13 June 2017

Sporting teams rise to the conservation challenge

Gun dog scurries were one of the many sporting challenges at the Levens Team Challenge, which has raised over £7,000 for charity. Photocredit: Tom SykesA day of sporting challenges in Kendal, Cumbria has raised just over £7,000 for wildlife research. The Levens Team Challenge was arranged by the Lancashire and Cumbria branches of the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT), and the money raised will go towards funding the Trust's groundbreaking conservation research.

The Levens Team Challenge was held on Sunday 28 May in the stunning setting of Levens Park at the gateway to the Lake District National Park, Cumbria. The event was kindly hosted by Richard and Naomi Bagot. It follows similar GWCT events held in previous years at Underley, which have proved a popular draw for the spring bank holiday.

Thirteen teams of all ages competed in a wide variety of sporting events from clay shooting, archery, gun dog scurries to fly fishing, quad-bike and trailer driving, digger manoeuvring and stone skimming. A large crowd turned out for what proved to be a beautiful spring day.

The four highest scores in the .410 bolting bunny event competed in a tie break which was a timed retrieve of a dummy from the far bank of the River Kent. The winner was a dog trained by Josie Smith and run by her team mate Mark Swindlehurst. There were also prizes for the best team, most original team name, highest scoring lady competitor and most outrageous picnic!

The day ended with GWCT Lancashire committee chairman Nick Mason outlining some of the recent scientific research carried out by the Trust. He singled out the current conservation project to save the curlew, an iconic bird for the North of England. The GWCT is dedicated to finding practical and scientifically-researched conservation methods to preserve the British countryside for future generations.

Nick Mason said, “Anyone interested in conservation should join the GWCT, not just those who have been introduced to the charity’s work through involvement in field sports.”

The Trust would like to thank sponsors Rathbone Investment Management, Davis & Bowring, Ashcroft Plant Ltd, ERIK Aaron Shooting, Erik Verbeeck, and Hewetson & Johnson for their contributions to a fantastic day. The Trust also thanks the hosts Richard and Naomi Bagot, and artist Alistair Makinson, who kindly donated a sporting painting to raffle on the day.

The GWCT is now planning for more events in the North West, including a dinner and sporting auction at the Inn at Whitewell, Lancashire, on Thursday 12 October, and a pub quiz at the Plough at Lupton in Cumbria on Thursday 23 November. For more information about these and other upcoming events, please contact Nick Mason at nick.mason@davis-bowring.co.uk .

END

Photocaption: Gun dog scurries were one of the many sporting challenges at the Levens Team Challenge, which has raised over £7,000 for charity. Photocredit: Tom Sykes.


Notes to editors

The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust – providing research-led conservation for a thriving countryside. The GWCT is an independent wildlife conservation charity which has carried out scientific research into Britain’s game and wildlife since the 1930s. We advise farmers and landowners on improving wildlife habitats. We employ 22 post-doctoral scientists and 50 other research staff with expertise in areas such as birds, insects, mammals, farming, fish and statistics. We undertake our own research as well as projects funded by contract and grant-aid from Government and private bodies. The Trust is also responsible for a number of Government Biodiversity Action Plan species and is lead partner for grey partridge and joint lead partner for brown hare and black grouse.

ISDN radio broadcast line - at our Fordingbridge HQ we have an ISDN radio broadcast line, allowing us to conduct interviews remotely.

For information, contact:
Joel Holt
Telephone: 01425 651000
Email: press@gwct.org.uk

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