There is still a lot more we can do to help encourage more women into the world of shooting. The sport has transformed greatly over the years and is opening up to new generations and backgrounds of people, not just the stereotypical farmers, gentry and typical country types donning their traditional flat caps and heavy tweeds. You will see doctors, business owners, students and retired folk all enjoying the delights of being in the field.
With trying to steer away from previous misconceptions about the sport and its heavily male dominance it’s refreshing to hear that the sport is becoming vastly more accessible. With more clay shooting grounds holding open ladies days in the hope that the introduction to shooting can be as soft and as welcoming as possible in the hope that ladies choose to continue and eventually get into game shooting too. Getting into these wonderful ladies days is sometimes the only way of making friends for some as they offer camaraderie and support for many with friendly instructors and hosts.
Clubs include Femme Fatales, The Chelsea Bun Club and BASC over ladies shooting days too all of which are held around the UK. These clubs not only offer a friendly hub to all women new to the sport but nurture enthusiasm and help build a solid understanding and rid the misconception they have of the shooting world.
Not only do these clubs offer clay shooting but even promote the inclusion of game days too, urging them to take part in driven game as part of the club. Many do large bird days but with shared pegs. This is friendly, reassuring and fun but also eliminates anyone getting left out and keeps the cost down for something that may well be not as affordable as a single peg.
Shoots are always very welcoming of a lady gun. It can be very refreshing having a females presence on a shoot, it adds diversity and of course, keeps the gentlemen on their toes. It brings out the best in people and some of the best shots in the industry are women who can really hold their own in the field.
Numbers of female shooters are rising, figures show the numbers of women joining BASC has risen a third over the past four years. The association welcomed 1,212 women in 2011 compared with 1,603 in 2015 and now has 10,000 female members.