Survey highlights need for gamekeeping support

The work undertaken by gamekeepers across the UK can be described as nothing less than indispensable to our countryside. However, a recent Gamekeepers Welfare Trust survey has raised concerns over working conditions and stress levels.

With the hard work of gamekeepers playing such a significant role in conservation, how can we better understand and support this industry during their hour of need?

The role of the GWT

While gamekeepers are busy looking after the countryside, the Gamekeepers Welfare Trust (GWT) are working hard to look after them. More specifically supporting individuals that require assistance.

Whether it is with mental health, anxiety, prospects or just a friendly voice on the other side of a phone. BASC is proud to work alongside a charity that is so dedicated to supporting gamekeepers.

Gamekeepers Welfare Trust survey results

A recent GWT survey was undertaken to better understand how they could be organising and prioritising their superb set of support packages. The results were startling…

  • Over three quarters of the respondents said they were working over 50 hours a week. With a total of 90 per cent working over the statutory limit of 38 hours. Long hours, often working alone and outside, is a topic of conversation that the GWT deal with on a regular basis.
  • While the average holiday entitlement for UK workers sits at around 25 days/annum, over half of respondents stated taking less than 15 days holiday annually. In addition, a quarter have not had a holiday or even short break in over a year.
  • For those in the profession it will be unsurprising that retirement is a top topic of interest, hence it being high up on the GWT’s workload. 54 per cent of respondents were keen to explore planning for retirement and a third planning for housing in retirement. These decisions offer both financial and emotional challenges that the GWT specialise in.

While we can all appreciate the vital work that gamekeepers undertake and the benefits they bring to the sport we love, the results from this GWT survey are a stark reminder of why organisations like the GWT are required. Working to support gamekeepers and their wider network of family and friends is essential to upholding this precious commodity.

How will the GWT use the results?

Results from the GWT survey will help shape their workload over the coming year to enable maximum benefit for those on the ground.

For those of you who know gamekeepers, the results of the survey may not be all too surprising. Gamekeepers’ hard work and dedication to their jobs is incredible. The findings extol what the charity is up against and how their work should not go unrecognised by the shooting community nor the public.  

If you are a gamekeeper that have yet to explore the GWT’s wonderful resources, please make sure you do.

For all others who appreciate the long hours they put into our countryside please consider supporting the GWT and their endeavours throughout the Year of the Gamekeeper.