Hill Top shooting range closed

Hill Top range shut down suddenly with no explanation

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One of Australia’s biggest shooting facilities, the Southern Highlands Regional Shooting Complex (SHRSC or Hill Top range) has been closed suddenly and indefinitely, with little information provided about why.

The shutdown happened very quickly with little warning, according to people we have spoken to, forcing clubs to abandon all planned shooting activities there.

The only official word about the shutdown is a brief statement issued by the NSW Office of Sport, which runs the complex.

“Southern Highlands Regional Shooting Complex will be closed from Friday, 9 September until further notice while an operational and safety review is conducted. We apologise for any inconvenience,” it said.

A staffer at the Office of Sport said they had been given the same statement as a script and were told not to make any other comment to anyone. 

Rumours circulated that the closure was ordered by the police, but information provided by NSW Police indicated the closure was a result of action undertaken by the Office of Sport, and that police played no part in it.

Unconfirmed reports suggest a safety issue was found on the 500m range but this would not explain why the entire facility was closed.

Unconfirmed reports suggest a safety issue was found on the 500m range but this would not explain why the entire facility was closed.

A person connected to the range, who did not want to be named, said no one expected the shutdown.

“There was a five-second phone call yesterday to everyone saying the range would be shut,” he said.

Another source with a lot of experience in shooting-related issues said the situation “stinks”.

“The suggestion that it was closed down for a review is a pretext,” he said. 

“If that’s truly the case, why was it closed down without warning rather than everyone being given notice of a planned disruption to activities?”

The What’s On page of the complex’s website has no listings of any upcoming events.

Both Robert Borsak and Mark Banasiak of the Shooters Fishers and Farmers Party were trying to get answers as this story was published.




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Mick Matheson

Mick grew up with guns and journalism, and has included both in his career. A life-long hunter, he has long-distant military experience and holds licence categories A, B and H. In the glory days of print media, he edited six national magazines in total, and has written about, photographed and filmed firearms and hunting for more than 15 years.

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