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A Southern Sojourn

Author: Peter Ryan

If there’s a sporting secret to the Land of the Long White Cloud, it’s that the wildfowling is magnificent explains Peter Ryan.

Photograph / DARYL SNOWDON Why New Zealand? Red stags of course. And sight fishing with dry flies. Everybody knows that. It’s nice to have a reputation but there’s so much more going on. On the North Island the stalking for sika is exceptional, with some of the best free-range stags in the world taken each year. On the South Island tahr are among the most prized alpine trophies anywhere... But if there’s a secret to the Land of the Long White Cloud, it’s that the wildfowling is...

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The Underley Shoot

A day’s shooting in Cumbria’s Lune Valley with George Digweed, Will Ashby & Co.But what keeps this team of friends returning year on year?

With a line-up that includes George Digweed and Will Ashby, it’s little wonder that even during the final drive, Wild Garden, birds that often beat the Guns were being brought down. That’s according to Phil Pease who runs Underley Shoot in Cumbria’s Lune Valley. Phil has run the 4,500-acre estate for 11 years now, taking the reins from his father back in 2008. Phil has been involved in some form or other since he was 10 years old, which is also when he started shooting: “I was always...

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What about Woodland?

Author: Tim Furbank

With thorough planning and considered investment, creating woodland that benefits game, wildlife and the bottom line is quite achievable.

There has never been a better time to invest in woodland management. Thanks to biomass boilers and renewable energy tariffs, the wood ‘fibre’ price is at an all-time high, with prices of up to £45/t at roadside being obtained for lower grade conifer material. Hardwood firewood remains in demand with prices as high as £35/t for a standing sale (where the buyer has to fell and extract at their own cost), depending on the site and ease of extraction, and top quality oak is fetching up to...

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High Game

Author: Sam Carlisle

Stalking wild and intriguing capercaillie in the Swedish tundra.

Photograph: NORDGUIDE.SE Once upon a time the kingly courts of Europe separated game into two distinct orders: Hochwild and Niederwild. Hochwild, or high game, was the preserve of the nobility. Niederwild, or low game, were the animals that anyone could hunt. All hooved game, apart from roe deer, were set aside for the nobles. Eagles and capercaillie were the only birds to be included on the list of high game. Whilst times have changed, the capercaillie retains the status of an exclusive...

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Advice from an Old Hand

Author: David Clark LVO

Reflections on becoming a gamekeeper and advice for those who wish to be one.

It all seems such a long time ago... I had travelled from the north by train into London, crossed the city and caught another train bound for Arundel in West Sussex – I was on my way for my first interview as a keeper’s boy. I had seen the advert in the Gamekeeper and Countryside magazine; in those days there were four or five pages of job advertisements for keepers. I was 15 and so excited to be given the chance of an interview. The train rumbled along through ever-changing...

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Pheasant Shooting - A Short History

Author: David S. D. Jones

Fieldsports Journal looks back at the noble history of pheasant shooting.

Pheasant shooting has been taking place in Great Britain since the 16th century, albeit on a relatively small scale prior to the mid-19th century when the advent of the breech loading shotgun, which enabled sportsmen to kill a large amount of gamebirds within a relatively short period, paved the way for the development of the driven shoot. Prior to this time, pheasants were usually walked-up over dogs and shot in small numbers, with little artificial rearing taking place. Indeed, wild pheasants...

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Badminton Shoot

Author: Matt Kidd

Shooting in a winter wonderland at Badminton House.

Photographer / MATT KIDD What comes to your mind when asked to imagine a quintessentially British winter scene? A robin perched on a snow-topped postbox? Children sledging on a hillside? A city street awash with red, blue, green and gold lights? Or, as a reader of this magazine, do you imagine a team of Guns crunching their way across a snowy valley floor with slipped guns over shoulders, some carrying a brace of pheasants in one hand, a few dogs walking to heel, warm breath glowing in the...

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The Ultimate Quarry Species – Part 2

We seek nominations from serious sportsmen and women.

Desert Bighorn Sheep - Ovis Canadensis Nelsoni Author / STEVE HORNADY  For me, it’s always been about the mountains, the sheep and the goats. They exist where people don’t. They go where people don’t go – where they’re in their element and we’re not in ours. To pick just one species of sheep or goat is very difficult. I guess if I had to narrow it down, it would have to be the very first one I got which was a desert sheep in Arizona. Why was it special? First and...

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Connoisseurs of Light

Author: Al Young

Al Young describes his experience wildfowling in Lindisfarne, Northumberland.

Photographer / MATT KIDD It’s almost a week since leaving Lindisfarne in Northumberland. Even now when I close my eyes, we’re back on the sands at half-light. Turner, Varley, Girtin – some of Britain’s greatest artists have been captivated by Holy Island’s evocative light and it seems in everyone’s nature to be drawn to times and places of transition. Sunsets and sunrises. Beaches and waterfronts – places of change and ever-shifting horizons. So does this innate human...

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First and Foremost

Author: Simon Ward

Simon Ward explains how we should never take safety for granted when shooting and how to prep for this.

When handling a gun, in any scenario or environment, it is our responsibility and of utmost importance to be safe. Yes, we all want to better our shooting and take it to the next level, but we must never take safety in the field for granted or forget that, if handled incorrectly, a shotgun is potentially lethal. From checking that your gun is suitable for the task at hand right up until it has been cleaned and put back in the cabinet, ‘being safe’ is the number one priority. Get into the...

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An interview with Chris Horne

Fieldsports Journal speaks to Managing Director of GunsOnPegs Chris Horne.

How did you first get into shooting? My Dad and Grandad were in separate syndicates when I was growing up and it was my Grandad that let me have his peg for my first day when I was 13. My Dad had let me fire my first shot when I was 8, but it was with his 12 bore using a game load after a day, aiming at a large oak tree, which I’m sure I missed. It hurt me so much at that age that it put me off for a few years!   Tell us a little about GunsOnPegs – how did it begin and how has it...

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The Ultimate Quarry Species – Part 1

Author: Ted Innes Ker, Dr Kevin Robertson, Steffan Jones, Matt Harris, James Horne, Lady Katie Percy, Rachel Carrie and Franz-Albrecht Oettingen-Spielberg

We seek nominations from serious sportsmen and women.

Atlantic Salmon - Salmo Salar Author / TED INNES KER There are obviously times when Lady Luck plays a part in fishing, but generally speaking Atlantic salmon are incredibly difficult to catch! So many factors are at play on a day’s fishing, be it the weather conditions, colour/temperature of the water, the number of resident fish that hold other, fresher fish in the pools, type and size of fly, line weight... the list is fairly endless. It is the pursuit of these incredible fish that...

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The Young and the Seasoned

Author: Peter Glenser

Sharing a passion with the next generation.

Photographer / BYRON PACE For keepers struggling to bring on the next generation of grouse, 2018 has been an annus horribilis. A brutally long cold winter followed by a searingly dry summer cruelly conspired against the broods of the king of gamebirds. My opening day on the grouse was, luckily for me, one of the handful not be cancelled. Way up in Inverness-shire, Dorback still could put on a show of birds worth travelling to see. The day can accommodate a number of people if we are...

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Wing Shooting in Africa

Author: Will Pocklington

Seven days, three provinces, 12 species...An African bird shooting safari not to be forgotten.

PHOTOGRAPHER / Will Pocklington I’d always imagined my first sporting sortie on African soil to involve a rifle, not a shotgun. And yet here I was, the sharp, white spines of acacia whipping past the window of the Cruiser as our party made haste to intercept a flock of helmeted guineafowl, pockets stuffed with No. 5s. We were in classic bushveld country, north of Polokwane in the Limpopo. Wary and wily, the first quarry of our bird hunting safari – the likes of which none of us had...

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A Love of Englishmen

Author: Rodger McPhail, Jonathan Yule & Andrew Ellis

Three of today’s foremost sporting artists consider the allure of grey partridges, in the field and at the easel.

Rodger McPhail     Over the past 40 years I have painted hundreds of pictures of grey partridges. During this time they have disappeared from nearly all of their former haunts. Yet they are just as popular now as when they were a familiar and ubiquitous quarry. What is it about this bird that demands such lasting affection? Apart from providing wonderful sport and delicious meals, the partridge has many admirable qualities. It is modest, unshowy, parochial and discreet. It is...

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Striving for Shooting Excellence

Author: Simon Ward

Top game shooting instructor Simon Ward shares advice on how to take your shooting ability to the next level.

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” I’ve stumbled across this quote by Aristotle several times over the years, and it certainly rings true when considering ‘excellence’ in the shooting field. As with many other sports, those who are serious about their shooting strive for excellence – for themselves and not for the benefit of others. How, then, can one go from being an intermediate Shot to an exceptional one? We should first be quite...

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The magic of Beater's Day

Author: Fieldsports Journal

On shoots up and down the country, from the smallest of scratch-about affairs to the busiest of commercial operations, Beaters’ Day is one of the most eagerly anticipated fixtures on the game shooting calendar.

Through rain and shine, sleet and fog, brambles and maize, every season on every shoot a trusty team come together with dogs, flags, sticks and high spirits to help reap the fruits of the keepers’ hard work. They do it for the craic, the company, the fresh air, the stretch of their legs. And they do it for Beaters’ Day. It’s a special day’s sport laced with familiarity. Men, ladies, boys and girls stand with a gun in their hands who have waited for the opportunity since the start of...

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The Perfect Shoot

Author: Tim Furbank

Tim Furbank identifies the factors that make for a dream day's shooting.

Photographer / CHRIS KNIGHTS For the last eight years I have been very privileged to sit on the judging panel for the Purdey Awards and I have visited some quite remarkable shoots, from small wildfowling syndicates to renowned high bird shoots, and from fledgling grey partridge projects to gloriously restored grouse moors. I am often asked, ‘given the choice of any, where would you choose to shoot?’ and, of course, it’s impossible to answer! I have only shot grouse a few times but...

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An interview with David Clark LVO

The former headkeeper of 17 years on Her Majesty the Queen’s Sandringham Estate, Honorary President of the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation and Lieutenant of the Victorian Order.

Photographer / PAUL QUAGLIANA Let’s start at the beginning. When did you first become interested in the countryside and country sports? It seems like a long time ago now. As a young boy I’d always be outside. I used to go ferreting with my dad and at the weekend I’d potter about with the keeper on the local estate. It was a great upbringing. I grew up in a place called Crosby, between Liverpool and Southport. It’s quite a big town now, but when I was young it backed onto villages...

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Five of Norfolk's finest shoots

Author: Matt Kidd

A shoot day akin to a tasting menu... One lucky team enjoys a day's sport on a quintet of Norfolk’s finest driven shoots.

Norfolk has long had a reputation as one of the foremost counties for driven partridge shooting in the UK – the flat arable land, and thick, high hedgerows so well suited to the sport in its traditional format. However, despite my family’s annual visit to watch the famous autumn bird migration, the chance to pull on the tweeds for a day’s shooting had evaded me until November last year. I had been invited to join a team of Guns on the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust’s (GWCT)...

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Spanish partridges at Butler del Prado

Author: Will Pocklington

One man’s vision became a team’s dream, and now sportsmen and women of the truest calibre are catching wind of a Spanish partridge shoot in the Serrania foothills determined to offer authentic sport produced off the back of a commendable philosophy.

“This lucky bugger’s going to Spain in a few week’s time, partridge shooting!” A heavy hand patted my back. It was the end of season meal at my local shoot, and I was much the envy of those with whom I shared a table. “Balmy 20 degrees”, “Rioja in the sun”, “It’s alright for some!” they teased. I’d be popping my Spanish sporting cherry. And to be honest, I too first envisaged sun-baked sandy soils, deep valleys, shirt sleeve order, cured meats and cold beer in...

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T. R. White & Co. Gunmakers

Author: Matt Kidd

A visit to the family-run T. R. White & Co. gunmakers in Staffordshire who have big plans for the future.

Whatever the industry, whatever your background, venturing away from a secure income as an employee to set up your own business takes some serious courage. Of course, only time will tell if the risk is worth the reward, but as a 30-year-old, married with two young children, most would let their dreams fall by the wayside. This scenario was not going to stop Staffordshire-based Tony White from starting up his own gunmaking firm in 1989, though. “Without doubt, the biggest challenge I faced...

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How to prepare for your first driven day's shooting

Author: George Padley

The world of driven shooting can be intimidating and confusing to the newcomer – a minefield of alien traditions, customs and etiquette. But with a bit of homework and prior preparation, your first day on the peg can be both enjoyable and rewarding.

Driven shooting is now accessible to people of all backgrounds and from all walks of life. Thanks largely to the commercialisation of the sport, pretty much anyone can book a day's shooting, simply by clicking a ‘Book now' button. But there is a glitch in the system – there is no requirement for you to prove that you are a proficient Shot, have an understanding of the ways of the countryside, the etiquette and the ethics that go hand in glove with shooting and, most importantly,...

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Entry level guns

Author: Vic Harker

After considering the many variables parents must think about when acquiring the right gun for a young Shot, Vic Harker identifies two suitable and affordable off-the-rack options.

For most shooting parents, finding suitable guns for young people has always represented something of a problem. With sufficient funds it is a little easier, but for the majority, something safe and suitable can be hard to identify. Choice in part is dependent upon age and physical development; in my view, any kind of gun is best kept out of the hands of children under the age of 12 – even after that the strictest supervision should be maintained. As to the type of gun best suited to...

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Side-by-side or over-under shotgun

Author: Simon Ward

Top game shooting instructor Simon Ward shares some tips on how to make the most of both shotgun configurations.

Although I have now shot with a Perazzi over-under for more than 15 years, I shot both clays and game for 10 years with a Holland & Holland Royal side-by-side. There is no doubt that both configurations deserve their place in the game shooting field, but there is no getting away from the fact that they are fundamentally different in design. Therefore, in order to get the most out of them respectively, one’s technique must be adjusted accordingly. If we compare a typical 28" side-by-side...

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Sixteen bore shotguns

Author: Chris Batha

A closer look at why there’s a resurgence in popularity of the 16 bore shotgun in both the UK and the USA.

From the early to mid 20th century, in the USA, Europe, and the UK, the 16 bore was a popular choice among game Shots. In the USA it was widely considered to be ‘the gentleman’s gun’ and in the 1950s accounted for almost a quarter of all shotgun sales. Why then did it fall so far from favour in the years that followed? Initially the demise of the 16 bore was probably due to its close proximity to the 12 and 20, both of which offered the game Shots a greater variety of cartridge and...

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Watson Bros. Gunmakers

Author: Marcus Janssen

Marcus Janssen visits Watson Bros., the last independently-owned and run London gunmaking firm, where a pioneering spirit lives on.

I wonder how many people, when asked to name as many London gunmakers as they can, would mention Watson Bros.? Despite being founded almost 150 years ago and boasting an excellent reputation for best sidelock shotguns (both over-unders and side-by-sides), I would wager at least a tenner that Alexander Armstrong and Richard Osman would give them an impressively low score on Pointless. I wonder why that is? Well, it might have something to do with the fact that everything they produce is...

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Twenty top tips for pheasant shooting

Author: Simon Ward

Master driven pheasants with these 20 top tips from Simon Ward.

1. Gun, choke and load Either a side-by-side or over-under in 12, 16 or 20 bore is preferable, although I have seen some experienced Shots put a 28 bore to very good use. I would recommend 28–32" barrels choked ½ to ¾, depending on the type of shooting you will be doing and your build. In terms of cartridges, for average to high driven pheasants (but not extreme), I would recommend the following loads of either no. 5s or 4s: 28 bore: 25-28g 20 bore: 25-30g 16 bore: 28-30g 12 bore:...

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Copper-coated shot demystified

Is the recent surge in the popularity of copper-coated lead shot a result of clever marketing, or are these cartridges as good as some claim? Matt Kidd asks the opinion of various manufacturers and respected game Shots.

Whether shooting pigeons, grouse, pheasants or partridges, game Shots often have a preferred cartridge brand and load – some are even die-hard loyalists who will buy them in huge quantities. As with many other pieces of kit and fieldsports paraphernalia, fads and fashions come and go. But is the latest trend of using copper-coated lead shot here to stay? The technology has been around for many years now; the first examples of coated shot (with copper, nickel and even gold) date back to the...

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The ten most common game shooting faults

As a professional game shooting instructor and vastly experienced game Shot, Simon Ward has seen every conceivable game shooting fault in the book. But over the years, he has identified 10 that seem to crop up more often than others.

1. Bird selection The fault: Something I see a lot, particularly with less experienced Guns, is poor bird selection – i.e. picking the first bird that comes into sight and then sticking with it, so that by the time it is in-range, it is often over a neighbouring peg or out of range. As a consequence, when you take the shot, your feet are in the wrong place and you end up in an unnatural, contorted position, resulting in a miss, more often than not behind or off-line. The fix: The key is...

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Shot strings explained

Author: Simon Ward

There's more to a pattern of shotgun pellets than you might think.

It is a fair assumption that most people who shoot rarely consider shot string. Yes, they may think of the pattern and the speed at which it travels. But the pattern to most mind's eyes is a plate-shaped circle, with hopefully not too many holes in it. This is precisely what you see when you test a gun on a pattern plate. You get a pretty good idea of how your gun and cartridge combination are performing. But not entirely. For as the pellets fly through the air, they not only do so in...

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Gun fitting with Simon Ward

Simon Ward on the simple route to better shooting – getting your gun fitted. Here he explains the benefits of having a gun that fits you properly and what to look out for.

The Greats always knew it, but increasingly more and more shooters are discovering that gunfit holds an important key to good shooting. That said, having a gun professionally fitted will only be of real benefit if you have learnt to consistently mount your gun smoothly and accurately onto a moving object. Physiologically, we are all different, so, in an ideal world, we would all shoot with bespoke gunstocks, built to fit our own unique shape and dimensions. However, this option isn't...

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Browning B15 Beauchamp

Marcus Janssen is very impressed with the Browning B15 Beauchamp over-under.

There can’t be many gunmaking companies with a more confusing history than Browning. They’re an iconic American brand, and yet almost all of their guns are manufactured in Europe and Japan. In order to understand why this is, one must go back to the beginning. The company was founded in 1878 to market the sporting (non-military) designs of John Moses Browning, an American gunmaking genius and one of the world’s most prolific firearms inventors (he is credited with 128 US patents). But...

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Five wildfowling tips

Father and son Jeremy and Guy Westmoreland share their top tips for improving success at wild fowling. Plus, they identify exactly what kit you need to take along with you.

1. SAFETY COMES FIRST As with all forms of shooting, safety should be your number one priority. If you are an inexperienced wildfowler, or do not know the marsh you are heading to like the back of your hand, you must go with someone who does. Remember, you will be out there in a tidal zone, an inherently dangerous place, in the dark. You can easily find yourself in the wrong place on an incoming tide and, before you know it, you are stranded with no way of getting back to dry land. And each...

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External factors that can effect shooting performance

Author: Simon Ward

Gunfit, gunmount, footwork, timing and follow through are all paramount to good shooting, but if due attention is not paid to the other variables on a shoot day, you might find yourself walking back to the gunbus feeling nonplussed.

Just as with any sport, preparation is key to consistently good performance when game shooting. In this issue, however, rather than focus on the minutiae of technique, we shall consider those variables which really should be quite obvious but so often catch game Shots out. Gunfit, gunmount, footwork, timing and follow through are all paramount to good shooting, but disregard the variables below, and you’ll be kicking yourself. Wind speed and direction Being aware of the wind speed...

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Which gun for high pheasants?

Author: Chris Batha

When it comes to tackling extreme range pheasants, bigger does not always mean better

In my years as a sporting agent, shooting instructor, gunmaker and gun fitter, I have often been amazed, both in the field and at shooting grounds, at a client's choice of gun when, often, their choice is actually handicapping their efforts to achieve consistent, straight shooting. This mismatching of gun to bird has been exacerbated by the current fashion for uber-high pheasant shoots where birds in excess of 60 yards are considered fair game. When looking for a suitable shotgun to...

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How to shoot clays to improve your game shooting

Top game shooting instructor Simon Ward offers his advice for making the most of your visits to the shooting ground.

How you approach your trips to your local clay ground will depend entirely on where you want to take your game shooting. There is nothing to stop you from having fun while you are there, but the key is to have a clear idea of what you are trying to achieve, and a structured plan. And rather than thinking of it as practice, think of it as training; if you want to make the most of it, you need to take it seriously. Any shooting you do, whether it is at clays, pigeons or game, will ultimately...

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Twenty top tips for partridge shooting

Author: Simon Ward

Invaluable tips that could transform your partridge shooting success.

Over tall hedges and shelter belts 1: Guns and ammunition Either side-by-side or over-under, calibre 28, 20, 16 or 12-bore. Barrel length: 25”-30”. Choke: Open chokes between improved and half. Ammunition: Felt wads - 28 gauge, 21gram-28gram, number 6 shot; 20 gauge, 21gram-28gram number 6-7 shot; 12 gauge, 24gram-30gram, number 6-7 shot. 2: Keep the noise down Try to be quiet as you walk to your peg, i.e. shooting position in the line. Refrain from slamming car doors...

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Temple shoot

Author: Will Pocklington 

The Temple shoot in North Devon is a positive example of how a hard-working team with a sound awareness of the challenges which face shoot managers can create something exciting.

PHOTOGRAPHER  /  RICHARD FAULKS For those lucky enough to get their fix of game shooting by way of generous invitation or through involvement with a local muck-in-and-make-the-most-of-it syndicate, it’s quite easy to lose track of how much a let day’s driven game shooting costs. I’ve seen this first-hand with friends who fit nicely into the above bracket. They enjoy several seasons of shooting on one another’s farms, perhaps find themselves on the odd day through work, but when...

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Stowlangtoft shoot, Suffolk

Author: Will Pocklington

The Stowlangtoft shoot syndicate in Bury St. Edmunds has been in operation for over 75 years, so what's the secret to success?

Many will associate the year of 1936 with the death of King George V. It was also the year that the Spitfire took to the skies on its maiden voyage, suntan lotion became a ‘thing’ and the average price of a house in London was £519. Meanwhile, in the Suffolk village of Stowlangtoft, just a few miles north of Bury St Edmunds, the Catchpole family hosted their first ever syndicate shoot day. Driven shooting began on the then 10,000-acre Stowlangtoft Estate in the late 1800s. Indeed HRH...

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Shuckburgh Hall shoot

Author: Will Pocklington

Owned by the same family for over a thousand years, the Shuckburgh Hall shoot in Northamptonshire strikes a beguiling balance between treasuring the past and thinking about the future.

Tradition is an inherent part of game shooting, and yet, stop for a minute and consider what has changed over the past few hundred years, and our oft-quoted ‘stuffy and archaic’ sport appears a little more pioneering. Flick back through David S. D. Jones’ fascinating pieces in previous issues of Fieldsports and you will find many examples of tools and practices now relegated to the past: man traps and spring guns for tackling poachers; the use of tethered broody hens on rearing fields;...

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Rotherfield Park shoot

Author: Rupert Godfrey

A return to the Rotherfield Park shoot in Hampshire for a wonderful day's mixed shooting.

PHOTOGRAPHER  /  MATT KIDD The first time I shot at Sir James Scott’s Rotherfield Park was in 2010, the year Malcom Brockless took on the gamekeeping on a third of the 4,000-acre estate as part of a Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT) experiment to see whether grey partridges could be re-established. With 1,000 acres of woodland and quite heavy soil, the estate is more suited to wild pheasants than partridges. Add to that a grazing herd of cattle and silage-making on the...

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Graythwaite Hall

Author: Matt Kidd

The Graythwaite Shoot in the Lake District is back, and it has everything going for it.

There is something quite special about crunching your way across a gravel courtyard towards the entrance of a country manor house. As you take each step closer to the heavy main doors, you can’t help but think of the rich history behind them and wonder whose footsteps from bygone years you may be retracing. This is precisely how a day at the Graythwaite Shoot in the Lake District started for me back in November. The beautiful Graythwaite Hall was constructed in the 17th century by order of...

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Claughton Hall shoot

Author: David Egan

With pheasants, partridges, grouse, ducks, moorland, woodland, ponds and waterfalls – and exciting plans going forward – the Claughton Hall Shoot in Lancashire is about as diverse as it gets.

Dating back to Elizabethan times, Claughton Hall in Lancashire had originally adjoined Claughton Hall Farm. By the 1920s it was derelict and used as a farm store. Edmund Morse, managing director of Williamson’s Lino, bought it and remarkably had the Hall moved between 1931 and 1935, away from the noisy A683 and railway, to its present site. The move cost £26,000 (£1million in today’s money). Claughton Hall originally started with 60 acres, but over the past 40 years it has grown to...

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Burghley Estate shoot

Author: Matt Kidd

For the Burghley Estate Syndicate in South Lincolnshire, a day's shooting is all about the camaraderie, banter and laughter.

Syndicate shooting began in the mid-Victorian period, when groups of newly-rich but landless businessmen started to rent the sporting rights on estates within easy reach of towns and cities. Initially, those involved worked hard to create small walked-up shoots, but often struggled to cooperate with resident gamekeepers. In Scotland, meanwhile, innovative Victorians gave wealthy professionals and businessmen the chance to form syndicates to rent or lease mixed shooting. This was popular....

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