Background

UK: Annual Standing Conference on Countryside Sports

FACE’s Secretary General Angus Middleton and Head of Political Affairs Manuel Esparrago participated as guest speakers in the annual meeting of the Standing Conference on Countryside Sports in London. As its name suggests, the Conference gathers the main rural stakeholders in the UK, including many of the organisations under the FACE-UK umbrella.Its purpose is to be a forum where senior representatives of national associations concerned with country sports, mainly hunting, shooting and fishing come together to identify and discuss major problems so that, where necessary, the attention of the government can be drawn to any action needed. Over the years this remit has widened to encompass the overall management of the countryside and wildlife interests.

The key speaker at this event was the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Owen Paterson, who expressed his keen support for the countryside and was not shy in addressing issues such as the possibility badger-culling to tackle tuberculosis outbreaks.  

For FACE, this was another opportunity to learn more about British hunters’ expectations and also to explain certain complex international and EU issues that are at times misunderstood at a national level.