New rifle ranges taking shape as club prepares to move to allow housing
PUBLISHED: 06:00 23 July 2020
Construction work has started after 15 years of negotiations on a new state-of-the-art headquarters for one of the area’s oldest shooting clubs.
Felixstowe Rifle Club – founded 120 years ago – is being forced to move from its current site because the land is needed for new housing.
The club has been based in Walton High Street for decades, but the land is part of the 30-acre Walton North site earmarked for 385 new homes.
Contractors working for Trinity College Cambridge on the Trimley Estate have now started construction of new facilities for the club. These will include a new clubhouse and four ranges.
The new site, located just off Nicholas Road in Trimley St Mary, will provide facilities which will help to secure the future of Felixstowe Rifle Club.
The new club facilities will include:
• one 50m and one 100-yard outdoor range for small bore rifles
• indoor range for air rifles
• indoor range for full bore rifles
• a combined clubhouse and armoury
The existing air gun range, part funded by Sport England Lottery Fund, will be dismantled, and relocated on the new site. New bunds will form the western northern and eastern boundaries of the two outdoor ranges, in addition to a bund which will separate the two to help mitigate noise.
Felixstowe Rifle Club was formed around 1900 and originally used the army ranges, known locally as The Butts, at Landguard Common before being relocated to its current site after the Second World War, which was an old Home Guard range.
The club, which also hosts target shooting for the blind and has acted as an Olympic training base for overseas teams, currently has about 150 members
Tim Collins, on behalf of the Trimley Estate, said: “I’ve been working with the Felixstowe Rifle Club on these proposals for the past 15 years and so we are very please to finally start on building these great new facilities. They are a major step forward for a club that was founded 120 years ago this year.”
John Humphries, president of the Felixstowe Rifle Club, said: “This will be a fantastic facility for our members, many of whom have gone on to compete nationally, as well as creating much more accessible facilities for the various groups and organisations that use the rifle range. We look forward to welcoming our members to the new ranges when they open in spring next year.”