Matt Smith - Sporting Agent
Matt has recently joined the team at RBSS, working with Gordon and Leo in the Sporting Agency, as well as teaching clients in the valley. He and his dog Isla have settled in very well - so much so that it is like he has always been here! Find out a little more about him below:
Clothing items I couldn’t live without: Number one would have to be my Schoffel Ketton pack-away jacket – It is super comfortable, 100% waterproof, nice, lightweight, and breathable – I’m not a fan of big heavy shooting coats and would much prefer to ‘layer-up’ and the Ketton gives me the option to 100% weatherproof without being boiling hot! It is great to shoot in being easy to move in and having decent-sized bellow pockets for cartridges, but it is just as nice to take the dog for a walk in or stand at the side-line watching the rugby on a wet day! Second would be my Purdey grouse shirt – My biggest bugbear with shooting shirts is they all tend to be white! This is fine on pheasant and partridges but for wild game such as grouse, especially on a hot, ‘shirt-sleeves ‘day that bright, white, shirt is going to act as one big ‘bird-scarer’ and you will stand out like a sore thumb, the Purdey Grouse shirt is a great colour being made up of duller, neutral colours such as browns and purples and almost ‘blends-in’ to the moor. It’s a great, generous fit allowing for free-movement whilst shooting and is nice and lightweight – I wear mine on the grouse moor and in the pigeon-hide.
Favourite way to spend a Sunday:In Summer I enjoy nothing more than walking up the road to watch a game of cricket at West Ilsley CC where the RBSS’s very own Steve Turner makes a star appearance as opening batsman – a few pints of West Berkshire Brewery’s ‘Good Old Boy’ wouldn’t go amiss either! In Wintertime I love a good walk out over the Ridgeway from our farm in West Berkshire to the nearby Eyston Arms in East Hendred for a roast dinner (almost as good as my mother’s!).
My last meal: My last meal would have to be game; I love cooking it and it is so good for you, it is also the original sustainable food source and I believe we must eat what we shoot. For starter it would have to be Muntjac saddle-eye fillet carpaccio – the ‘Muntie’ is such an underrated little deer, but I think it produces the best-tasting venison. Main would be woodpigeon; the breasts can be cooked like min-steaks, and they are so good! We were served woodpigeon with potato rosti, crushed, minted peas and black pudding at a shoot in Exmoor two years ago and that would be my choice! As for dessert, the sweet tooth in me would lean towards a sticky-toffee pudding but I am also a sucker for a cheese board… however despite growing up in Wensleydale, I can’t stand Wensleydale Cheese!