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16 October 2014
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Fecarry Range

Fecarry range was used by the military garrison in Omagh, the USC and police

Fecarry Range

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Fecarry range was used by the military garrison in Omagh, the USC and police, and the American GIs in the build up to D-Day. As well as small arms, mortars were also fired here.

A sketch map of the layout of the range is below.

Sketch map of Fecarry Range
A Sketch map of Fecarry Range

Map ref - Ordnance Survey 1:50 000 series, sheet 13, Grid Reference H 506 776.

 

Target Gallery

The 'gallery' can be clearly seen, appearing as a green, grassy bank to the north of the Glencurry Bridge.

The Gallery comprises a concrete shuttered wall faced on the danger side with a bank of grass covered clay. This arrangement would have stopped bullets and the clay would have prevented ricochets off the concrete.

Inside the Gallery there are iron brackets that would have supported benches for the 'butt party' to rest on. Along the top of the gallery wall on the inside are brackets that would have supported a roof. Inside the gallery there is a row of timber posts that served as mountings for 'windmill targets'. These targets were mounted on a bolt projecting from the post and would have been secured with a 'wing nut'.

Diagrams of types of targets used at Fecarry

Butts

The 'stop butts' quite simply stopped the bullets to the rear of the targetry. At Fecarry the slope of the glen was the stop butt. The effects of innumerable lead bullets lying buried in the slope are seen today in the paucity of vegetation cover there.

 

Firing Points

The 'firing points' were low banks raised above the surrounding surface of the range. Firers lay/stood/kneeled on these banks to engage targets. At Fecarry they are laid out at 100, 200 and 300 yards.

The 200 yard firing point is shuttered with tin sheets. It is immediately north west of the gateway on the northern side of the road on the straight after the bridge and bend.

 

Troop Shelter and Target Shed

Sheets of tin lying on the ground are all that remains of the troop shelter that once was sited at the 200 yard firing point. This is where firers would have sheltered from the elements and brewed tea.

The target shed is still standing at the north west end of the gallery. There are some targets inside.

Have you ever visited Fecarry Range or one of the other ranges on Mullaghcarn Mountain? Have you heard any stories from those who remember the Americans training? Share your information, reply to this article at the bottom of the page or e-mail ypam-online@bbc.co.uk

 

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