is not a sport for the solitary individual. Whether this contact was personal or through sport publications or even the internet, we strongly advise that you join one of the recognised and reputable shooting organisations.
Please be aware that all approved clubs maintain liaison with the police, and will notify the police if any member has not shot or attended the club within the last twelve months.