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PhD on driven shooting Chris Packham tried to stop is now published

Dr Tracey Latham-Green has published her PhD which concludes that driven shooting brings a positive effect

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A research paper “Understanding the social impact of participation in driven game shooting in the UK” has given an evidence-based picture of shooting which indicates that shooting creates strong social networks, offers support and reduces loneliness, provides regular exercise and positively impacts mental health.


The author, Dr Tracey Latham-Green, is an impartial researcher. She is not from a fieldsports or shooting background and has never been involved in activities opposed to these pastimes.

The study consisted of seven field visits to different sizes and types of shoots, both commercial and not-for profit syndicates or club shoots, along with 45 in-depth interviews with the full range of participants in driven game shooting including beaters, pickers-up and guns.  From this a detailed questionnaire was produced which created a comprehensive quantitative dataset of 2424 survey responses.

The research was independently funded from the departmental budget surplus of the University of Northampton’s Directorate for Research, Impact and Enterprise and received no external funding from any organisations.

Criticism from Chris Packham

However, in 2019 Chris Packham had attacked the PhD, describing it as “invalid” and lacking in “independence and impartiality” in an e mail to the Vice Chancellor of Northampton University. In reply a spokesperson for the University of Northampton said: “Mr Packham contacted the university under the misapprehension that the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) were involved in a research project investigating the social impact of game shooting. We were happy to clarify that the University was entirely funding the research with no money from external agencies.”

The executive summary can be downloaded here.

Welcoming and friendly

Speaking to Shooting Times, Dr Latham Green added: ”

“Having never participated in game shooting or any field sports previously I was unsure how I would be received by the shooting community.  Aside from initial wariness at the larger commercial shoots, once people knew I was there to complete a bona fide academic study the participants were very welcoming and friendly, keen to explain why they took part in driven game shooting and what it meant to them and their family, highlighting the strong, long-term friendships and the enjoyment they gained from taking part in a rural, social pastime.”