Some weeks ago I stood on a rooftop terrace in London Fields looking out over the city.
Ending my moment of tranquility, a rather nasal voice from behind me asked if I had a lighter. It was somebody I’d been introduced to earlier that evening
— a friend of a friend who happened to be at the same party.
For a few minutes we exchanged vague pleasantries. I told him
I edited “a fieldsports magazine” and he insisted on knowing which one. “Shooting Times?” he responded in delight after I told him. “I always read it in the bath and have done since I was about nine.” It was an intimate admission and a pleasingly unlikely place to meet a countryman.
After an hour or so of talking about walked-up grouse he asked me, very thought provokingly, whether, in this day and age, Guns should still feel obliged to wear ties.
I pondered for a while and then said, “to me it’s all about respect for the birds and that, ultimately, is about clean kills and sporting shots, not a silk number knotted elegantly around someone’s neck”.
In fact, I think I would even go as far as saying it would be no bad thing for the image of shooting if we were to cast off our ties.
I’m quite sure many of you disagree ferociously — I look forward to a few sartorial conversations out in the field this coming season. I’m counting down the days.
Patrick Galbraith, Editor