The Scottish Countryside Alliance (SCA) has announced its new Director, Jake Swindells.
Jake joins the SCA having enjoyed a diverse career, both on the front line of rural policing and as a Gamekeeper.
Jake's appointment comes at a crucial time for the fieldsports community, with the Scottish Government indicating that it intends to change current legislation on fox control.
Born in Dumfries, Jake was introduced to fieldsports whilst in school. From a young age, Jake enjoyed beating at shoots while helping with maintenance and feeding.
Having joined Cheshire Police in 2002 with secondments to the CID and Dog Section, Jake moved back home to Scotland to retrain as a Gamekeeper in 2010. Having worked as a single-handed Gamekeeper, Jake then transferred his skills to a new role as Country Officer for BASC Scotland in 2016.
Within the role Jake focused on firearm enquiries and ran training courses (such as DSC level 1 and Wild Boar course) while advising on key issues such as trapping and snaring, gamekeeping and wildlife crime.
Speaking in response to his appointment, Jake said: " I am delighted to be heading up the Scottish Countryside Alliance at what is a crucial time for many in rural communities across Scotland. I look forward to engaging with Members of the Scottish Parliament and Government to highlight the issues of importance to our growing membership. While I intend to stand up to those who pursue illogical and dangerous proposals that threaten the wellbeing of farmers and landowners, I will also be working flat out to promote our interests and the contribution that fieldsports bring to the Scottish economy, as well as the environment and conservation."
Tim Bonner Chief Executive of the Countryside Alliance (UK) said: " It is clear that the coming year will be a testing time for many rural people and it is critical that the SCA continues standing up for evidence based policy when the Scottish Government discuss matters relating to pest control. Jake brings a wealth of experience and we are confident that the SCA will go from strength to strength under his leadership."
Outside of work, Jake is a keen spear fisherman and rock climber. He enjoys training gun dogs and is currently training Myrtle, his 5 month old Cocker pup, to be a deer dog.
Jake is based full time in Scotland and can be contacted by email: [email protected]