Air Cadets have the opportunity to participate in the sport of rifle target shooting, on either the .22 Lee Enfield or L98A2 weapons. A "range" is a location designed so that people can take part in shooting under controlled conditions and ranges come in many shapes and sizes. Initially, shooting takes place with the target 25m from the firer, either on a 25m indoor range or a 25m barrack (outdoor) range. Cadets can aim to achieve various marksmanship qualification badges to wear on their uniform. Cadets who prove to be excellent marksmen can go on to the Inter-Service Cadet Small Bore Competition at Bisley, against Sea and Army Cadets. The top 100 marksmen of this tri-service competition gain a Cadet Hundred badge.
Safety is paramount with all ATC activities and shooting is certainly no exception. Training is an integral part of the system and each cadet is fully trained in whichever rifle they will be using before they shoot. Staff whom undertake shooting with cadets will have attended and passed a number of weekend courses with a Regional Small Arms Training Team (SATT) at either a Royal Air Force station or an Army camp, before they can do so. Each cadet also has a 6 monthly weapons handling test to prove that they can safely handle the weapon. Should they fail this test, they are given refresher training before they are allowed to shoot on a range.
At every range a risk assessment is carried out by the Range Control Officer (RCO). This is to ensure the range is safe for live fire. Cadets must follow all range instructions to the letter and all orders given whilst on or around the range. All Cadets fire from the lying down position either on your right or left side depending on right or left handed, although nearly all of the rifles in the ATC are right handed. Cadets can not fire from any other position.
Finding a comfortable position and breathing slowly will increase your accuracy. You may also use the rifle strap - this will help smaller cadets with the weight by wrapping it around the wrist.
As you can imagine safety is extremely important whilst handling firearms and inappropriate behaviour will be dealt with severely. At the end of any shoot you will be asked if you have any live or fired rounds it is an offence to carry live or spent ammunition from any range.
Cadets 'Dry Training' to ensure competence
Cadets 'live firing' on an outdoor range