Charity Clay Pigeon Shoot at Bisley Shooting Ground

16 June 2008

Having been moved to complete the Etape du Tour in 2007 as a result of visiting Grenadiers in Selly Oak Hospital and Hedley Court, Anthony Roupell was just as keen to fundraise in 2008 for The Colonel's Fund. As the proprietor of Bisley Shooting Ground, he and his team set about planning a charity shooting day for the Fund.

In all, 150 people came on a beautifully sunny day to shoot in teams of 5, including many serving Grenadiers some of those Anthony had visited during their convalescence. The day opened with bacon sandwiches and a cup of tea whilst Anthony welcomed all and the safety brief was given. This was shortly followed by the guns making their way to what is the largest and finest clay range in Europe.

Each gun had a 100 cartridge practice amongst each of the testing shoots, followed by a 24 bird competition, finishing up with a 25 cartridge team flush. The teams enjoyed the run of the ground and under the superb tutelage of the Bisley staff very few clays escaped unharmed.

Once the final cartridge had been spent, the teams retired to the colonial clubhouse for drinks before sitting down for lunch. Over the delicious three courses, there was great debate between the teams as to who would be crowned ‘top gun’ and much remonstration over “the one that got away”.

Once coffee was served, it was time for Adger Brown, comedian and compere extraordinaire, to conduct what was a highly amusing and profitable auction during which some acts of extreme generosity were witnessed. Few escaped the razor wit of Adger who at one memorable point demoted Major Grant Baker from his position as Regimental Adjutant to that of ‘Regimental Irritant’!

All that was left was to award prizes for those who had excelled themselves with their shooting. Andrew Prendergast was narrowly beaten to the title of ‘top gun’ by Alan Dalton who achieved a score of 45/48. Carole Sawkins, with 42/48, was names top female shoot, beating Anne Williams and Emma Balaam to 2nd and 3rd respectively. The teams of Edward Dent and Bill Phelps were runners up in the top team field to that of Andrew Prendergast, who was accompanied by Gilly Prendergast, David Tredinnick, Benjy Wills and Andrew Parker-Bowles. The final and most eagerly anticipated was the consolation prize. The Officers of the 1st Battalion had conveniently misplaced their score cards so it was unclear how they had done, however it was the team of Jim Wilson, Tim Breitmeyer, David Sewell, Peter Furness-Smith and Grant Baker who were awarded the wooden spoon. Much was made of how the clays didn’t fly like real birds, but the famous army phrase ‘all the gear, no idea’ was never more appropriate!

A fantastic time was had by all and importantly a very large amount was raised for the Fund. The Committee would like to thank Anthony Roupell and all the staff at BSG for their generosity and help and also all those who attended and made the day the success it was. Wait out for details of a similar event in 2009!