- From Merseyside
- Proposed by John Thornley, seconded by Sally-Anne Cockerill
- Retired estates manager
- BASC member for over 30 years
I am a retired estates manager and was responsible for more than 40,000 acres of land in central Lancashire. Prior to this, I was a professional gamekeeper for 30 years. I have considerable budget, HR, legal, health and safety and other management experience. I possess sound negotiating, contract management and meeting skills. I was responsible for a large number of farming, forestry, shooting and property interests; as well as the leader of a team of 18 people, including land agents, forester, rangers, biodiversity officer and others.
I am a trustee of the Gamekeepers’ Welfare Trust. I am also the current chairman of BASC’s gamekeeping and game shooting advisory committee and vice chairman of the uplands working group. I participated in the drafting of the various codes of good shooting practice. I am a previous Council member of BASC. As an established field-sports writer, photographer and journalist, I contributed over 400 illustrated articles for the shooting press. I was author of the Shooting Times Keeper’s World column for approximately 15 years. I was also involved in the making of several shooting-related documentaries and televised debates on behalf of BASC. In 1995, I was presented with an award for services rendered to BASC by His Grace the Duke of Westminster, at the BASC annual general meeting.
I have a lifetime’s knowledge of the shooting and land management industries, which I believe would be helpful in guiding the decision making process at BASC. My experience of working in partnership with the statutory and non-statutory agencies has enabled me to identify areas likely to cause conflict with shooting sports. I have knowledge and contacts to help me suggest solutions to these conflicts before they escalate into major issues for BASC members.
I was co-author of United Utilities’ firearms guidance documents and wildlife control policies, and have a wide knowledge of integrating shooting interests within the corporate and institutional landowning sector. I am a former member of the CLA Institutional Landowning Group. I have represented both United Utilities and BASC as a member of the Partnership against Wildlife Crime. My land management team received many awards, including Business in the Community (environmental section), Green Apple Environmental Awards (Gold) and Natural England’s SSSI site management award 2000.
I was the Facilitator of the Arnfield Moor Demonstration Project, a five-year project sponsored by United Utilities. This project, managed jointly by BASC and the Heather Trust, sought to reconcile the sometimes conflicting issues surrounding the management of moorland used for water gathering, public access, habitat management, shooting and birds of prey in the Peak District National Park. I would encourage BASC to work more closely with other organisations such as the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust, NGO, RSPB and Natural England, in forming a more effective alliance to deal with the issue of bird of prey persecution in the UK.