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Binn Hill Rifle Range

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View from butts, 2008
View from butts
© Ann Burgess

Binn Hill Rifle Range is a live firing range located on the north east coast of Scotland, east of RAF Lossiemouth and north of Elgin.

The area is leased from Forest Enterprise (an agency of the Forestry Commission), has ten lanes, and is part of a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). It may be used as an alternate to the facilities at Fort George, and lies close to another small training area used only for dry firing.

Live firing activity on the range is indicated by the flying of red flags from observation towers on the range access, which are also reported to be manned when the range is live, therefore caution should be exercised if the red flags are flying. The danger area shown on the OS map extends past the end of the range/butts, and out into the sea.

World War II

The record for the site area reports that a rifle range was located north of the Binn Hill, but that the target were not in view, and suggests that this may mean that the extended range seen today is postwar.

The southern end of the range has a number of building remains which appear to date from World War II.

One is clearly a large Nissen hut, which is now derelict.

The other is less well-defined, and much of the structure has been lost, however the photographs show it was a small Nissen type hut with an arched corrugated metal roof. Although this has been lost, the outline can still be seen the wall of a brick-built annexe into which the corrugated metal roof was set. Within the annexe, there appears to be two concrete bases, and the remains of fuel and exhaust pipes in the wall, suggesting the annexe was an engine room, and contained an engine, which would be assumed to have been driving a generator to provide electrical power to the site.

The wartime report also identifies a ground marker approximately 50 metres to the northeast of these buildings, an arrow with its apex pointing northeast, which would have been used for aircraft navigation.


Range butts

Target mechanisms

Observation and flag towers

World War II building remains

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Related Canmore/RCAHMS and ScotlandsPlaces (SP) entries:-



Aerial views



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