Orig­i­nal reader

Sporting Gun - - LETTER OF THE MONTH -

When Sport­ing Gun started hit­ting the shelves in 1977 it was like a breath of fresh air for clay and game shoot­ers alike. All we had be­fore was Shoot­ing Times, so I started buy­ing it from day one.

Here are the some im­ages you re­quested from my mes­sage to Sport­ing Gun’s Face­book page. This most re­cent pho­to­graph of me was taken at Lak­en­heath in 2011 while shoot­ing for Bed­ford­shire at the East Mid­lands In­ter-coun­ties

Skeet Cham­pi­onship.

I hope you can use them. I have taken the lib­erty of in­clud­ing a bit about me if you think you can use it.

I started shoot­ing in 1974 at Fl­itwick Gun Club and joined Bed­ford Gun Club in 1975. Af­ter buy­ing a Brown­ing B1, which cost

£516 new, I started shoot­ing Skeet when it was then eight sta­tions. I scored a 99 on my third 100 bird shoot.

I shot ISU skeet on squad with Joe Neville who used a Rot­tweil Olympia 72 Skeet gun with retro chokes. Hav­ing watched Joe pow­der most of the tar­gets, I got very en­vi­ous and swapped my B1 for a Rot­tweil. I still use it to­day although it has started to let me down with the odd mis­fire, still it is 40 years old.

How­ever, I had a bit of suc­cess with it and went on to win quite a few com­pe­ti­tions. I also found my­self in the Sport­ing Gun Top 20 English Skeet Club in 1981 and I have the badge to prove it!

When Bed­ford Gun Club closed in 1987 I car­ried on shoot­ing, trav­el­ling all over the coun­try but busi­ness com­mit­ments took over and I gave up shoot­ing in 1989.

Then out of the blue in 2011 I re­ceived a phone call from Bert Ma­son who was Bed­ford­shire Skeet Team Man­ager ask­ing if I fan­cied join­ing the team. I was hon­oured to be asked but sug­gested to him that I was very rusty. To cut a long story short I won the Veter­ans class in the Beds County Skeet Cham­pi­onship and won the Bed­ford­shire County Cham­pi­onship in 2014. I didn’t seem have much suc­cess shoot­ing for the team though, sorry Bert!

Now, at 71, I’m think­ing of buy­ing a new gun and giv­ing it another go.

Geoff Bick­ers, via Face­book

Ed – It’s great to hear from you Geoff and I’m glad you took the time to get in touch through Face­book. I’m glad you are still read­ing the magazine. Thank you also for send­ing the pic­tures. For that ex­tra ef­fort you have won the ex­cel­lent Musto Fen­land jacket.

Veteran Geoff Bck­ers shoot­ing for Bed­ford­shire at Lak­en­heath in 2011

Suc­cess Geoff fea­tured in Sport­ing Gun in the 1970s

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