British Airsoft Show 2013 Review

Posted by Yosser H On Friday, February 15, 2013

Airsoft Odyssey
@ British Airsoft Show
- Review by Yosser


Racks of guns @ British Shooting Show
De-Acts @ British Shooting ShowHalls @ British Shooting ShowTAG Airsoft @ British Shooting ShowRedwolf Booth @ British Shooting ShowJD Airsoft fun @ British Shooting ShowSiG's @ British Shooting ShowBadgertac RPG @ British Shooting ShowA SQN @ British Shooting ShowFun with A-SQN @ British Shooting ShowM27 on ARMEX Booth @ British Shooting ShowPistols at ARMEX Booth @ British Shooting ShowRedWolf gun wall @ British Shooting ShowAIPSC Shooting with the Grange @ British Shooting ShowKriss Vector from Milspec Solutions @ British Shooting Show

Wow what a HUGE event for British Airsoft to be part of the British Shooting Show at Stoneleigh Park over the weekend of the 9th & 10th of February 2013. An event of such magnitude that Airsoft could ‘finally’ come in from the cold (literally on this occasion, such were the weather conditions) and join the wider shooting community and show its mettle to a much larger and diverse community of shooters.


Such an early start for me, from the cold northern wastes, to travel down for the first day’s events in the Midlands arriving at the venue in a flurry of snow and cold weather. Pre-booked tickets and Priority Parking shouldn’t be a problem I thought. I arrived early and went to check out where everything was and maybe grab a bacon butty, so I planned. I was shocked when a saw a huge queue waiting for doors open at 08:30hrs but thought no more of it until I learned that this was the entrance for the ‘advanced’ tickets, add to that fact that I was parked a fair distance away. I judged it impractical to keep nipping back to the car for various pieces of camera/video equipment so made the effort to ‘yomp’ back to the car now and carry it ALL. I got back to the queue and it had doubled in the 10 or 15 minutes it had taken. You could hear all the concerned radio chatter between the event marshals about the weather and the queue, so they started letting us all in early – result. I’m still surprised though that ‘purchase’ at the door tickets got in quicker which was the subject of a fair few show goers moans and gripes. I believe poor souls arriving much later to the event had large traffic queues to contend with, many taking over an hour to get into the venue – it paid to be early in that case! Gripes over, on with it!


Entering the doors into Hall1 – well WOW, just simply Wow! – everything and more I’ve ever wanted to see in the UK! Okay maybe not the scale of Shot Show or IWA but simply fantastic for gun enthusiasts of all shapes and sizes so that’s why it describes itself as the largest public shooting & gun show in the UK & Europe! Everything for gun sports, simply everything, far too numerous to describe here!


AIRSOFT! But what about the airsoft I hear you shout. Well, for me all the ‘other’ stuff was a distraction from the airsoft but it was great to see real examples of classic weapons from Enfields, BAR’s to MG42’s and more, plus more modern sniper rifles and night vision gear, not forgetting the racks upon racks of guns and shot guns. Anyway tucked at the back of the last hall, occupying just the tiniest fraction of space just after the gun ranges was the airsoft section. Not a huge presence but what was there was quality with retailers like JD Airsoft, Redwolf, Milspec Solutions, The Grange plus many others. Also great to see Armex in attendance with their stable of Airsoft guns to show case, plus the New Umarex M27 on show and their new range of Airsoft ‘sets’ where you get a AEG and a GBB pistol in one ‘starter’ set. Airsoft Action were in attendance (of course!)– where I ran into the new (and eagerly awaited) PTS PDR which was getting loads of attention from airsofters who were able to get a feel and close-up look at the AEG for the 1st time in the UK.


Many retailers even had their own mini range areas near their stands, which gave people a great opportunity to try out various models. Pro-Airsoft Supplies gave me a great run through of their G&G M.E.T.s system (Multifunctional Electronic Target) which they had active on their range plus a great selection of G&G weapons – just loved the GK5c.


Such events are GOLD to airsoft Bloggers and YouTubers so plenty of them to be seen around busily filming and producing articles for their channels and great to met up with many of them – shout out to Op-Tactical who were doing some cool vids at the show from Toby & Woodrow, plus the guys from Popular Airsoft who always give us great coverage & video from these events so keep an eye out for their stuff being published.


Sterling Airsoft provided some great demo’s of action in their ‘CQB Village’ with flash bangs, Land Rover assaults and Fast Rope action it kept the crowds entertained and gave the public a taste of fast paced adrenaline fuelled airsoft action who were able to view the action safely from the hall via viewing windows – great idea and totally cool to watch!


Saturday was a manically busy day for crowds, with lots of the wider shooting community coming down to see what airsoft was all about and I hope leaving with a positive image of UK airsoft. Whilst Sunday seemed positively sedate by comparison but still busy. The guys from UKAPU even signed up more new members which is great news (yes, I’m a member also). One thing that did surprise some of the real gun owning public, why on earth, with a full fire arms license, they couldn’t purchase a RIF! Hopefully this event helped highlight the stupidity (misalignment) of some of our gun laws in this country (specifically the VCRA act) and the fact that airsoft is strictly controlled with both the good and bad that comes of that.


This is truly a Great Event and one that must be capitalised on by the UK Airsoft community as a whole. I think it showed the hobby, sport, past-time call it what you will in a positive light and gave us a great opportunity and shop window. I felt airsoft came of age and grew up and stood shoulder to shoulder with the other shooting sports and that ‘they’ although wary are seeing opportunities and growth in the area that is Airsoft.


NEXT YEAR, more of the same but BIGGER on the airsoft and some tactical gear suppliers please!

Keep an eye out for a few videos from Airsoft Odyssey maybe featuring Sterling Airsoft, and interview with the new UKAPU President and of course a video montage, you gotta have a montage! Check out the Airsoft Odyssey Facebook page for more pictures!


THANK YOU, to the British Shooting Show for hosting the British Airsoft Show see you 2014, I hope!


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This Review & pictures are copyright 2012 by Yossers Airsoft Odyssey© and may not be be copied or reproduced without permission. You may link to this page.

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