It doesn’t matter that its Christmas, if you need to talk………

The Christmas period is the highlight of the year for many but can also be a massively stressful time of the year for many others.

Mental health is especially noticeable in the farming and Gamekeeping community where many lonesome days are spent out on the hills.

For all gamekeepers and their family members please remember Jamie’s Helpline Tel: 0300 1233088. This phone number will be answered by specially trained people who you can talk to in times of need.

Please make the call and help make things change for the better. It’s so important to talk and equally important to know that there is always someone out there who will listen. Mental health issues can affect anyone, and mental health well being is vitally important.

The Gamekeepers Welfare Trust exists to support gamekeepers, stalkers and ghillies, and their dependants past and present, please use them.

The Festive Feeling

A very festive looking pheasant shoot on the edges of the moor, but where are the dogs Christmas jumpers? 👀.

Local farmers, keepers, students and a couple of retirees enjoying a festive gathering and some pheasant beating and shooting.

 

Today The Country Decides

The rural communities need your vote to secure their futures. These are 2 snippets from the replies I received from the conservative parliamentary candidates to my letters regarding their views on the North York Moors and moorland communities.

Robert Goodwill – Scarborough and Whitby

“As a farmer myself I very much understand the importance of sustainable rural communities and the need to ensure that our moorland resource is managed, not only to benefit the wildlife that so many members of the public enjoy seeing but also to ensure that sheep farming and grouse shooting can continue to have a viable future.”

 

Kevin Hollinrake – Thirsk & Malton

“Having visited the North York Moors on several occasions I am very supportive of the investment and positive effect it has on the rural economy.”

 

I have still had NO reply from either the Labour or Lib Dem candidates so we can only deduce from their silence what their views are.

If you haven’t already made up your mind or you can help others make up theirs please do so, every vote counts.

Still Time to Earn Some Extra Cash

The grouse season finished yesterday but there’s still plenty of chances to get out and about and earn some extra cash.

Check out some of these lovely views while out on the pheasants today.

There’s not many places where you can go to work with such a vast array of ages.  Today we had 4 gentleman in their 70’s, 6 in their 60’s, 3 ladies under 20 and a good deal in the middle all out enjoying a days beating earning extra money.

 

Election Thoughts

The letter (shown below) that I sent to the Yorkshire Post which they kindly printed was a copy of what I had sent to the parliamentary candidates for the North York Moors area.

I have received 2 positive replies both of which were from conservative candidates and only SILENCE from the Labour and Liberal Democrat’s.

NYMMO feel that it is vital for the candidates of all parties to listen to both science and the facts as well as supporting local and rural communities rather than simply accepting lines that are fed to them by people with an agenda.  There is a huge moorland community supported by Grouse Shooting which brings in over £15 million a year of income for rural businesses.  Every year grouse moor owners in England and Wales spend a combined total of £52.5 million on land management.

On Thursday the country will decide, to help secure our rural future choose wisely and make your vote count.

“As you will know, the constituency which you are contending at the upcoming General Election is home to the North Yorkshire Moors. The heather habitat of the moors is a unique environment, and one which is rarer than tropical rainforest, 75% of heather moorlands are found in Britain, and these sustain a wide variety of wildlife, birdlife and plant species.

However, this is only achievable thanks to the moorland management carried out by the moorland communities, and the significant income which driven grouse shooting brings to a very fragile rural economy.  It is estimated that nationally, people who shoot spend £2.5 billion each year on goods and services.  While around 3,000 gamekeepers and beaters are employed by the UK’s moorland estates, there are thousands of others who depend on the income that grouse shooting brings, from publicans and B&B owners to tweed weavers and gun manufacturers.  Without grouse shooting, the rural economies of these fragile, remote areas of the country would risk being entirely wiped-out.

In addition to the benefits that managed moorlands bring to rural economies, the moors also benefit directly from investment.  In England, owners and tenants of grouse moors spend £50 million on their management each year.  This sum simply could not be created by any alternative moorland uses, such as rewilding for wildlife tourism, and nor could these jobs and related incomes be sustained.

Our heather moorlands are home to many rare and endangered bird species.  The merlin is our smallest bird of prey, and 80% of them are found on our grouse moors.  Waders such as curlew, lapwing and golden plover all thrive on moors managed for red grouse, and when moor management is stopped, these bird populations plummet.  

As well as being simply about moorlands, this is about the UK’s moorland communities, and rural communities more widely.  It is vital that rural voters feel that both their candidate and their political party will support them, and help them, particularly in the face of Brexit.  Many of our Moorland Communities feel as if their views are not being heard, and it’s up to politicians to change that.

We would welcome the opportunity to invite you to visit the Moors, where we can show you the wonderful diversity of bird and plant life that they have to offer, and we look forward to working with you in the future.”

 

The End of the Grouse Season is Here

The Grouse Season runs from the 12th August through to the 10th December, meaning the final shots of the year could be heard today.  However in reality it is quite unlikely that any estates are still actually shooting as the vast majority of estates will have had the bulk of their shoot days in August and September.

As Red Grouse are a wild game bird estates look to shoot only the surplus each year whilst trying to maintain a good stock level for future breding.  Despite the very unwelcome arrival of Heather Beetle to the North York Moors we have overall recorded good numbers in 2019 with the majority of estates completing a full calendar of planned shoot days and reflecting on a productive year not only for the estates but the wider community involved.

It is not just the Shooting Estates that benefit from a good Grouse Season but the wider community heavily feels the impact.  Local shops, restaurants, pubs and butchers are among those who rely on grouse shooting for their businesses to survive during the quieter winter months and for individuals who earn extra money throughout the season by helping out on shoot days also get to have a little extra money in their pockets.

Young and Old, Male and Female there is no discrimination in place for Shoot Days, everyone is made very welcome in the shoot day families.  This year we are pleased to say we have encouraged even more people to try game and especially grouse, we have let people take their first shots on keepers day and most of all we’ve all had fun.

The preparation for next years season is already underway with the burning of heather, predator control and the training of some young new dogs. Exciting times are ahead and there’s always lots to look forward to, fingers crossed that lady luck is feeling kind as we now begin the countdown to August 12th 2020.

 

The Best Game Cook Books

As we look back at Great British Game Week 2019 we’re hoping that you’re all now feeling creative and ready to cook up lots of game dishes.

BUT don’t worry you don’t have to do it alone!  Why not treat yourself or a friend to a gorgeous Game Cook Book to help you whip up a masterpiece.

 

Great British Game Week – Our Winner is Announced

As Great British Game Week draws to a close this evening it is time for us to share the news of our winning entries from our photography competition.

A huge thanks to Tony from Sporting & Country Images for judging our competition and deciding on the winners. We had a good number of entries and Tony said it was difficult to separate several of them but after much deliberation decided on these 2. The winner will be receiving the Wild & Game hamper and the runner up will receive a pair of NYMMO shooting socks and thermal cup.

A massive thank you to everyone who took part and we hope that we have highlighted and encouraged a few more people to look at and try game.

If you have had your 1st sample of game this week then please share your experience with us or if you have a favourite recipe then send it and let others enjoy it too.