The Advisors

 

 
Mark Williams - Gamekeeper

I’ve been involved in game rearing, shooting and conservation my whole life. We have been running a game farm as a family for over 20 years, which my brother and I have now taken over in the last few years.

I am also a gamekeeper on a small local estate, which hosts some fantastic small days for the family and their friends.

I really enjoy being out on other local shoots picking up with my dogs and the odd day on the peg myself.

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Simon Whitehead - Professional Demonstrator

Simon Whitehead is an exception to the rule. A rabbit controller by trade, his demonstrations at events over the Summer months are ranked amongst the finest on the show circuit. He writes for The Shooting Times, shoots and edits his own films, as well as acting as a consultant for media and production companies across the UK on rabbit and ferret related matters. Every part of Simon's work is based upon always trying to improve on what you have already achieved. Through his writing, books, films and talks, Simon's work and influences will be seen, read about or witnessed across not only the UK but the world.

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    Adrian Rose - North West Bushcraft

An organisation set up to promote Bushcraft, Wild camping, Wild Food Foraging and Preservation, Historic Living Skills,Wildlife and Natural skills. Adrian Rose who is the founder of NW Bushcraft is extremely knowledgeable and is probably the North West’s leading authority within this area and is often called upon to share this wide a varied understanding of outdoor knowledge. 

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Grace Battarbee - Gamekeeping

I am 19 years old. I was born and raised on a dairy farm in Lancashire. From a young age I took a great interest in the gamekeeping world which is what lead me to study a 2-year land and wildlife Management course (gamekeeping).

Whilst studying at college I was also doing a 3-year apprenticeship on Bleasdale estate under the head Keeper Michael Slinger.

I have always been surrounded by working dogs, shooting and agriculture work. My goal was to become a full-time gamekeeper myself however I got into a relationship with my best friend who had also studied gamekeeping at Myerscough College and I decided to follow him to Northumberland as a grouse keeper.

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Hannah Jackson - Contract Shepherdess 

Introducing Ridgelines Ambassador Hannah Jackson.

Hannah is a first generation farmer who grew up near Liverpool and swapped the city life for the Lake District hills to learn how to farm. Since then she has built up her own successful contract shepherding business, and got her own small holding with 120 commercial sheep and 4 highland cattle and built her own brand ‘red shepherdess’.

Last year she was shortlisted in the top 3 for young farmer of the year. She recently was one of the first women to compete of channels 4s SAS Who Dares Win, getting through to the final.

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Royce Kirkley - Estate Stalker

I’ve been shooting since I was 8 years old with my dad James Kirkley who still is a great inspiration in my life I enjoy fly fishing and game shooting, I’ve worked for Swillington Shooting Supplies as a Estate Stalker for the last 17 years at Pine Forest Lodge in Perthshire 

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Zoë Colville - Farmer/Shepherdess

Zoë and Kriss started building their flock back when she was a hairstylist & colourist in Soho, London and since then have managed with blood, sweat and tears to grow their stock to such a point where they can support the both of them financially and begin to branch out into their new venture, a butcher's shop, finishing the cycle from the field all the way to the fridge ensuring the produce is treated with the respect it deserves. 

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Ali Hill - Traditional Farmer/ Farm Manager

I am a farm manager in Somerset in the chew valley. We run about 1000 acres and we are a mixed farm with sheep, beef, arable and a couple of pigs. Since taking over the running of the farm I have increased the flock to 450 ewe (looking to reach 800) and reduced the suckers herd down to 80 currently. This will hopefully mean that both enterprises have an equal part in the business and support one and the other through harder times. Before this I was a stock manager on an intensive beef farm. We started with finishing 400 Angus calves a year and by the end of my two years there we were finishing 1000 Angus calves a year. This wasn’t what I really wanted to be doing in farming so decide to come up to Somerset and work with nature a bit more as well as producing some fantastic animals. I grew up on a dairy farm in Dorset so have always had a passion for farming.

Outside of work I have recently got on to the Next Generation Ambassadorship scheme with the NSA so looking to open my eye and learn more about the sheep farming sector. I also spend a big part of my winter out shooting and beating.

My Instagram page. I have recently invested in a few new toys (drone and GoPro) so I am able to capture more of what I get up to on the farm. My main reason for doing instagram is to show and teach people what happens on a farm day to day. I am also involved with FaceTime a farmer which involves me doing a FaceTime chat with a group of school children every couple of week showing them what were are up to on the farm and where their food comes from. I have really enjoyed doing this over the last couple of years and seeing the kids reactions to what we are doing. 

Future Plans. I am looking to start my own flock of sheep currently and then steadily grow that into a business for me and my other half to have as our own. We hope to raise our kids on a farm we can call our own in the future as I believe it’s a fantastic place to grow up and explore. We have a 3 month old girl that has now become my driving force to look towards the future.

Instagram

Geoff Saint - Grouse Keeper

From a young age my father had me hooked into the countryside, taking me fishing or being sat in the hide when Pidgeon shooting. Skip a few years and going into Myerscough College where I studied Level 3 Land and Wildlife Management, I took the gamekeeping route due to my brother at the time being a Grouse keeper.

My father being a full-time dog trainer and my brother a gamekeeper it made finding a job and getting the crucial experience that would help to become a gamekeeper far easier than expected. I’m currently working as a Grouse keeper in Northumberland, one of the best-known areas for the Red Grouse, Blanchland Estate is set in some of the most beautiful scenery in Northumberland and I feel privileged to be able to work on these moors every day we have around 5,000 acres of mixed moorland and woodland that we work on.

Hunting/shooting, fishing and working dogs is my lively hood, I’m fortunate enough to do what I love and get paid for it, my career as a Gamekeeper has just started and I look forward too many years in this industry.

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