The National Rifle Association, Its Tramways and the London and South Western Railways

Pen & Sword Books Ltd

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The National Rifle Association (NRA) was founded in the mid-nineteenth century and was granted a Royal Charter of Incorporation by Queen Victoria in 1890. It was created for the encouragement of the Rifle Corps of the newly formed Volunteer Movement and the promotion of rifle shooting throughout Great Britain.

This would be accomplished by establishing a great Annual National Meeting, where marksmen could compete for valuable prizes and ensuring that the location was easily accessible to all comers over the developing railway network.

Situated in Bisley, some 35 miles from London, the base of RNA had very little infrastructure and soon enough, the Council invested, buying land and providing permanent accommodation. The London and South Western Railway Company built a spur from Brookwood Station to accommodate the camp whilst the tramway was relaid to connect the camp and ranges. The original range layout still remains today in its basic form. Nowadays, the NRA is predominantly concerned with civilian full-bore target rifle shooting, yet it still maintains its military heritage and continues its links with the British Armed Forces.

The book relates the extraordinary relationship which developed between the NRA and, primarily, the London and South Western Railway Company and its successors in fulfilling these aims, together with the fascinating story of the associations own unique tramways.

150 colour and b/w illustrations, maps and timetables

About the Author

Christopher Bunch was born in Hampshire, where he still lives today. Whilst following a career with an international telecommunications company, he led tours of duty in Kenya, Mauritius, the Middle East and the Caribbean, before finally settling back in Britain. In retirement, after a spell in consultancy, he took up an interest in history. He acts as a part-time research assistant at the National Rifle Association Museum at Bisley and has written articles for the NRA Journal and the South Western Circular. In addition, he has also undertaken First World War studies for his local history society.