Traditional country pursuits reimagined for the modern world
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The first ever GWCT Welsh Game Fair will take place at the Vaynol Estate in Gwynedd this September, and it’s shaping up to be an incredible celebration of Welsh countryside and will shine a much-needed spotlight on the issues facing fieldsports in the area. The stunning setting of the Vaynol Estate, tucked between the foot of Snowdon and the north Welsh coastline, coupled with an exciting lineup of activities, displays, competitions mean this inaugural game fair for Wales is set to be an unmissable event and act as an important fundraiser for the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust, a charity that conducts vital research into Wales’ most vulnerable species such as woodcock and sea trout.
The GWCT Welsh Game Fair is set to welcome celebrity chef, author and Welsh native Bryn Williams. Bryn has created a bespoke menu for guests the VIP enclosure and White Park Restaurant presented by Clogau Jewellery and will be taking part in live, open-air cooking demonstrations throughout the weekend. Bryn is regarded as one of Wales’ best chefs, has hosted several successful cooking series with Welsh-language television channel S4C and is a passionate advocate for sustainable, field-to-fork fare, all of which makes him the perfect partner for the Welsh Game Fair. Bryn’s menu is set to include Welsh game and local produce, ensuring visitors are treated to a truly local, sustainable and downright delicious meal.
Located just in front of the striking Faenol Hall is a beautiful lake which is set to be the beating heart of the Fishing Village at the GWCT Welsh Game Fair. Keen anglers and those on the hunt for more information about fishing can enjoy casting displays and lessons, as well as watch some of the best anglers in the UK compete to be crowned best of all. All different strands of fishing will be represented by experts and enthusiasts, with a large shopping area giving visitors the chance to stock up on tackle and equipment for their next trip. There will also be the opportunity to enjoy fly fishing lessons from legendary Welsh angler Hywel Morgan and watch the fine hand skill of fly-tying person.
Hertfordshire-based premier clay pigeon shooting ground E.J. Churchill will be running the clay line at the inaugural GWCT Welsh Game Fair, which will feature an exciting blend of have-a-go stands, sporting challenges, flurries and competitions, all set in an unrivaled location with Snowdon towering in the background. With everything from introductions to clay shooting for total newcomers to the sport to prestigious competitions to tempt experienced competitors, the E.J. Churchill Clay Line is set to be an unmissable attraction.
The Main Arena is the focal point for thrilling displays and nail-biting competitions at every game fair, and the inaugural Welsh event is no different. Visitors can expect the Clwyd Axemen, fly fishing demos, terrier racing, a dog and duck show, wildfowling demos, hound parades, and demonstrations of one of the oldest fieldsports in existence, falconry. There will also be a knockout flyball competition with dogs demonstrating amazing training skill and speed as they race to collect a tennis ball over a course of hurdles.
The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust stand is a must visit for visitors keen to learn more about the charity’s work. The GWCT stand will also be hosting an array of captivating wildlife art and sporting books thanks to the involvement of the Redspot artists and Coch-y-Bonddu Books.
The Redspot consortium are widely regarded as one of the most innovative artistic groups in their field, producing work of the very highest standard in a diverse range of media - delicate watercolours, bold oils, detailed scraperboard and beaten metal sculptures. Coch-y-Bonddu Books are leading international dealers in new and out-of-print books on angling, game shooting, sporting dogs and falconry.
The gundog area is set to be a very popular attraction at the GWCT Welsh Game Fair, showcasing the amazing bond between these highly trained dogs and their handlers, As well as working dog displays and gundog experts on hand to answer questions, there is set to be a range of competitions taking place throughout the weekend. These aim to replicate the conditions in the field and see gundogs tested on their hunting, marking and retrieving abilities as well as their steadiness to shot.
On Friday 9 September there will be an open retriever test with a top prize of £100 up for grabs, and on the Saturday and Sunday the exciting Four Nations International returns for a third round, after rounds one and two were contested at the GWCT Scottish Game Fair and The Game Fair respectively. The Four Nations International sees spaniel and retriever teams from Scotland, England, Ireland and Wales compete head-to-head, with prizes on offer for top retriever, top spaniel and top dog as well as for the winning team. With England triumphing in round one and Ireland taking the top spot in round two, who will win round three in Wales?
Falconry is one of the oldest and the longest surviving of all the fieldsports, and it is simply spellbinding to watch. The GWCT Welsh Game Fair will host live demonstrations from some of these majestic birds, as well as offering visitors the chance to get up close to birds of prey and learn more about their individual characteristics, hunting style and prey. ADIHEX (the Abu Dhabi International Hunting & Equestrian Exhibition) is the proud sponsor of the falconry display at the GWCT Welsh Game Fair.
The rugged INEOS Grenadier is causing ripples of excitement in the rural community as a truly capable and no-nonsense vehicle and thanks to a new sponsorship agreement between INEOS Grenadier and the GWCT Welsh Game Fair, both the two-seat utility wagon and a five-seat station wagon variant will be on show for visitors to take a closer look at. With the Grenadier being hailed as the official car of the countryside, it is only fitting that these cars will be front and centre at this highly anticipated celebration of the Welsh countryside, heritage and fieldsports.
The GWCT Welsh Game Fair will give visitors the chance to have a go at a range of sports including archery and paintballing, attractions which are particularly popular with children and young people. This year there will also be the chance to learn how flyball dogs are trained and have a go at sending them down a jumping lane to catch the tennis ball as quickly as possible. Car and machinery enthusiasts both young and old will delight in the Diggerland and Mini Land Rover Experiences, both of which are set to be a very popular attraction.
An amazing array of craftspeople, food and drinks producers and brands are set to exhibit at the GWCT Welsh Game Fair, giving visitors the chance to snap new clothing, gifts, homewares and Welsh artisan food and drink. Well-known brands already confirmed include Clogau Jewellery, The Great British Cheese Company, Mackenzie & George, Capital Cashmere and Butternut Box, with many more on the way.
1. The inaugural GWCT Welsh Game Fair will take place from 9-11 September 2022 at Vaynol Estate, Bangor, Gwynedd, LL57 4BL.
2. The GWCT Welsh Game Fair is organised by Stable Events Ltd, which also manages the production of The Game Fair and The Scottish Game Fair.
3. More information at www.welshgamefair.org
Tickets for 2022
Single day advance
• Adult: £15
• Child (under 8yrs): Free
• Child (8-16): £6
• Family ticket: £38
Three-day tickets advance
• Adult three day: £35
• Child three day: £15
• Family three day: £105
Traditional country persuits reimagined for the modern world
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