Record numbers of people are expected to take advantage of the final day of the pheasant and partridge seasons on 1 February, as the traditional finale to the shooting calendar falls on a Saturday this year.
The last day of the season is the beaters’ day on many shoots, when those people who have worked throughout the season take their turn with a gun.
An estimated 25,000* shoots will take place around the country, with as many as 500,000 people - 200,000 guns and another 300,000 family and friends - getting involved and enjoying a day outside, no matter what the weather throws at them.
Shooting plays a vital part in rural Britain, is worth more than £1.6 billion to the UK economy and supports 70,000 full-time jobs (see notes).
Countryside Alliance executive chairman, Barney White-Spunner said: “Having so many people going out shooting on the final day of the season is a true success story, showing that support for shooting is stronger than ever.
“Come rain or shine, around half a million people will be enjoying the last day of the season in traditional style.”
The Countryside Alliance is also delighted to report record sales of wild game in supermarkets this season.
In a recent newspaper article (see notes) it was reported that sales of rabbit are up 20 per cent in a year at Marks & Spencer and pheasant sales are up 30 per cent, while partridge sales have increased by 234 per cent.
And Waitrose said that its venison sales were up by 92 per cent year-on-year.
For more information, contact Countryside Alliance head of media Charlotte Cooper on 0207 8409220 and 07500 834163 or email email@example.com