BASC Wales is calling on candidates in the upcoming Senedd elections to recognise the value of shooting to Wales with the launch of a new manifesto.
The Manifesto for Sustainable Shooting Sports, launched by BASC today (6th April), urges all Members of the Senedd to acknowledge the role shooting plays in Wales’ environment and rural economy and the physical and mental wellbeing benefits.
Steve Griffiths, BASC Wales director, said: “Shooting is an integral part of Wales’ cultural, economic and environmental fabric. Shooting activities in Wales contribute £75 million to the UK economy each year, supporting the equivalent of 2,400 full-time jobs. These contributions are critical – without them, many fragile rural communities would struggle to survive.
“In addition, the management practices associated with shooting play a pivotal role in protecting ecosystems and helping wildlife to thrive. Across Wales, shooting contributes to an annual spend of £7.4 million each year on conservation, which is the equivalent of 490 full-time jobs or 120,000 conservation work days.
“Our ask is simply to work with stakeholders on developing policies to manage the countryside.”
Mr Griffiths added: “In this manifesto ahead of the 2021 Senedd Elections, we highlight our policy recommendations for shooting sports, which we believe should be adopted and endorsed by Wales’ political parties.
“We make these recommendations in good faith and with an open invitation to discuss them with elected representatives, parliamentary candidates, policy-makers and stakeholders.
“The Welsh countryside is a complex place with a diversity of interests, and traditional land uses are facing unrelenting calls to justify their own existence. We want this to change. We are confident that our policy proposals show why shooting is compatible with an increasingly diverse countryside.”
Four key policy proposals are set out in the manifesto:
- Sustainable sporting shooting for Wales – health and wellbeing
- Protecting sustainable sporting shooting and its role in Wales’ rural economy
- Sustainable moorland/peatland management
- Species conservation management
The manifesto also outlines how shooting contributes towards the seven wellbeing goals within the Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015. To read the manifesto, visit https://basc.org.uk/download/294496/ for the English version or visit https://basc.org.uk/download/294500/ for the Welsh version.