SPECIAL WE LOVE PETERBOROUGH OFFER: 1642 Field Sports have happily decided to give you a 15% discount on bookings of 3 or more when trying out an hour’s session or longer. The offer is valid for bookings placed up to and including 31st May 2021, including dates booked for beyond that date. (eg. book on 15th May for 3 people to attend in July – you can still take advantage of the discount) Simply add this voucher code in the website on booking: WLP15 – book here: www.1642FieldSports.co.uk

What an enjoyable Saturday morning we had this weekend. We were invited by 1642 Field Sports up to their Sacrewell Farm location to see exactly what they do and offer to everyone and, of course, participate in a few sports whilst we were there. We had a mixed hour of slingshots, rifle shooting, archery, pistol shooting and, wait for it, AXE THROWING.

The range

Once you’ve come through reception at Sacrewell you have a fairly long walk (for those less mobile please be aware) straight down to the Mill area. You’ll see them straight away up on the hill to the right. (You can go round the back of the Mill for a flat walk or in front of the Mill and up some stairs). They are situated near the Mill’s pond and the farmer’s fields at the top in a nice quiet area. (Also there are public toilets within the mill)

John & Matt greeted us with smiles, eager to show us what they’d been up to during lockdown in moving from their original location to this new one. It’s a great layout where you can either try different sports in your session or simply do just one that appeals to you. Every step of the way is covid safe with individual screens between the booths, hand sanitiser to be used before and after gaming and all items used by you are then sanitised afterwards, ready for the next user.

Slingshot practice

First up was the slingshot with some hung shapes like bottles, a stag’s head, a cat’s head in the target shed, and when it’s Halloween they have pumpkins, witches, black cats, etc., to make it a bit more fun. Glasses on and with full instruction given we were away. Gosh, it’s harder than it looks. It’s a little fiddly getting used to getting the small steel ball into the sling, but once you’ve mastered that, you’re away. You can choose to have paintballs instead of steel balls – the only problem for me was being able to pull it back far enough for shooting. You need a bit of force and a strong arm (which I don’t in my left arm) It was still great fun and I managed to hit a couple of targets on my first attempts. Whoop.

On to the axe and knife throwing area. A selection of boards to presented and you are shown exactly how to throw and more importantly about picking up your weapons once finished. No one can throw when someone is in the sand. You must remove those from the board first and hold the board to remove your knife/axe, then pick your others, that missed as there will be few of those initially. Once back on your spot, everyone can continue. Again it takes a little time to get used to how to throw, when to let go and how firm to throw. A few more attempts and they start to stick. I went with the Angel axes as they have more points to attack with so out of every 3 thrown I managed to get 1 or 2 attach. So quite pleased. My husband went to have a go with the others you can try, which are axes and knives – all with their own instruction.

Archery

Next was the archery. Clear tuition to show you how to place your arrows and not to have a straight arm when aiming otherwise you’ll get stung by the bow’s string. Hold up to your cheek and then let go once’s you’ve aimed for your target. Out in the field are various lengths for the targets for different skills. I went for the nearest today being a beginner. First attempt and I’m on the target, albeit in the white area, and I managed 4 out of my 6 arrows. Well done I think. Both adult and junior size bows are available.

On to the air rifle range with a pack of tiny pellets, very fiddly to get into the small hole, close it up, aim, safety off and fire. You can either do this standing up or sitting down. I chose to sit down and use a telescopic-sight air rifle. My targets this time were a rat, a cat, crows, ducks along with lots of others spread over a lengthy terrain for different distances to try. Quite pleased with myself for being able to hold the gun still enough to aim and fire. I used the option of a lighter rifle as the main one was too heavy. I really enjoyed this. It takes time to open, load, closed, aim, fire, but once you get into the swing of it, you’re away. As you get better you can aim for coloured discs, small and within the targets, which when hit will pop upwards. I missed.

Aim – Fire

On from here to the next booth, it was very similar, but this time with break barrel air pistols. Similar pellets to load but this time the targets are much closer on a board and are made of paper. There are different ways to stand, but aiming will be with a small v and the end of the pistol – red dot. Again I managed at least a couple of hits and enjoyed this area too.

If you’re a fan of guns you can book out try your hand with some of their premium firearms so if you fancy yourself as either John Wayne or even a James Bond – the guns are there. (Contact John or Matt before you book as these are a great extra paid for treat for someone)

During your allotted time your instruction will stay with you, ensuring you get full tuition. You’ll get the most out of your visit aiming to at least hit something whilst you are there. Both John and Matt were professional in their tuition, explaining every bit of the way with reasons behind why things are done how they are. This is a serious activity, but also lots of fun. You don’t have to pick just one element, e.g. the rifle range you can have a session which covers a set of areas, just as we did, or pick and mix with 1 or 2 of your favourite ones  – the choice is very flexible.

We weren’t alone at our session there was a family there with Dad Cody taking our Carta for some archery – great to see. It’s also a good activity for a family with the kids. (Anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a responsible adult, whether a paying participant or not and must remain on site at all times. Also, although there are adult and junior weapons, if the weapon is too heavy or large to handle they won’t be allowed it won’t be safe – please check for ages suitable for each activity beforehand)

Although this is a very serious activity it is very enjoyable. Ideal for a group of friends, a birthday party with a difference, as they can supply food if you want to have something to eat) and great for some workmate bonding events – like taking out that aggression for your boss with the axe boards. (only kidding). You don’t have to be a group, it can be just you and you can even have one to one tuition organised (contact them before with your requirements).

I hope you do go and try them out as it is an informative and enjoyable session, even if you’ve never touched a weapon before, you get a bit more respect for them. We two will definitely be back for the air rifle and air pistol ranges. For more information, you’ll find them on Facebook @1642FieldSports and you can book online on their website at www.1642fieldsports.co.uk

You could even combine it with a day spent enjoying Sacrewell Farm as there is so much to do with your families or a visit to their courtyard Artisans for some great small business products like chocolate or gin. (including our very own #LovePink which you’ll need to order online before you go and then collect).

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