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Clay club aiming high PDF Print E-mail
15 May, 2014 - Richard Lilley has been taking aim at clay targets for 45 years.
His father and grandfather were no slouches, either.
Mr Lilley is president of the Methven Clay Target Club, and the weekend of May 24-25 will be a special one.
That is when the club's new range in a forestry block and near the Rakaia River, opens.
It features a club house moved to the site, skeet towers and clay target sites and its development has been a labour of love.
Members worked closely with the Ashburton council over the past five years to lease land at the end of Wightmans Road, Methven.
The land was a forestry block and, as such, had to be developed from scratch.
This work was undertaken by the eight members of the committee - now just seven with the death of Rob Montgomery.
The true cost of the project would be close to $500,000 but committee members have donated time and money and resources to get it finished.
Many local companies have also donated resources.
The club will carry the financial of the project for some time but members believe the club has a strong future.
It started in 1925 at the Methven Domain and in 1928 they moved to a shared ground with the Methven Trotting Club, and were there until 2009 when the club needed to move with that area being developed.
The Methven club has been able to hold its shoots at the Ashburton clay target grounds for the past few years, enabling the club to stay alive.
Many Methven shooters have represented the region and New Zealand, including Doug Salton, Sam Holmes, Shane Watson and Greg Middleton.
Mr Lilley's great uncle, Sam Anderson, has been included in the New Zealand shooters hall of fame. He held national titles for pigeon and clay targets shooting.
Mr Lilley's son is also a keen shooter.
The Methven club welcomes shooters and those interested in the sport to the weekend.
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