The B.H.P. Rifle Club was formed on the 15th January, 1930 in a meeting held by members of B.H.P. company employees and some representatives from the rifle shooting movement in the rooms of the Y.M.C.A., which were located in King Street, Newcastle. The club was one of a number that were formed in that period by employees of some of the secondary industries that existed in Newcastle at that time. These rifle clubs operated under the Rifle Club Regulations of the Defence Act.
The Club’s inaugural shoot was conducted by 24 shooters at the Adamstown Rifle Range on the 8th March, 1930 over a distance of 300 yards. This match consisted of two 5-shot stages at a cost of 2 shillings per shooter.
Adamstown Rifle Range could accommodate shooting distances from 300 to 800 yards and was located south of the present military base which is located off Brunker Road, Adamstown.
The last official club shoot at the Adamstown facility was held on the 27th June, 1953.
B.H.P. Rifle Club and other civilian clubs (Lysaghts, Stewarts and Lloyds etc) were relocated by the Defence Department to Stockton Rifle Range on the 11th July, 1953. This range could accommodate shooting distances from 100 to 1000 yards and consisted of 5 blocks, each of 10 targets. This was an active military range which was located south of the World War II Ordnance Proving Range on the Stockton Peninsula.
In 1988 Service Rifle shooting was introduced into B.H.P. Rifle Club and is still shot today.
The Club shot regularly on this rifle range over 40 years. The last official shoot on Stockton Rifle Range by B.H.P. Rifle Club was a 1000 yard match of 15 shots and this was conducted on the 13th December, 1997.
In the mid-1990’s the Rifle Club Regulations under the Defence Act were repealed. The Australian Defence Force decided that the Stockton Rifle Range was surplus to requirements and civilian rifle clubs were instructed that the range would close. Despite a concerted effort over many months by many club members to acquire the Stockton Rifle Range, the Defence Department closed this facility.
The only option available to permit the continued existence of the Club was to move to the Cessnock Rifle Range facility and this occurred after negotiations with the Range Licence holders on the 7th February, 1998. Cessnock Rifle Range has one block of seven targets and supports matches from 100 to 900 yards.
Additionally, the Service Rifle Group of B.H.P. Rifle Club has also used the facilities of Gloucester Rifle Range since 1998.