Porthcawl Air Rifle Team holds youth proficiency course

Monday, 11 February 2019

– Local People

by Contributed ItemContributed Item

LAST year Porthcawl Air Rifle Team (PART) held a Youth Proficiency Scheme (YPS) course with material provided by the National Small Bore Rifle Association (NSRA).

PART and supporters provided all the equipment required for the course.

It is a structured course where the students learn about the statutory laws governing guns in this country and how to use them respectfully, and the different types of sport that use them.

This was then subsequently padded out with extra material and videos by Mr Kevin Cambourne and his team.

It was held in Kenfig Hill Labour Club (the home of PART) and conducted by the four NSRA air gun coaches and senior members of PART every Sunday evening for two hours, over 10 weeks.

We were pleasantly surprised at the outcome of the course as it was our first one, but all students passed well in both written and practical tests.

Our secretary, and one of coaches, Caroline King, started contacting people to be at the awards presentation to give the students their certificates and badges of proficiency.

The task of setting up the presentation was given to Miss Jasmine King and her team.

Several local and Welsh Air Gun Association people who had provided help were invited to the ceremony, as was Brian Nye and his wife Carol who, as ex-PART members, were very supportive in this endeavour, and Mr Nye also took the evening’s photos.

The captain of the Porthcawl air rifle team, Huw Walford, opened the proceedings and gave thanks to the coaches and the parents of the students for their support and the students for their complete attention and attendance at the course, all the invited people who supported the course and Mr Nye.

He then introduced David Phelps (who has not only won gold twice in his sport but is also a Commonwealth record holder too), who also commended the PART coaches on the work done.

He then gave a talk on his life in his sport, starting out at the age of seven at seven yards (6.4m) with pistols and small bore guns. He then took a sidestep into archery for four years before returning to rifles.

He has represented Wales over the years at 10m prone (lying down) and at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, with a gold medal on his birthday.

He took questions from the audience, about equipment, favourite make of rifle and what specialist clothing he wore, practice.

Then came the awards ceremony as Miss J King and Mr Phelps called out the students: Master A Davies, Expert Shot; Miss AM Davies, Expert Shot; Master B Burke, Expert Shot; Miss M Burke, Expert Shot; Miss N Caudle, Marksman; Master T Caudle, Marksman; and Master T Collier, Marksman.

To close, Mr Walford presented a PART team cap to Mr Phelps and thanked him; he also presented to the Kenfig Hill Labour Club a photo of last year’s winning PART team as a thank you for all the club’s support, which was presented to the secretary David Jones.

A small buffet was laid on and the chatting and one-upmanship went on for hours!

The next course is full, but visit our Facebook page for more information.

Damian Ellis, NSRA Coach and PART member

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