WIL­LIAM EVANS CON­NAUGHT

Shooting Gazette - - High-Seat hunting -

From £6,700

An­other gun to to­tally erad­i­cate my pre­con­cep­tions when tested, the Con­naught and its big­ger brother the Pre­mium Con­naught are side­lock side-by-side shot­guns I can rec­om­mended to­tally with­out reser­va­tion. Based on the 216 model gun by Span­ish gun­maker Grulla the Con­naught is a true side­lock shot­gun with dou­ble trig­gers well wor­thy of wear­ing the Wil­liam Evans name. It re­mains among the best guns I have ever tested in terms of shoot­ing plea­sure, a not in­con­sid­er­able feat for any gun let alone one com­ing in at such a low price.

The Pre­mium model has been around for a cou­ple of years now and is more ex­pen­sive at around £11,500, es­pe­cially when one con­sid­ers the pos­si­ble op­tions list, how­ever it is no less suc­cess­ful than its cheaper sib­ling. You may se­lect your own stock blank when or­der the Pre­mium ver­sion of the gun, and thought­ful touches such as a rounded edge to the trig­ger guard abound, giv­ing the gun a real feel­ing of qual­ity.

Shoot­ing the gun is an ab­so­lute joy, with su­perbly neu­tral bal­ance and very sat­is­fy­ing trig­ger pulls. Re­coil is very well con­trolled in­deed. This is a gun care­fully de­signed with the Bri­tish game shoot­ing mar­ket in mind, and the care and at­ten­tion the Con­naught has re­ceived in de­vel­op­ment is clear to see when shoot­ing. The 20 bore Pre­mium I tested most re­cently was an ab­so­lute hoot and would be my num­ber one pick for a new side-by-side.

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