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Shooting & conservation

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 creating proven conservation benefits and preserving important habitats. 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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The popularity of shooting continues to grow

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

A recent parlimentary written question tabled by Jim Shannon MP has revealed that shooting's popularity is continually growing. The question tabled was 'how many shotguns and firearms permit holders there were in each of the last five years?' The answer was provided in the form of a table (below), submitted by the Minister in charge of licensing Mike Penning. 

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A new alliance for the future of lead shot

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Countryside Alliance Executive Chairman Barney White-Spunner writes: I am happy to be able to update you on where we are with the lead issue following my resignation from the Lead Ammunition Group a few weeks ago. I promised that we were in no way moving away from the issue and can now explain what I mean by that. Two Lead Ammunition Group (LAG) reports have now been presented to Defra.

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Land Reform Bill publication in the Scottish Parliament

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

After a two-year long debate the Scottish Government has published proposals aimed at widening the pattern and tenure of land ownership in Scotland. The Bill was introduced by Aileen McLeod, Scotland's Land Reform Minister, as a significant step forward in ensuring Scotland’s land is used in the public interest and to the benefit of the people all. She further added: “At the heart of the proposals within the Bill lies the principle of responsibility that comes with all land ownership, and while there are many exemplary landowners in Scotland, the message is clear, it is no longer acceptable to own land in Scotland and not take the public responsibilities that come with that ownership seriously." 

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Customising your shotgun may help your shooting

Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Drew Boxall of gunmakers Boxall & Edmiston makes the case for a bespoke gun in an article which appears in our Summer magazine. This is the unabridged version of the article as advertised in the magazine: The benefits of a bespoke gun can be compared to that of a custom made suit. Many of us buy off the shelf suits and although at certain angles it looks ok, feels alright and "does the job", there are lots of times when it is less than ideal. This is emphasised tenfold if (like me) you are a funny shape/size and off the shelf solutions just don't do the trick.

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Resigning from the Lead Ammunition Group over ‘"abuses of process"

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

The Executive Chairman of the Countryside Alliance, Sir Barney White-Spunner, has resigned from the Lead Ammunition Group (LAG) in protest at “abuses of process and evidence that render the group’s work so flawed it can never reach any scientific conclusions” (read on for his letter in full). The LAG was set up under the Labour Government in 2010 at the behest of the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust and the RSPB, on the back of scientific evidence from America, to advise Defra on any risks to wildlife, human health and livestock from the use of lead ammunition, and how to mitigate them. It has not yet produced a report. Sir Barney White-Spunner, Executive Chairman of the Countryside Alliance has served on the LAG since 2013 and represents the shooting community on the group.

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Show your support for Nature and Shooting

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

The Countryside Alliance is calling on all those who love British wildlife and the countryside to respond to the European Commission’s proposal to review the Birds and Habitats Directive.

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Group/ syndicate membership of the Countryside Alliance

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Countryside Alliance Group Membership is available to any group/syndicate with seven or more members. All named members of the group are full members of the Countryside Alliance and, as such, are covered by our insurance policy as individuals both when they are shooting with the group/syndicate and anywhere else if on their own. The insurance covers £10m employers' liability and £10m public/products liability.

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Air gun licensing is "unnecessary" and will not cut gun crime

Tuesday, 24 March 2015

The Scottish Parliament’s intention to continue towards licensing air weapons, despite evidence that such a move will do little to reduce crime whilst increasing police costs, is disappointing, says the Scottish Countryside Alliance (SCA). Yesterday (23 March) the Scottish Parliament’s Local Government and Regeneration Committee published its report on the Air Weapons and Licensing (Scotland) Bill. It suggests that the estimated 500,000 air weapons held across Scotland should be licensed, despite a warning from the Association of Scottish Police Superintendents that licensing would be unwieldy and expensive.

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New approach to ACPO firearms campaign

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and the Countryside Alliance have agreed a joint letter to all firearms licence holders clarifying the recent ACPO firearms security campaign as a result of concerns raised by thousands of Countryside Alliance supporters and licence holders. The ACPO campaign was launched on 13 October announcing spot checks on licensees and urging the public to use a dedicated Crimestoppers line to report signs of “radicalism, extremism and vulnerability to terrorism” among gun owners. The Alliance was concerned that the move went beyond the scope of changes to Home Office guidance which had been agreed by shooting organisations and therefore encouraged our members and supporters to lobby their MPs for clarification. Following a meeting between the Alliance, the Home Office and ACPO in Downing Street on 24 October a new approach was agreed.

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New firearms guidance from the Home Office - our advice

Monday, 13 October 2014

Shotgun and firearm certificate holders have a legal responsibility to ensure that their guns are always kept securely, so as to prevent possession by unauthorised persons. The Countryside Alliance fully supports this responsibility, one which is taken very seriously by the overwhelming majority of shooters. From 15th October the police will be checking that guns are being securely stored, by way of unannounced visits to certificate holders. New Guidance from the Home Office has been published as follows:

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