DORCHESTER Rifle and Pistol Club made the trip across the English Channel for the annual clash with Bayeux Tir Club.

The 29th meeting between the two twin town clubs took on extra significance this year with the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings.

Before the first competition got underway there was a visit to the famous Bayeux Tapestry and newly-opened Museum of Art and Culture for Dorchester’s members.

When shooting did begin it was the hosts that got off to a winning start in the 10m air pistol event (30 shots for each of the five-person teams).

The traditionally strong Bayeux team took the top three places and won by 1,313 points to 1,240.

Jean Jacques Durand top scored with 280 and Sean Thomas (258) just edged Gill Carter (257) for Dorchester.

The Black Powder pistol discipline, using replica duelling pistols, involves counting the best 10 shots of 13 fired at 25m to take account of the complexities of obtaining consistent muzzle loading and firing with these arms.

Fabrice Goulet (94) led Bayeux to a clear win (432-389) with Dorch-ester’s Wendy Thomas (87) just counting out JJ Durand for second.

Following a typically generous French lunch in the Bay-eux clubhouse, the two-stage .22 target rifle competition took place in warm but overcast conditions.

Twenty shots at 50m saw Dor-chester take a clear lead (942-899) with club chairman Richard Bur-den and Ian Davison heading the field on 193 each.

The 100m stage was shot on targets larger than the usual British ones, and Bayeux got much closer before losing 957-942.

Burden (197) just beat Davison (196) to be top scorer with 390 as Dorchester retained the trophy (1,899-1,841).

The final event – the Police Pistol on advancing targets – uses cartridge revolvers not permitted in Britain so the Dorchester shooters were unable to practice in advance.

Bayeux took the top placings (Marco Dal Pont 199, Tony Letourneur 196, Francoise Huart 193), while Mark Chegwidden headed the Dorchester team with a creditable 184 – Bayeux took the overall victory 938-871.

The celebration dinner was held in Le Manoir d’Hastings, a short distance from Pegasus Bridge, the first location to be liberated by airborne troops from Tarr- ant Hinton airfield in Dorset in the early hours of June 6, 1944.

Dorchester presented Bayeux with framed pictures of the actual Allied naval operations plan of the Normandy beaches and British troops going ashore.