HC Deb 27 March 1911 vol 23 cc1092-3W

asked the Secretary of State for War whether the difficulty in obtaining extended accommodation for ranges for the use of the Territorial Forces consists in the War Office not having been able to select suitable land for ranges, or in having selected it, not having the necessary funds available to purchase it with and to construct the ranges thereon; how many rifle ranges were available for use by the Territorial Forces, independently of those used by the Regular Forces, at the date when the Territorial Forces were first organised; in how many instances has land been acquired for rifle ranges for the use of the Territorial Forces, independently of those used by the Regular Forces, since the first organisation of the Territorial Forces; how many rifle ranges used by the Territorial Forces have been closed since the organisation of those forces, and how many of that number were closed owing to their proximity to golf links; and how many rifle ranges are there available for use by the Territorial Forces that are also used by the Regular Forces?


The difficulty in obtaining extended range accommodation for the Territorial Force is due to the fact that in thickly populated districts suitable sites cannot easily be obtained unless exorbitant prices are paid for their purchase. The number of ranges available for the Territorial Force, when the latter were first organised three years ago, was 883. In a large number of cases the range accommodation has been improved by the addition of target to existing ranges, but no actual purchase of land for new ranges has been made since the formation of the Territorial Force, though negotiations for the purchase of a number of sites are in progress at the present time. Fifty-two ranges have been closed in the past three years, five of them having been closed through the action of golf clubs. All rifle ranges are available for use either by Regulars or Territorials, and at the present time the Territorials use sixty-four ranges which are in charge of Regulars, and Regulars use sixteen ranges in charge of Territorials.