Plans for clay pigeon shooting school near Amesbury and Boscombe Down site

PLANS for a clay pigeon shooting school near the Boscombe Down base have been submitted.

The scheme would see a school established at Beacon Hill Farm, near Amesbury, and has been submitted by Kernon Countryside Consultants on behalf of the farm owners.

A previous application for a shooting school on the site was refused in April 2022 on the grounds of the risk to MoD operations at Boscombe Down; the proximity of the shoot to residential properties; and the lack of an ecological impact assessment.

The new application retains the shooting school in woodland on the site, but introduces noise bunds to limit the impact on nearby properties, as well as changing the alignment of the “shooting position”.

It also states the MoD has withdrawn its objection to the previous plan.

“The proposed shooting school will be mostly contained within the woodland area, with a small number of positions shooting form the woodland out over the arable land to the north and north west,” the application said.

“The layout of the shooting position has been amended since the last application, and earth bunds have been constructed to contain noise in a number of locations.”

The shooting school would be in woodland (boxed in red). Picture: Google

The shooting school would be in woodland (boxed in red). Picture: Google

Car parking would be provided at a yard south of farm buildings, while a Portakabin would be installed on the site for visitors to “sign in and undergo a safety briefing”, the plans said.

“The site office will be portable, hence the application seeks a change of use of land to the stationing of a site office,” the application went on.

“The operators may install a larger unit in the future.”

It would act as an office and reception area, the plans said, as well as an area for talks, indoor activities and small prize givings.

“Near to the site office, and in a small clearing, ladies and gents portable toilet blocks will be provided,” the application added.

Movable traps, which fire the clay pigeon targets, would be installed on the site, including a “tall trap stand”, containing “remote-controlled traps at multiple different heights”.

READ MORE: Plans for new Parsonage Down Nature Reserve base revealed
READ MORE: Stonehenge scheme would see new block and neolithic building created

The shooting school would be expected to operate six days a week, between 9am and dusk or 6pm, except Sundays.

“Most days, only one or two people will be under tuition at any one time, so traffic and footfall will be limited,” the plans said.

“Most days a maximum of 20 cars per day is expected.

“On Saturday, it is hoped that numbers will be about three times the weekly number. Obviously, this will be staggered over the day.”

Meanwhile, competitions could be staged at the site 24 times each year, the application said.

“These would, it is hoped, attract 100-120 guns (people) and would normally be run for charity,” it went on. “Hence, there would be 90-120 cars over the length of the day for visiting guns.

“In addition, there would be 10 cars for staff, plus a catering van.

“The shoot competition would operate within normal operating hours.”

For more details, and to comment on the scheme, log on to and search for application reference PL/2023/11131.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *