Great British Shooting Awards: Meet the judges
Voting is now closed for the 2023 Great British Shooting Awards, so let's meet the panel of judges
Launched in 2018 and given out for the first time at the British Shooting Show in 2019, the Great British Shooting Awards are designed to give much-needed recognition to the products, organisations and people that make the shooting industry tick. This year, there will be 17 award categories, representing every corner of the market – from manufacture to retail to conservation.
During November, the fieldsports trade first had the opportunity to nominate any product or person in any category. These nominations were then whittled down to shortlists of five per category by our panel of judges, before opening up to a public vote. (Keep up to date with all the latest developments as we gear up for the 2023 GBSAs by following the link: https://www.futureevents.uk/gbsa23/home)
So who are the judges in this year’s Great British Shooting Awards?
Dr Al Gabriel, from Northumberland, is a molecular biologist with a PhD in genetics. A former Territorial Army soldier, he is also an avid deerstalker, game shooter and advocate for diversity and equality in the fieldsports sector.
Professor Ann Mortimer is a professor of psychiatry, consultant psychiatrist and medical doctor. A late entrant to the shooting community, she has been a BASC councillor for seven years. A keen stalker and game shot, she is an expert in mental health and firearms matters, and an advocate for ladies shooting”.
Geoff Garrod is National Vice Chairman of the National Gamekeepers Organisation. Geoff is a well-known gamekeeper and came to prominence decades ago through the pioneering ‘Keepers Diary’ video journals and his regular appearances in the sporting press and The Shooting Show. In addition to the above Geoff is also Head Keeper at Audley End Estate in Essex, and writes a regular column for Sporting Gun magazine. Geoff has been a keeper since leaving school, starting at Six Mile Bottom before moving on to Audley End where has spent the last 27 years with his wife Karen and sons Josh and Justin. Geoff is an accomplished game and clay shot, stalker and fly fisherman.
Liam Bell, is chairman of the NGO and writes regularly for Shooting Times, when he has a spare moment away from running the Millchope Park shoot in Shropshire. The piece of kit he couldn’t live without is his wellington boots and his advice for all young keepers is to stick at it and not get despondent when things are going wrong, stay focussed and always give 100 per cent. If you do that you will stand out from the crowd, someone will notice you and that dream job offer will follow.
Liam Stokes is CEO of British Game Assurance. Formerly at the Countryside Alliance, Liam writes about the countryside for publications as diverse as The Spectator, Shooting Times, and Unherd.
Patrick Galbraith lives in Dumfriesshire with his terrier and is currently drawing up plans for a new duck pond. He is the Editor of Shooting Times and writes for The Telegraph, The Spectator, Country Life, and The Times where he reviews nature writing.
Simon is the executive director of the Gun Trade Association, protecting, promoting and representing trade interests in the political, licensing and enterprise fields at home and abroad. Previously he completed a full operational career in the army, spanning everything from advanced gun technologies to information warfare. He was awarded an OBE for developing concepts for the prevention of violent conflict. He is a deer manager, game shot and has run his own firearms business since 1997 making live-firing bronze cannon.
Tim Bonner is Chief Executive of the Countryside Alliance, which campaigns to promote and protect the countryside and the rural way of life. Tim first joined the Alliance as Press Officer in 2002, and subsequently worked as Head of Media and Director of Campaigns before becoming Chief Executive in 2015. Previously he was a farmer and free range egg producer in North Devon. He also served as a councillor on North Devon District Council. Tim was born in 1970 and was educated at Charterhouse and Wye College, University of London reading Countryside Management. He is married to Ebe. They have five children and live in Hertfordshire.