Liberal Democrat MP David Heath visited a Somerset shoot to find out more about BASC’s Country Sports South West project and how it is increasing the economic benefit of shooting in the South West.
David Heath, Minister of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in DEFRA who represents the people of Somerton and Frome was given a full tour of the Kingweston Shoot near Somerton which dates back to 1887. The shoot extends to 2,000 acres and is a challenging pheasant shoot with the occasional partridge and woodcock.
David had the chance to see first-hand how rural businesses are working together, as well as the opportunity to meet the people behind the local businesses involved, including; Jonathan Tait-Harris, Shoot Captain, Kingweston Shoot, Ashley Maunder, MW Poultry as well as Robert Grecean, Managing Director of the Draco Pub Company which owns the local White Swan in Somerton along with its head chef Tom Blake (ex River Cottage head chef).
Local businessman and head chef Olly Jackson from the Langford Fivehead near Taunton provided the shoot guests with a taste of country sports, showcasing his delicious pheasant, rabbit and venison game canapés.
David Heath, MP for Somerton and Frome said: “I really enjoyed meeting everyone on my visit to the Kingweston shoot. It’s great to see such a thriving local business in action and hear about the economic benefit it brings to the area. The food I sampled was delicious and it was so local there couldn’t have been any food miles! I’d like to wish everyone I met all the best in their future endeavours.
Annette Cole, Senior Manager, Country Sports South West said: “It was an excellent opportunity to showcase how successful the project funding from the Rural Development Programme for England has been for south west businesses”