Visitors to this year’s Country Land & Business Association(CLA) Game Fair enjoyed three full days, 500 acres and 930 stands dedicated to shooting, fishing, hunting and country life.

Organisers told Shooting Times that the 51st Game Fair, which was held last weekend at the Duke of Rutland’s Belvoir Castle, in Leicestershire, went exceedingly well. Director of the Game Fair David Hough said: “We have been delighted with the exhibitors’ reports of good business that has been done over the course of the show. The number of bags being carried back to cars has been far greater than anticipated in the present climate.” He added that Gunmakers’ Row and the clay line was also packed throughout the three days with enthusiasts creating strong business for the gun trade. Though the final attendance figures had not been released at the time of going to press, organisers said the caravan park was full throughout, with more than 7,000 visitors. “This year there was more comment than ever on the number of overseas visitors from Europe and beyond,” added Mr Hough.

Following criticism that no senior Labour ministers had attended debates on rural affairs held on Friday, DEFRA minister Huw Irranca-Davies visited on Sunday and toured the site with CLA president Henry Aubrey-Fletcher. “It’s been a fantastic experience seeing the diversity that happens at The CLA Game Fair,” said Mr Irranca-Davies.

Clayshooting events were one of the major highlights of the Game Fair this year. The inaugural Champion of Champions clay pigeon shoot was won by Chris Biddlecombe, from Gloucestershire, who notched up an impressive score of 34 out of 40. The Pro Gun Professional Shoot winner was multiple world champion clay shooter Ben Husthwaite after a strongly contested shootoff between him and Graham Stirzaker, a former FITASC World Cup Winner.

The rest of this article appears in 29 July issue of Shooting Times.

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