This competition is an annual shoot held for Home Counties provinces to compete against each other annually and hosted by one of them by nomination from the others. East Kent applied to host the 2018 shoot as it was their tenth anniversary since forming the provincial club. The date was chosen, 16th June 2018, the venue was also agreed as Dartford Clay Shooting Ground and the invitations were sent out, The club also hold an annual “Clay Shooting Challenge” each year so it was agreed to include this as a part of the day’s events allowing us to invite provinces from further afield. The Home Counties are generally accepted to be those within an hour’s travel from parliament or more specifically the Palace of Westminster and are accepted as, Kent, Essex, Surrey, Sussex, Middlesex, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Berkshire but this is very much open to interpretation.
The day arrived and we were hosts to nine provinces and eighty three shooters, it began with a full English Breakfast for all of those taking part followed by a brief safety talk before the assembled squads took off for their respective starting points. The weather was also very kind to us and we also had the pleasure of welcoming the Deputy Provincial Grand Master – In Charge who went round the full course with the Chairman and Secretary of the East Kent shooters. He also was given the opportunity to shoot some clays himself while the scores were being collated being coached by Tony Playford who is also a member of the DPGM’s Mother Lodge 4050.
The day was a great time for masons and their non-masonic guests to share the sport of clay shooting which has a huge following within freemasonry, however now was the time to announce the winners and the Winners of the “Home Counties Inter-Provincial Competition” 2018 was the Metropolitan Grand Lodge whose top three scores totalled 251. The next highest score and therefore the winners of the “East Kent Annual Clay Shooting Challenge” was the East Kent team with a score of 223.
The runners up in this category were West Kent with a score of 202.
Following this was the Masonic High Gun winner with a score of 92/100 from again the Metropolitan Grand Lodge and also from London was the runner up scoring 80/100. Winner of the Non-Masonic team shoot were London’s guests, the Vitruvians scoring 218 with the runners up our guests from Norfolk also with a score of 218 but coming second after ‘Count Back’.
The Non-Masonic High Gun was won by our guest from Hertfordshire scoring 82 and last but by no means least was the ladies winner from Middlesex with a score of 40/100.
Another great day for the masonic shooters of East Kent along with their guests from the eight other provinces, our DPGM – In Charge presented all of the trophies and enjoyed a full day with the provincial team who had hosted the event with the final words from Nick Jenkins the East Kent Chairman thanking the DPGM for supporting us, to everyone attending for their time and effort, the East Kent Secretary W.Bro. Roger Wilkes who had arranged the day. Closing he wished everyone well and a very safe journey home.