LibLink: Paul Tyler on target practice

targetIn a recent post on Lord of the Blogs, Paul Tyler asks where the elusive Parliamentary rifle range is to be found.

For some years, while I was still an MP, there were regular requests for this apparently anachronistic  facility, somewhere in the basement, to be replaced with a creche for the children of staff and members of both Houses.  One Conservative MP naughtily suggested that the two roles could be combined.

Some years ago Nick Clegg said that it was absurd that parliament should have a shooting range and not a creche. A creche has now been provided elsewhere, but the rifle range is still a mystery.

A question in the Commons had elicited the information that it was to be found at the Lords end of the Palace, so was their responsibility. This spurred Lord Tyler to ask what the rifle range cost the House of Lords:

The Chairman of Committees (Lord Sewel): No such figures are available. The rifle range uses minimal amounts of lighting, but it is not possible to calculate the particular costs attributable to the rifle range. The House does not incur any other costs in relation to the rifle range, other than in respect of that percentage of general estate costs which is paid for by the House.

Paul Tyler muses:

More mystery.  If this facility costs the taxpayer almost nothing, who runs this outfit?  Who is responsible for the security of the rifles and their ammunition?  Surely selected members are not permitted to wander round the building with them?  Is this not a potential weakness in our otherwise tight security?  And who pays for that security?   I tried phoning the Rifle Range (ext 3350 if you want to know), to get answers to these questions, but it rang without anyone answering.

This is all very unsettling.  If the House authorities are not responsible, who is?  To whom should I target my questions now?

 

* Mary Reid is a contributing editor on Lib Dem Voice. She was a councillor in Kingston upon Thames and is a member of Federal Conference Committee.

Read more by or more about , or .
This entry was posted in LibLink.
Advert

4 Comments

  • Why is it such a problem if they have a rifle range in Parliament? It’s a popular sport that was seen at the recent Olympics. It’s a particularly good sport for disabled and infirm people. I can’t understand why there is any concern about this.

  • As long as Cameron isn’t thinking of being the first prime minister since the Duke of Wellington to fight a duel. On the other hand…

  • Michael Parsons 31st Jan '13 - 11:07pm

    Unless you have serious concerns as to the mental stabiity of some MP’s who might run amock if the weapons are of semi-military type, it seems nothing but a good idea; and good even so wth safegauards against the more obviously crazy members of the Casbinet. Perhaps you should ask the Speaker to check their access to and the safety of the kit.

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

To have your photo next to your comment please signup your email address with Gravatar.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?

Advert



Recent Comments

  • User AvatarPeter Hirst 16th Jan - 3:06pm
    A wise politician, especially a Westminster one might say that (s)he is not the wisest person to make these constitutional decision, being too easily influenced...
  • User Avatarnvelope2003 16th Jan - 3:05pm
    David Raw: The point I was trying to make was that restoring a railway can be cheaper than widening a road but it might not...
  • User AvatarNigel Jones 16th Jan - 3:04pm
    The two Davids are thinking in one of the right lines, but we need both their suggested policy action approach AND a positive vision for...
  • User AvatarJoe Bourke 16th Jan - 3:00pm
    Peter Martin, Jennie's comment is on her own lived personal experiences: "It’s not metropolitan elitist to say that many leave voters voted the way they...
  • User AvatarJenny Barnes 16th Jan - 2:59pm
    This here people's vote. What's the question? You can hardly put TM's annihilated deal on the ballot, after what happened to it in Parliament. And...
  • User AvatarSean Hagan 16th Jan - 2:43pm
    Thank you, David Raw, for reminding us about the Jenkins Commission and the other political realities which made it impossible to extract a commitment from...