A shooting syndicate on National Trust land in Surrey has reacted angrily to confirmation that its sport will be banned for fear of disturbing visitors.

Members of the syndicate at Polesden Lacey, near Dorking, were told earlier in the season that their lease would be terminated, but had hoped for a change of heart after a Shooting Times feature revealed the Trust was looking for ?potential solutions?.

The shoot?s former captain and leaseholder, Andrew Courtney, said: ?Eternal shame on the National Trust for closing a small, safe and traditional game shoot that has existed for generations without causing any inconvenience to anybody.

?We have lost a shoot and a way of life because of the Trust?s lack of interest in the estate and traditions which it is entrusted to preserve.?

The Trust says that the continuation of the shoot is incompatible with the ?quiet enjoyment of visitors?, but that it will allow shoot members to continue using its barn as a meeting place.

Director of conservation Peter Nixon told Shooting Times how the Trust had looked for the ?potential solutions? that he had mentioned to the magazine back in November.

He said: ?The regional director felt it would be helpful to have an external perspective taken by somebody who was completely unconnected with the property, but who had experience of visitor management and an understanding of shooting.

The rest of this article appears in the 22nd February issue of Shooting Times.

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