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Historical Breechloading Smallarms Association [HBSA]

Historical Breechloading Smallarms Association [HBSA]

Arms have always played a central role, not just in military and social history, but in technological and industrial development, art and culture. Great Britain has been in the forefront of the development of the modern firearm.

The Historical Breechloading Smallarms Association was founded in 1973 to encourage the preservation of breechloading firearms and to foster study of all the aspects from the aesthetics of the sporting gunmaker and engraver's art to the functional equipment of the soldier or target shooter.

The Collector
With their limited resources, museums have always, been dependent on the private collector, not only for forming the collections on which so many of them a based, but in continuing to take a substantial, active and informed part in the preservation of the Nation's heritage.

Whether that patrimony be of fine decorative art, arms, aircraft, cars, ships or steam engines, collectors and museums are increasing working together in the preservation of our past.

Preservation must be accompanied by understanding and private individuals can often afford to undertake detailed research into their chosen subject at a level now all too frequently beyond the resources of museums. The use of arms can provide considerable insight and has become an important aspect of study into design, reliability and accuracy, as well as affording a clearer understanding of military tactics. The H.B.S.A. encourages such research as one of its main aims. The President's Cup may be awarded for outstanding research in its field.

Communication of Knowledge
The Association also seeks to make accessible the fruits of research. It holds monthly lectures at the Imperial War Museum in London and at the Royal Armouries in Leeds. New material is published in the Association's `Journal' and in its quarterly bulletin, "REPORT". Exhibitions and seminars are held, and members may give presentations to other interest groups as well as to the general public.

The Association arranges range practices to enable recreation as well as study. Competitive shooting with "Classic", "Veteran" and "Vintage" arms has long been an established part of the target shooting scene in Britain and internationally. The H.B.S.A. encourages this with both Open and Closed Competitions.

Since its inception, the H.B.S.A. has taken a leading role in ensuring that the nation’s heritage of arms and the interests of its collectors are protected under the law, and has been successful in its aims at both national and European levels. It also provides an unparalleled source of information for those involved in the legislative process, and holds symposia at national and international levels.

The Association has been organised on a national and regional basis. It is a member of F.E.S.A.C., the Federation of European Societies of Arms Collectors. It is also a Home Office Approved Rifle Club. Membership is by election, and it offers two classes of full membership, which require active participation, corresponding membership for supporters at home or overseas, institutional membership and club affiliation.

Details about membership or branches may be obtained from: BCM HBSA, The Hon Secretary, LONDON, WC1N 3XX.

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