June 29th to July 5th saw the 100th Scottish meeting in Lauder (Scottish Boarders) and 7 intrepid Cheshire & North Wales Association Members made the 4 hour plus journey there to compete, so they could say "We were there at the 100th Scottish meeting". Our band of 7 were: Gavin Scott-Brooker, Mike Arnstein, Mark Parry, Mike Lappin, Brendan Newport, Carl Taylor and Neil Almond.

The range at Lauder is extremely well appointed, with a very good firing-point, that is both flat and even, and has an astro-turf topping, so makes getting into position very simple. The roof of the firing-point is correlated tin, with scaffold poles holing it all in place; it is set in the grounds of Thirlestane Castle which was clearly visible just to the left of the range.


"Mark Parry looking cool at the range before the start of shooting!"

Sadly the conditions did not match the aspect of the range layout, as there was a howling gale from left to right all week. The challenge was to stay out of the 6 ring (at 100 Yards); and that wasn't as easy as it sounds (even for X Class).

Please note the Wind-flags!

For those who don't know the course of fire at The Scottish Meeting is 100 shots at 100 Yards, and 100 Shots at 50 Meters; shot over two days (Monday & Wednesday for C & D Class; and Tuesday & Thursday for X & A) There was also the Weekend aggregate consisting of 60 at 100 Yards and 60 at 50 Meters) for those of us brave enough to give that a go too. Along side that there were various Team & Individual competitions that could be shot concurrently with the aggregate (or separately if preferred). 

So of the three of us brave enough to enter the weekend aggregate Gavin & Brendan shot in C class, and I was in X; Gavin had a brilliant shoot finishing up in second place for the weekend (a bit of a sore point for him, as there was only a prize for the winner). Brendan was a few places behind Gavin, but walked away with his head held high for a job well done over the two days. For my part I managed to come in the top half of X (just). So far so good you may think!

On to the week aggregate, where Gavin continued his excellent shooting, finishing in a very credible 5th place overall, and only just missing out on promotion to B Class! and he walked away from Scotland, with 4 Silver Medals, A Gold Marksman Plaque and a Mastershot Scotland Award. 

However, hats off to Mike Arnstein and Carl Taylor, who finished 4th & 5th respectively in A Class, both winning promotion to X - Many congratulations to them both for  an excellent overall performance. For Mike Lappin in D Class he finished exactly half way up the leader board, and again should be congratulated for a steady shoot in some pretty vile conditions.

Meanwhile in X Class Mark Parry finished a full 19 points (and 20 places) ahead of Neil in the aggregate - so he has 'bragging rites' (for now anyway!!) Mark also managed to bag 2 Bronze medals in the Any-Sights competition, finishing 3rd in both the 50 Meters and in the overall Any-sights aggregate competition.

Onto the Team Competitions - especially the County Sextette where we finished 7th overall with a team score of 2249 a mere 60 points behind Aberdeenshire who were overall winners (I wonder if local Scottish knowledge helped them at all )

Appleton entered a team in three of the Club Team competitions, finishing in 4th, 6th & 12th place respectively, so nothing to get too excited about, but no disgrace either; and at least we were represented, and got a team entered.

Mark & Neil also shot in the Club pairs, finishing 7th overall - so again OK, but nothing to write home about; however in the Sharpshooter (6 x 2" clay disks at 100 yards to be broken in 60 seconds) they were eliminated in the first round, being beaten by last years champions (so actually no disgrace there to be fair), however I would like to formally apologise to my partner for letting him down and failing to break a single disk (while he smashed 4)!!

Overall it was great to see Cheshire & North Wales represented at this prestigious event, and it was brilliant to have some of our members doing so well across the various competitions.

Hopefully as a county we will continue to support both the Scottish and Bisley meetings (Bisley is 10th to 17th August, and is a grand aggregate of 2800)


Neil Almond - Cheshire & North Wales Rifle Captain.