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Shooting is worth £2 billion annually to the rural economy and supports 74,000 jobs. Over 600,000 people shoot and over 2 million hectares are actively managed for shooting in the UK. Yet shooting faces regular threats whether through restrictions on the guns we use, the ammunition we fire, the birds we rear, the land we use or our very presence in the countryside we love. The Countryside Alliance works to promote and protect the enormous contribution traditional shooting activity makes to the economy, communities and the environment.

Our public opinion research drives our campaign and ensures that we know which buttons to press to address public and political opinion. Our hugely successful Game-to-Eat campaign, which has increased sales of healthy, environmentally friendly game by more than 60 per cent, is a direct outcome of our research and hard work. Other Alliance projects, include getting more young people involved in shooting and National Shooting Week, which has introduced thousands of newcomers to the sport, all help to make shooting accessible and create new attitudes towards shooting.

The Countryside Alliance has the experience and the expertise to fight the big battles for the future of shooting in Westminster, Brussels and the devolved parliaments, as well as in the national and local media.

Campaigns - Shooting:

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Come to a shoot seminar in Herefordshire, 8th October

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

A Shoot Seminar will take place at Bishopswood House, Bishopswood, Ross-On-Wye, Herefordshire HR9 5QZ on Wednesday 8 October from 5.45pm - 8.30pm, including drinks and a hot supper. Click here to register. The seminar will cover current issues affecting shoots and participants in the field. Whilst we are amidst the shooting season the information gained from this event will help ensure there are as few chinks in the armour as possible. We are covering a number of topical issues which can be implemented for the remainder of this season and used in the planning, costing and running of next season too. The seminar is being run by Clarke Willmott in association with Smiths Gore, Smith & Williamson and the Countryside Alliance. Read on for a schedule. 

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Tim Bonner writes for our magazine on the hen harrier

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Countryside Alliance Director of Campaigns Tim Bonner has written a feature for our Autumn membership magazine in which he outlines the current situation relating to hen harriers. In "Aiding the skydancer's recovery" Tim explains "As long as the suspicion of raptor persecution hangs around grouse shooting it will beused by our opponents to negate all the positive contribution not just of grouse moor management, but of shooting as a whole. Grouse shooting comes second only to foxhunting as an ideal target for the animal rights movement with wealth, tweed and guns producing a useful stereotype to focus on." Read the piece in full here.

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67% of RSPB donors support translocation

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Hen harrier numbers arouse great passions. The disagreement over potential recovery programmes has been so strong that despite decades of debate they have not been introduced and we are left with very few hen harriers on English Uplands.
We wondered what, beyond noisy campaigners like ourselves, was the opinion of ordinary people? So last week the opinion poll company TNS asked the public for their views. What did they think of translocation of harrier chicks? Would they support it if they knew it was being done on grouse moors? And, the key question, could they accept gamekeepers being involved?
Given how vocal some activists are against translocation we were very surprised by the results. Among RSPB donors - a good proxy for those who are passionate about birds - an overwhelming 67% supported translocation even when they knew it was being done on grouse moors by gamekeepers.

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“Shoo don’t shoot” proposals given the bullet

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Countryside Alliance has welcomed Natural England’s decisions, announced today, that the “shoo, don’t shoot” proposals to restrict pigeon shooting, consulted on earlier this year, will not proceed. The open consultation on proposed changes to the General Licences ended in May this year. The suggestion in the consultation was that anyone using the licence should be able to show that they had tried non-lethal methods of control such as scaring before resorting to the gun. The Countryside Alliance was active against this proposal when it was first proposed in 2005 and was similarly active and vocal this time.

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Campaigning for Shooting - an update on our work

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

The Countryside Alliance's shooting campaign has produced a new downloadable document setting out our campaigning, lobbying and promotional priorities. Issues such as lead shot, management practices, potential restrictions and our work to promote game are all included, as is the fact that we have to fundraise to continue our work, so it would be appreciated if you could support us by buying your new season badge. You can download the document here or receive your hard copy version by emailing

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Britain’s birds of prey are a real success story

Friday, 8 August 2014

Populations of the majority of the UK’s birds of prey are now at their highest ever levels, the Countryside Alliance’s report “Birds of prey of the UK and their population trends” shows.
This boom is due to a number of factors, which include the prohibition of organochlorine pesticides such as DDT, the restriction of certain poisons, successful re-introduction schemes, a change in attitude amongst many landowners and the full legal protection of all species.

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M&S response on grouse sales is "revealing"

Monday, 4 August 2014

Marks and Spencer’s (M&S) response to the thousands of people who have emailed them about their decision not to stock grouse this season is revealing. M&S say: “unfortunately, we have not been able to secure sufficient numbers of responsibly sourced and third party accredited red grouse so have made the decision to remove the product from sale”. There is a fundamental problem with this statement. The reason M&S have not been able to secure “responsibly sourced” grouse is that they have not produced a Code of Practice containing standards which estates and suppliers can meet.

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Buy your 2014/15 shooting badge & get your sweepstake card

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

As the shooting seasons prepare to roll out, the Countryside Alliance's 2014/15 shooting badges, this year in duck egg blue, are now available. The badges come in a solid colour Season badge (£100) and smaller, camouflage Supporter badge (£15) and are a sure way of wearing your support for shooting. This is the 14th year we have unveiled a new colour shooting campaign badge in what has become an extremely collectable series. Buy yours here and read on to order your sweepstake cards.

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Shooting generates £2bn, boosts conservation and provides jobs

Monday, 7 July 2014

Shooting is worth £2 billion a year to the UK economy and provides significant conservation benefits according to the results of independent research released today (click here) by leading shooting and countryside organisations, including the Countryside Alliance.

The figures are outlined in a new report – The Value of Shooting – conducted by Cambridge-based Public and Corporate Economic Consultants (PACEC). It is the most comprehensive research into the economic, environmental and social contributions of shooting ever undertaken in the UK.

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Compliance with the law on lead shot

Saturday, 1 June 2013

British shooting and country land management organisations reiterate last year's campaign reminding individuals to comply with the law on the use of lead shot. In England, it has been illegal to use lead shot over all foreshore, specified Sites of Special Scientific Interest, and for the shooting of all wildfowl wherever they occur, since 1999; and in Wales since 2004. In Scotland and Northern Ireland it is illegal to use lead shot over wetlands.

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