Shooting is available to all cadets. Shooting is strictly controlled by qualified staff to ensure maximum safety. However before cadets are permitted to practice any shooting they are given instruction on the rifle at the conclusion of which they must pass a Weapons Handling Test (WHT) to demonstrate they are safe and competent in handling a weapon. The Mark 8 .22 rifle is based on the Enfield No.4 rifle used in World War II adapted for cadet use by having a shorter barrel to make it lighter in weight. It has no magazine thus each bullet has to be hand fed into the breach before the bolt is closed. It is quiet compared to full bore weapons and has a light kickback giving the cadets a taste of firing live rounds on a range. The Mark 8 rifle is used on indoor and outdoor ranges.
Once a cadet who is 14 years or older has attained a 'First Class Shot' on the Mark 8 rifle they are able to undertake dry training on the L98 rifle. On completing their dry training cadets must also pass the Weapon Handling Test. Similar to the Enfield L85A rifle as issued to the British Armed Forces it has a magazine from which each round is fed into the breach. The rifle is adapted for use by cadets by virtue of having no automatic rapid fire. The L98 uses 5.56mm high velocity ammunition producing a greater kickback than the .22 ammunition. Being more powerful it is only used on outdoor ranges.
TYPES OF SHOOTING
There are various practices conducted using the rifle including grouping, snap and rapid. Initially the cadet will need to complete dry training before completing a weapons handling test (WHT) only on successful completion of a weapons handling test will they be permitted to fire live rounds.
Grouping - You select a single point on the target and fire a number of rounds at it. The aim is for all rounds to form the smallest group possible. This is excellent for concentrating and perfecting your technique. There's no limit to how long you can take when firing.
Deliberate Fire - Firing at a target with marked scoring rings, your score is marked depending on how near to the centre of the target you manage to get. For this you use either a large, single target or a card with 5 or 10 separate targets marked on it. When firing at a card with multiple targets, you aim to place one or two rounds on each of them. Take as long as you need - the goal is accuracy.
Rapid Fire - Just like it sounds, speed is the thing here. Get the round within the target area, but within a time limit. For instance, you may need to fire 10 rounds in 40 seconds with a No.8 rifle – not too easy when you have to reload manually after each shot.
Snap Fire - Now it gets more challenging. For this you have to get all rounds to fall within a target area. But, the targets only appear for a short time before vanishing again. You must hit it before it disappears. By the end of the practice the target may have appeared - for perhaps 5 seconds - and disappeared up to 5 times. Just to make it even more difficult, it'll sometimes appear at random time intervals - so you can't anticipate it!
Bisley is the 'home' of British Target
Shooting. Only cadets who are exceptional shots qualify to shoot in the
Inter-Service Cadet Rifle Meeting (ISCRM) at Bisley.
During the competition there are events for teams and individuals with the
highlight being the tri-services shoot where Air Cadets complete against
cadets from the Combined Cadet Force, the Army Cadet Force, and Sea Cadet