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Scully

Westlands Country Park

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Had a look up today and with the exception of two young lads had the entire place to ourselves. Yesterday mate had been to Lakeland Guns in Workington and bought himself a s/h Beretta AL391 Light, which he brought to try out, but our real reason for going was to practise on the high tower for a forthcoming beaters day. Along with the Beretta he had his G5 Miroku; I had my Perazzi and my Gamba, which I hadn't used for over two years as the stock was broken, but as it has now been repaired this seemed a good day to try it out. 

After signing in off we went, and at the first stand mate unsleeved his new toy, and what lovely toy it is! It has a 24" barrel, and in it he had screwed an extended/ported Benelli ( Crio? ) IC choke. It really does look the dogs danglies and with this choke would make an excellent bolting bunny gun...real ones as opposed to the clay variety. We played about on various stands and then reached the high tower, which the IC managed to break when he did his bit on the standards, but the midis were harder to get to terms with. I had put half and full in the Gamba and with it's 32" barrels it swung right through both standards and midis very smoothly, which made me smile no end. I didn't clean up but broke more than I missed on report, so more than happy. Shooting a crossing midi followed by a slower and therefore drooping standard looper from the same tower wasn't as straight forward however, and I only connected with a couple of the midis and no loopers. 

We dropped in on those stands we fancied and ignored the ones we didn't, but spent quite a few cartridges on left to right/right to left unpredictably bouncing bolting bunnies. We had great fun on this stand and I was pleasantly surprised to find those barrels swung as fast as was needed, but the real joy was using that Beretta Light with its 'drive by' stumpy barrel! What a fantastic little gun this is and a great find....great big cheesy grins all round, definitely a keeper! What an absolute joy to use! We finished off on the Skeet layout after a bit of DTL, where we ran out of cartridges, so went back to the clubhouse where Robin and her friend cooked us lunch consisting of Cheeseburger ( and a very nice burger ) and chips, a Latte each and then back to it.

This time mate had his Miroku and me the Perazzi. Had a good time on various stands we'd missed out on the first round and then tried the high tower again. Mate struggled on this stand for some reason; he is a better shot than me and high driven birds are bread and butter targets to him, but he was very inconsistent for some reason. Anyhow, although I connected with both standards and midis with the Perazzi, I grew frustrated with being unable to hit a pair, and the more I tried the worse it got; my swing felt laboured and deliberate as opposed to smooth and consistent. It wasn't until the drive home I started to believe I had gone back to lifting my head from the comb with this gun. Annoying, but not as annoying as not knowing where you're going wrong. Again I connected now and then with the crossing midi from this tower, but not the standard looper. We used the remainder of our cartridges ( best part of two boxes ) on the bolting bunny stand, where mate at one time with a well timed shot, managed to kill both with one shot as they crossed! Great fun. 😀

Back to clubhouse for another coffee. Between us we had managed to shoot 426 cartridges which cost us ( after a few deductions for empty traps etc ) £59.40 each...for clays only, we took our own cartridges. 

A grand larl day out. 🙂

We were informed that in the process of being built is a much larger clubhouse incorporating a bar, restaurant, gun dealership with in-house gunsmith, fishing tackle outlet and shop to cater for the statics, chalets and tourers. Sounds good.  👍

Edited to add that on the clubhouse notice board was a very nice looking collection ( nine I think ) of Belgian made Brownings and Mirokus for sale. 

Edited by Scully

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Great ground and my local. High tower is good and I was told they are hoping to increase the height. And yes some nice Brownings for sale by a mate of mine clearing out his collection.

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I enjoy Westlands, but it needs to be overcast weather to really enjoy the clays, especially the tower as the Sun is in a bad place in the sky. I write down on a piece of paper where there is a no bird then I don't get charged for it. Really nice group of people who run it and a good target variety of angles and speed.

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3 minutes ago, BlaserF3 said:

I enjoy Westlands, but it needs to be overcast weather to really enjoy the clays, especially the tower as the Sun is in a bad place in the sky. I write down on a piece of paper where there is a no bird then I don't get charged for it. Really nice group of people who run it and a good target variety of angles and speed.

Entirely agree. The people have always been very nice whenever we've been. Good idea re' the no birds.

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My favourite  ground , just a round trip of maybe 180 miles for me . Last time over they said about a big club house as i was sat inside having a coffee  and though wow this would make an amzing workshop 😎 the sun can be a bit of a pain at times . They have made it look amazing now . With all the cabins , and static caravans .i belive the owner has a big caravan site towards Kelso or somewere around there I need a trip over . Loved your write up Scully .

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Thankyou. Mmmm, can see how that round trip could be off putting. I’m often surprised at just how far folk will travel to shoot clays; I suppose they have the option to stay over at Westlands and make a weekend of it. The good thing about it is once you’ve signed in and have your card, you can shoot as many or as few as you want. We spent quite a long time just on the tower and rabbits, and if you’re on your own you can put targets on a timer similar to the timer on a camera. 

Must read up about Compak; fancy a go next time. 

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Compak is like shooting all the differant stand around a clay ground without moving much . And nice doubles , as you move from one stand to another . There is a differant letters to shoot at  plys the clay seems a little differant as you move . Like skeet a bit . I dont shoot it much . Think it would be more fun in a little competition. 

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18 hours ago, Scully said:

Had a look up today and with the exception of two young lads had the entire place to ourselves. Yesterday mate had been to Lakeland Guns in Workington and bought himself a s/h Beretta AL391 Light, which he brought to try out, but our real reason for going was to practise on the high tower for a forthcoming beaters day. Along with the Beretta he had his G5 Miroku; I had my Perazzi and my Gamba, which I hadn't used for over two years as the stock was broken, but as it has now been repaired this seemed a good day to try it out. 

After signing in off we went, and at the first stand mate unsleeved his new toy, and what lovely toy it is! It has a 24" barrel, and in it he had screwed an extended/ported Benelli ( Crio? ) IC choke. It really does look the dogs danglies and with this choke would make an excellent bolting bunny gun...real ones as opposed to the clay variety. We played about on various stands and then reached the high tower, which the IC managed to break when he did his bit on the standards, but the midis were harder to get to terms with. I had put half and full in the Gamba and with it's 32" barrels it swung right through both standards and midis very smoothly, which made me smile no end. I didn't clean up but broke more than I missed on report, so more than happy. Shooting a crossing midi followed by a slower and therefore drooping standard looper from the same tower wasn't as straight forward however, and I only connected with a couple of the midis and no loopers. 

We dropped in on those stands we fancied and ignored the ones we didn't, but spent quite a few cartridges on left to right/right to left unpredictably bouncing bolting bunnies. We had great fun on this stand and I was pleasantly surprised to find those barrels swung as fast as was needed, but the real joy was using that Beretta Light with its 'drive by' stumpy barrel! What a fantastic little gun this is and a great find....great big cheesy grins all round, definitely a keeper! What an absolute joy to use! We finished off on the Skeet layout after a bit of DTL, where we ran out of cartridges, so went back to the clubhouse where Robin and her friend cooked us lunch consisting of Cheeseburger ( and a very nice burger ) and chips, a Latte each and then back to it.

This time mate had his Miroku and me the Perazzi. Had a good time on various stands we'd missed out on the first round and then tried the high tower again. Mate struggled on this stand for some reason; he is a better shot than me and high driven birds are bread and butter targets to him, but he was very inconsistent for some reason. Anyhow, although I connected with both standards and midis with the Perazzi, I grew frustrated with being unable to hit a pair, and the more I tried the worse it got; my swing felt laboured and deliberate as opposed to smooth and consistent. It wasn't until the drive home I started to believe I had gone back to lifting my head from the comb with this gun. Annoying, but not as annoying as not knowing where you're going wrong. Again I connected now and then with the crossing midi from this tower, but not the standard looper. We used the remainder of our cartridges ( best part of two boxes ) on the bolting bunny stand, where mate at one time with a well timed shot, managed to kill both with one shot as they crossed! Great fun. 😀

Back to clubhouse for another coffee. Between us we had managed to shoot 426 cartridges which cost us ( after a few deductions for empty traps etc ) £59.40 each...for clays only, we took our own cartridges. 

A grand larl day out. 🙂

We were informed that in the process of being built is a much larger clubhouse incorporating a bar, restaurant, gun dealership with in-house gunsmith, fishing tackle outlet and shop to cater for the statics, chalets and tourers. Sounds good.  👍

Edited to add that on the clubhouse notice board was a very nice looking collection ( nine I think ) of Belgian made Brownings and Mirokus for sale. 

enjoyed your write up, makes me want to have a go at clays when im next down south

Edited by islandgun

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Shot it a few times and a couple of comps, very good ground. Just wish they would connect the path to make the full loop!

For anyone who struggles with mobility they do have golf buggies you can hire too.

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8 hours ago, Perazzishot said:

Shot it a few times and a couple of comps, very good ground. Just wish they would connect the path to make the full loop!

For anyone who struggles with mobility they do have golf buggies you can hire too.

I rather think people would be in the line of fire if they connected the path to complete the loop. 

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1 hour ago, Scully said:

I rather think people would be in the line of fire if they connected the path to complete the loop. 

It has been in their plans Scully to do it, obviously either by moving some traps positions or by putting up a screen of some form to protect you from falling shot. 

Must be best part of 1Km to the Skeet stand from the office and the same back, which is also next to the last sporting stand.

1st time I was there I took my 3 kids, they were not impressed with the walk back after shooting most of the sporting stands especially as I'd told them we were getting closer to the end and the car! Whoops!

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If they have plans to do it then fair enough, but with the DTL and Skeet layouts being the last two stands the shot is more or less horizontal, so backstops would have to be substantial. I personally don't mind the walk; it gives me chance to watch others on the way back, and perhaps have another go on those stands we bypassed. 

Your kids would enjoy a buggy! 🙂

Edited by Scully

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When we go , my mate is not to good on his feet , so we hire it , i sometimes get a lift back . Sometimes we go to the last trap and work our way back to the start  , then not as far a walk when your finished .

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When I first went to Westlands , Craig Winstanley had just bought it.

All the layouts were in the wood and it was just a short walk from the car park to the stands.

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On ‎25‎/‎01‎/‎2019 at 20:53, Scully said:

Had a look up today and with the exception of two young lads had the entire place to ourselves. Yesterday mate had been to Lakeland Guns in Workington and bought himself a s/h Beretta AL391 Light, which he brought to try out, but our real reason for going was to practise on the high tower for a forthcoming beaters day. Along with the Beretta he had his G5 Miroku; I had my Perazzi and my Gamba, which I hadn't used for over two years as the stock was broken, but as it has now been repaired this seemed a good day to try it out. 

After signing in off we went, and at the first stand mate unsleeved his new toy, and what lovely toy it is! It has a 24" barrel, and in it he had screwed an extended/ported Benelli ( Crio? ) IC choke. It really does look the dogs danglies and with this choke would make an excellent bolting bunny gun...real ones as opposed to the clay variety. We played about on various stands and then reached the high tower, which the IC managed to break when he did his bit on the standards, but the midis were harder to get to terms with. I had put half and full in the Gamba and with it's 32" barrels it swung right through both standards and midis very smoothly, which made me smile no end. I didn't clean up but broke more than I missed on report, so more than happy. Shooting a crossing midi followed by a slower and therefore drooping standard looper from the same tower wasn't as straight forward however, and I only connected with a couple of the midis and no loopers. 

We dropped in on those stands we fancied and ignored the ones we didn't, but spent quite a few cartridges on left to right/right to left unpredictably bouncing bolting bunnies. We had great fun on this stand and I was pleasantly surprised to find those barrels swung as fast as was needed, but the real joy was using that Beretta Light with its 'drive by' stumpy barrel! What a fantastic little gun this is and a great find....great big cheesy grins all round, definitely a keeper! What an absolute joy to use! We finished off on the Skeet layout after a bit of DTL, where we ran out of cartridges, so went back to the clubhouse where Robin and her friend cooked us lunch consisting of Cheeseburger ( and a very nice burger ) and chips, a Latte each and then back to it.

This time mate had his Miroku and me the Perazzi. Had a good time on various stands we'd missed out on the first round and then tried the high tower again. Mate struggled on this stand for some reason; he is a better shot than me and high driven birds are bread and butter targets to him, but he was very inconsistent for some reason. Anyhow, although I connected with both standards and midis with the Perazzi, I grew frustrated with being unable to hit a pair, and the more I tried the worse it got; my swing felt laboured and deliberate as opposed to smooth and consistent. It wasn't until the drive home I started to believe I had gone back to lifting my head from the comb with this gun. Annoying, but not as annoying as not knowing where you're going wrong. Again I connected now and then with the crossing midi from this tower, but not the standard looper. We used the remainder of our cartridges ( best part of two boxes ) on the bolting bunny stand, where mate at one time with a well timed shot, managed to kill both with one shot as they crossed! Great fun. 😀

Back to clubhouse for another coffee. Between us we had managed to shoot 426 cartridges which cost us ( after a few deductions for empty traps etc ) £59.40 each...for clays only, we took our own cartridges. 

A grand larl day out. 🙂

We were informed that in the process of being built is a much larger clubhouse incorporating a bar, restaurant, gun dealership with in-house gunsmith, fishing tackle outlet and shop to cater for the statics, chalets and tourers. Sounds good.  👍

Edited to add that on the clubhouse notice board was a very nice looking collection ( nine I think ) of Belgian made Brownings and Mirokus for sale. 

Hi

Great report thank you.

I also was at the ground on Friday but not one of them young lads mine haha.

Think I arrived about 2.30 ish  and was short of time so only had a few rounds but not on the high tower.

I have a problem with eye dominance and have tried all things to correct this but last week I bought a eye dominance correction kit off pigeon watch and was eager to try this kit so wanted some simple birds to try and on that Friday that was my priority.

The kit is simple round magnets of different sizes that you place on your lenses of your safety glasses, start off with the larger magnet to start with then reduce the sizes as you get used to the fogging of the lenses

Wanted to shoot the high tower on the Friday but couldn't do everything that day so did the eye problem first.

        

I wanted to shoot a few incomers as I was shooting Bourge  nr Kirkcudbright on the pheasants on the next day (Sat) and one of the drives have high driven birds that fly high over tall woodland and some of the guns are in a low valley so great sporting shots …..if you can hit them I  missed most of them again.

At the shoot on the Saturday I was hopeless on high incomers but not to bad on fast crossers. 

So today after a great weekend  stopping with  friends at Kippford  south west Scotland I travelled home to Durham and again called into Westlands to try the high tower and only the high tower.

Stand 5 on discipline A high tower incoming high birds I was bloody hopeless and hapless at this stand and missed bird after bird I had one onlooker that just shook his head and said hard birds eh !!!!.

I came away disheartened and just lost of what to do .

I'm going for help with a Professional shooting instructor (Robert Birrell from Castle Douglas) in the next couple of weeks and hope he can sort my problem but driving home today I did think that I also may be lifting my head off the stock as I look up high to see the bird.

I will report back after instruction session.  

   

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7 minutes ago, crosswaters said:

Hi

Great report thank you.

I also was at the ground on Friday but not one of them young lads mine haha.

Think I arrived about 2.30 ish  and was short of time so only had a few rounds but not on the high tower.

I have a problem with eye dominance and have tried all things to correct this but last week I bought a eye dominance correction kit off pigeon watch and was eager to try this kit so wanted some simple birds to try and on that Friday that was my priority.

The kit is simple round magnets of different sizes that you place on your lenses of your safety glasses, start off with the larger magnet to start with then reduce the sizes as you get used to the fogging of the lenses

Wanted to shoot the high tower on the Friday but couldn't do everything that day so did the eye problem first.

        

I wanted to shoot a few incomers as I was shooting Bourge  nr Kirkcudbright on the pheasants on the next day (Sat) and one of the drives have high driven birds that fly high over tall woodland and some of the guns are in a low valley so great sporting shots …..if you can hit them I  missed most of them again.

At the shoot on the Saturday I was hopeless on high incomers but not to bad on fast crossers. 

So today after a great weekend  stopping with  friends at Kippford  south west Scotland I travelled home to Durham and again called into Westlands to try the high tower and only the high tower.

Stand 5 on discipline A high tower incoming high birds I was bloody hopeless and hapless at this stand and missed bird after bird I had one onlooker that just shook his head and said hard birds eh !!!!.

I came away disheartened and just lost of what to do .

I'm going for help with a Professional shooting instructor (Robert Birrell from Castle Douglas) in the next couple of weeks and hope he can sort my problem but driving home today I did think that I also may be lifting my head off the stock as I look up high to see the bird.

I will report back after instruction session.  

   

I feel your frustration. I think it’s a good idea to take another shooter with you when you’re having difficulties. At another ground last year I asked a mate to watch me rather than the bird on high driven clays, but was so determined to keep my head on the stock I killed most of them, and with another gun choked full and full simply blew them to bits! It’s frustrating to lapse back into old habits as I think I did after trying to kill a pair from the tower with my ‘go to’ gun.

You could try shooting the tower with your left eye closed, but I feel it hinders my spacial awareness, but then again I haven’t tried. 

I truly believe much of it is in the head. 

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