There are Ministry of Defence-owned rifle ranges and a large training area (Barry Buddon Training Area) on the nearby Dunes, adjacent to Carnoustie Golf Links. The history of its present function dates back to the mid-19th century when the area was used for at least 30 years by the Forfarshire Rifle Volunteers, the Fife and Forfar Yeomanry the Panmure Battery of the Forfarshire Artillery Brigade, and a Royal Naval Reserve Battery. In 1897 the land was sold by Lord Panmure to the War Office for use as a military training area, for which it has been used ever since.
Barry Buddon covers 2,300 acres (930 hectares), of which 600 acres (240 hectares) is Foreshore, with at least an equal amount of sea danger area, due to the position of the ranges. The camp itself was redeveloped in the late 1990's, with accommodation for 507. It is one of the best equipped camps in Scotland, and as a result is commonly referred to by Service-personnel as Barry Butlins. Typically, with all camps and facilities in use, about 30,000 personnel pass through annually from the British Army and the other arms of the British Armed Forces, such as 45 Commando based in Arbroath, as well as youth cadets and some civilian organisations. With 20 different ranges, it forms the largest rifle range complex in Scotland, although not all can be used simultaneously. The ranges were used in the 1986 Commonwealth Games and are planned to be used in the 2014 Commonwealth Games. The camp is primarily an infantry training area, and small arms, light and medium mortars, and some anti-tank weapons are fired. Due to the legacy of unexploded ordnance from years of military use, the public are restricted to the metalled roads and are free to walk along the beaches, when the red signal flags are down and red lights extinguished.
Most of the training area is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and an EU Special Area of Conservation (SAC), as well as a Special Protection Area (SPA) for birds under the European Birds Directive.