Shoot for the target with free holiday crossbow sessions in Manchester’s parks

Anyone bored of the summer holidays and looking for some excitement can take part in some free crossbow sessions available in Fallowfield  and Gorton tomorrow.

The event runs from 9 am to 12 noon in Platt Fields Park, but if you miss that one there’s another chance to give some inanimate objects a good shooting from 1 pm to 4 pm at Debdale Park, off Hyde Road.

Anyone above the age of five can turn up and practise firing a crossbow like a bloodthirsty medieval warrior, but there’s no need for parents to worry.

The session will be run by qualified scout leader and owner of Outdoor Adventures, Chris Kippax, who has completed his NSRA YPS Sport Crossbow qualification.

He said: “We’ll be using a sports crossbow on Wednesday, which is the type of crossbow I bring for the events like this I’ve done in the past.

“Typically, that model uses around 150 pounds of pressure, but that sort of power would mean people couldn’t cock the crossbow once they’ve fired a shot, so I always reduce the pressure down to 40 pounds.

“This makes it about as powerful as a bow and arrow.

“It’s a huge reduction and makes it so much safer.

“I also show everyone a demonstration at the beginning so they can quickly pick up on what they’re supposed to be doing.”

Chris explained that he does often get young children wanting to take part, and he makes to give them extra help.

He said: “I’ve had children as young as eight take part in these events before, and when they do I hold the crossbow for them and cock it myself.

“They get to fire it, but I’m in complete control the whole time.

“I’m a scout leader, so I’ve had thorough training in how to use these instruments.”

 “Parents don’t have to spend any money and kids love it because it’s something completely different to what they’re used to.

“I usually start getting crowds coming in about 15 minutes after I start.”

If you can’t make crossbow shooting this week, there are a number of future events to look forward to.

Next week, Chris and Outdoor Adventures will be offering backwards cooking, where participants will learn to cook over a fire they’ve created themselves using traditional methods such as flint.

The week after that will bring more archery lessons and the chance to throw some tomahawks, the one-handed axes famously used by the Native Americans.

For more details visit or find them on Facebook.

Image courtesy of Crossbow Nation via YouTube, with thanks.

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