As my time comes to an end at the helm, it has made me reflect on the challenges and wins that the team has experienced. I can only say that it’s been an amazing and educational journey getting the BGA off the ground into what it is today; a hugely important part of the future for shooting.
It has been exceptionally hard work for all involved, our small dedicated and passionate team have worked excessive hours against many challenges to come out the otherside on top, so it is with huge thanks to Louisa, Sam, Olivia, Leon and Matt for their continued hard work and commitment over the last two years. The BGA Board of Directors currently consisting of Simon Chantler, Richard Blackburn, Dylan Williams, Charlie McVeigh, Alan Beynon, Richard Britten-Long and Peter Watson, have all given their time, resource and efforts pro-bono. This has been over and beyond the call of duty, protecting what they hold dear on behalf of us all, so I am truly indebted to them all and hope you will also appreciate their significant involvement. A special thank you to our Chairman, Ivan Shenkman, who hasn’t only been a huge support to me and the team but without him the BGA would not be here today, his generosity, tenacity and passion is second to none and I thank him for everything he has done. A big thank you to all our members who have supported the BGA and believed in its principles, you are the fabric of the organisation and without you the BGA would not be able to exist; we will make a difference to the future of shooting. A final thank you to all those who have supported, donated and championed the BGA in the many different formats, myself and the team are hugely grateful.
I couldn’t feel more comfortable in handing the reins over to the BGA’s new CEO Liam Stokes. Liam is a hugely versatile, knowledgeable and impressive individual, who will no doubt make a continued success of the BGA by bringing his political nouse to the team having most recently been at Defra. This will ensure the BGA is fit for purpose in the political arena where standards and best practice are crucial to the future of shooting. I hope you will support him and the team going forward while continuing to be the vocal advocates of the BGA in today’s world.
I leave with sadness but contentment in the achievements we have made in a relatively short period of time and look forward to seeing where the BGA goes next, from game farms to grouse moors, its pioneering independently audited assurance scheme is vital to sustaining shooting going forward. The support and collaboration of the shooting organisations in the BGA’s work is testiment to the desire to unite and preserve what we have from across the industry.
The world around us is changing and we must adapt to the present in order to remain in the future.
Please do enjoy some of the interesting reads below and I hope to see you out in the field in the future.