Pubs complain of losses caused by grouse shoot cancellations

Pubs in Cumbria and Northumberland have been hit hard by halted grouse shoots, reporting tens of thousands in lost income.

According to analysis by the Countryside Alliance, 70% of shoot days in the north of England had to be cancelled after a shortage of the game birds. This impacted rural pubs near the planned shoots massively, leaving many with empty bars and unoccupied rooms at short notice.

The Forest of Bowlands had a combined 24 days cancelled, causing a £16,500 loss to the nearby Inn at Whitehall alone.

The Elks Head in Northumberland also reported losses amounting to between £10,000-15,000, as the ten rooms in their pub were not booked out until early September, a month after the start of the season.

Tori Miller, manager of the pub, estimates it will be a couple of years before grouse levels are where they need to be for them to avoid these losses.

The Countryside Alliance points out in their analysis that it isn’t just a shortage in game tourists that are causing these losses. They say because people in the area are not being employed as beaters, loaders, pickers or flankers, many are not going to their local after a day’s work.

Critics of the game shooting say this negative effect on the industry, along with the local ecology, could be remedied by increased investment in simulated shooting using clay discs instead.

Nick Weston of the League Against Cruel Sports highlighted pubs as beneficiaries of this proposed change. He says “a small army of loaders, technicians, catering staff, garage owners, publicans and landowners” would stand to gain from this alternative form of the sport.

One Response to “Pubs complain of losses caused by grouse shoot cancellations”

  1. Dave Theyers says:

    As an avid shooter and living down in the colonies at the bottom of the world (NZ), it was my belief that there were people whose job it was to breed and provide birds for this purpose. I may be wrong but that is what is written in the shooting magazines I I receive from the UK. You have to feel for those who work in the service industry, from the Hotel/motel owners right dow to the person who washes the dishes, drivers etc. etc. etc.. These people are providing employment for an unknown number of towns, villages and people who are trying to look after their families. The trendy lefty do gooders have a point, although they don’t seem to know what being in business, looking after the community is all about – IMHO

    Having said that, I am also an avid Trap Shooter and I am looking for a good recipe to prepare and cook a Clay Target, should I marinade them in a nice Merlot and cook them with mushrooms in a creamy sauce or do they do better in a slow cooker? Asking for a friend.

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