VISUALLY-impaired people have been proving they are spot on when it comes to shooting practice.

Through the use of special rifles, around 30 people who would normally not be able to shoot were given a chance to show their marksmanship.

The event was open to visually-impaired people from across East Lancashire and was organised by Ken Nash, chairman of shooting for British Blind Sport.

He brought along the rifles, which send out a light beam to a target 10 metres away.

The light causes the target to emit a sound and the higher the pitch the closer the shooter is to the bullseye.

Some of those having a go proved they were such a good shot they hit the 11 millimetre bullseye first time at the event hosted by Blackburn Rifle and Pistol Club, Dickens Street.

Visually-impaired Hanif Patel, from Blackburn, whose sight deteriorated five years ago, hit two bulleyes.

He said: “It was nice to do it, I hit one bullseye on my first attempt.

“This was something unusual and different.

“I have never tried anything like this before.”

Following the interest from the event the club is hoping to apply to Sport England, initially for a £4,000 grant, to be the first in the North West to create two 10-metre shooting ranges for the blind and visually impaired.

The club has members from across East Lancashire, including hearing-impaired Ingrid Falat-Marsh, 51, from Crawshawbooth, who said having facilities for visually-impaired people would be a great boost for the club.

Mrs Falat-Marsh, who helped at the event, said: “Even though I am hearing impaired I joined the club and have won gold medals in competitions.

“I have to take out my hearing aids to shoot but in one way it makes it better to concentrate.”

John Lloyd, chairman of the club, which is one of the top five clubs in the UK and has 200 members, said: “This is a first for the club and it has been very popular.”

Mr Nash, who also represents the National Small-Bore Rifle Association, added: “People who are blind or visually impaired can become very good shooters and can compete with those who do not have disabilities.

“They only rely on the sense of sound where as those who can see and hear can become confused by the two senses.”