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Will Brian May buy the Rothbury Estate?

Word is that the Queen guitarist has been for a viewing, reports Emily Damment

Rothbury Estate

Views from the Rothbury Estate

Rumours are circulating that Queen guitarist, Sir Brian May, is considering buying the 9,500-acre Rothbury Estate in Northumberland. (Read our previous news article on the Rothbury Estate here.)

An article in the Daily Mail claimed May was seen touring the private estate, which is on sale for £35 million, in a helicopter with his wife Anita Dobson. There has been concern within the shooting community over the fate of the grouse shooting, salmon fishing and pheasant shooting businesses that operate on the estate, should it be bought by a business for the purposes of carbon offsetting or by an individual who opposes country sports.

Brian May

Brian May at a rally to protest against proposed changes to the Hunting Act

May is a high profile supporter of the RSPCA and founded the Save Me Trust, “an animal welfare organisation that exists to proactively protect wild animals through campaigns and collaboration”. The Save Me Trust is actively against trophy hunting, driven grouse shooting, and the use of snares, and has actively run campaigns to amend the hunting act and stop the badger cull.

If Sir Brian does take the plunge, it is safe to assume that the gamekeepers and locals who rely on the sporting activities of Rothbury for their livelihoods will be hung out to dry.