It is now 6 weeks since the season ended abruptly, and we all had to put our guns away (please do think about getting them serviced). Amazingly next season will be my 24th year as a Sporting Agent at The Royal Berkshire Shooting School which is hard to believe….the years have just flown past!
I have to say that the 2020/21 season was by far the most challenging I have experienced, with Covid-19 causing mayhem with our plans for what looked set to be a record season. Last March, nobody really knew what impact the virus would have and so each estate had to quickly agree their own cancellation policy to offer clients with very limited knowledge of what might lay ahead.
Some shoots decided to close their doors and take a “year out”, some ran a reduced programme, and some carried on with plans for a full season depending on how much risk they were prepared to take. No estate managed to avoid the disruption and I know that substantial losses were incurred. However, I would personally like to thank all the estates for the success of the days we were able to shoot and for being innovative and creative in the way they changed the daily procedures and formats to create a Covid safe environment for the guns and all estate staff. A major achievement.
With a full vaccine programme now rolling out at great pace in the UK, I am hopeful and optimistic that next season will be far less complicated although it would be naïve of me to promise that it will be “business as usual”.
Pleasingly, we are taking a strong number of bookings for next season and we are seeing a demand and an appetite to make up for the days that we all missed out on last season. With so many shoots having to “roll over” days from last season, dates are not as freely available as they would be. So, if you are looking for specific dates or specific estates, I would urge you not to delay and contact us now.
As part of getting ready for next season, we will shortly be announcing the shoots and dates of our Roving Days and will circulate details of these as soon as we can. Meanwhile if you are looking to get out with your gun a little sooner, Katie has some amazing opportunities for simulated days on some of our premiere estates.