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With the final clay shoot at the end of September, Tarbert Gun Club said farewell to its home at Barmore as the property was placed on the market.
Club president Brian Baird sent the Argyllshire Advertiser a message on behalf of Tarbert Gun Club to all who have supported the club over the years – and he makes it clear that this is not the end:
‘Tarbert Gun Club started in 1988, formed by Duncan McAlister.
‘We had the first meeting at Finlaggen in Tarbert; present that evening was Duncan, his wife Margaret, Donald Bruce, Callum Clark, David MacArthur, Ian Hyslop, Bobby McColl, Lyne MacArthur and myself. And so, the club was formed.
‘We shot at Brenfield and then at Barmore and we have been there ever since. At first we only had hand-operated traps for firing the clays and all of us took our turn to operate them.
‘As time went on and under instruction from Bob McColl, we did parties of people who wanted to try clay shooting and this provided us with extra income that we were able to spend on automatic traps.
‘We held regular shoots for members and also for parties and the club went from strength to strength.
‘Over the years we raised a lot of money for different charities and local groups. I’m not sure of the amount raised but will be in excess of £25,000.
‘Many years ago we started a winter league between Carradale Gun Club and Tarbert.
‘At first we had four shoots – two at Carradale and two at Tarbert.
‘Over time, it just stayed at Tarbert, the format changed and it went to five shoots with teams graded in class.
‘At the end of it we had a prize-giving in one of the hotels or restaurants in Tarbert. This was a much-anticipated event for all.
‘The last one, with Bobby McColl, was in the Islay Frigate Hotel in March 2020.
‘I have to say that our time at Barmore has been fantastic, with many people trying shooting for the first time.
‘It is a wonderful feeling when someone hits their first target; the look on their face says it all.
‘The club is now seeking new grounds and hopefully we will get somewhere soon.
‘I would like to say to everyone who has shot and helped at Tarbert Gun Club over the years that we could not have done it without you all and so the club thanks every one of you.
‘Please keep in touch and we will let you all know where and when we will resume shooting.’