Keys to the Past

North Close Rifle Range, North Close, Kirk Merrington (North Close)

A rifle range was established here in the late 19th century, first appearing on the second edition Ordnance Survey maps of 1894-1899 (1). The range is shown as extending at least 1000 yards from a spring close to North Close, north of Kirk Merrington, northeast towards the targets in a clearing in a plantation marked as Fox Covert. The range is still marked on the fourth epoch OS maps (2) but has disappeared by the time of the fifth epoch maps of the 1950's (3), the only feature marked on the map being the target area within the clearing. The lifespan of the range suggests that it might have been in use as a military training ground during the First World War and WW2.

Reference number:D50081
Historical period: Victorian (1837 to 1901)
First World War (1914 to 1918)
Mid 20th Century (1933 to 1966)
Second World War (1939 to 1945)

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Please note that this information has been compiled from a number of different sources. Durham County Council and Northumberland County Council can accept no responsibility for any inaccuracy contained therein. If you wish to use/copy any of the images, please ensure that you read the Copyright information provided.