Campaign for Shooting 2020-2021: a year in retrospect, and a year ahead
The Countryside Alliance has a pivotal role in bringing together the different shooting organisations, ensuring a coordinated approach when lobbying government. The Campaign for Shooting is at the forefront of promoting and protecting shooting in Parliament, in the media, and on the ground. Our objectives are clear: to secure and enhance the long-term sustainability of shooting and its associated land management practices, and to manage and reduce political risk at the local, national, and devolved levels.
Our document ‘Campaign for Shooting 2020-2021: a year in retrospect, and a year ahead ‘, provides a summary of the key strategic issues with which we have been dealing over the last 12 months, as well as those with which we know we will be engaged in over the coming year:
- COVID-19 has invariably caused considerable uncertainty for shooting. From the outset of the pandemic, we have provided advice to shoots, and have lobbied Government to enable shooting to resume as soon as possible, given the crucial role that it plays in the environmental, economic and social well-being of the countryside.
- The current situation surrounding wildlife licensing, especially with regards Individual Licences, is untenable, and having disastrous consequences for wildlife. We will therefore continue to lobby Defra to take back control from Natural England.
- Along with other leading shooting organisations, we have committed to the phasing out of lead shot and single use plastics in cartridges used for live quarry shooting within five years. This has been a key tool in persuading the Government that adopting punitive European legislation ahead of our exit from the EU is both unnecessary and impractical.
- We are an interested party in Wild Justice’s latest Judicial Review challenging the legality of releasing gamebirds on or near to European Protected Sites.
- The Alliance’s ‘Underkeeper Apprenticeship’ has now been approved by Government. If we had not taken action four years ago, the apprenticeship for gamekeepers would have ceased to exist this year.
- Along with others, we have issued a joint statement on zero-tolerance of raptor persecution, and we are working in partnership to develop a number of initiatives to eradicate all illegal persecution.
- Our proposal for a new study into the true value of shooting that accurately measures not just the environmental and economic benefits, but also those associated with social well-being and public goods, has been agreed. We will be working alonside other shooting organisations to take this work forward.
In order to challenge effectively the many threats that face us, we must have the necessary resources, and I am therefore extremely grateful to all those that support the Campiagn for Shooting. Without this support we could not be as succesful as we are.
There are a number of different ways in which you can support the Campaign for Shooting, the details of which are in ‘Campaign for Shooting 2020 – 2021: a year in retrospect, and a year ahead’, which can be read here.