Our favourite moment from this year’s BBC Countryfile Live held at Castle Howard was the reaction of a seven year old boy to experiencing his first mouthful of pigeon on the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation stand who declared: "Eat pigeon, it's better than Haribo."
The stand was busy across all four days of the event with the public interacting with gamekeepers and learning about predation control, wildfires and general moorland management.
The NGO Educational Trust, had a fantastic display highlighting the benefits to other wildlife with the planting of game cover crops. They brought the Bellamy Award with them which was awarded to Bolton Castle in 2019 for spearheading curlew conservation on their estate [photo of Ian Sleightholme, gamekeeper at Bolton Castle proudly showing off the award]. The BASC shooting simulator was on hand for visitors to have a go.
Children were entertained with quizzes, puzzles and word searches, along with screen printing and the team from Wild & Game were there with a selection of award-winning game pies that they couldn’t dish out fast enough to the public keen for a taste (and staff on the stand of course!).
There was pigeon plucking with an entertaining demonstration on how much food a pigeon can eat, a butcher’s block with a rabbit and pigeon butchery and tasting, and a full ‘Taste of Game’ kitchen with chefs Ollie Prince, Silver Sheldon, Simon Whitehead & Esther Veerman.
Not forgetting Jonny Scott with his books, the British Deer Society, David Jones the NGO’s historian, John Cavana with his gun dogs (Redmills dog food), Pakefield Ferrets and the GWCT.