THE GREAT SHOOTS
BY BRIAN P. MARTIN QUILLER PUBLISHING £35.00 ★★★★
This book has been revised and revamped and is now in its Third Edition.
For all those field sports and countryside fanatics out there, Brian P. Martin’s The Great Shoots: Britain’s finest shooting estates – past and present is one that has to feature on the bookshelves. Though it does not provide a ‘how-to’ guide on shooting, nor tips on how you can beat your greatest shooting rivals, this large hardback book provides a comprehensive overview of the history of some of the country’s greatest shooting estates.
Starting off with detailed background information on society’s shifting attitudes towards the game-shooting scene, a fascinating insight into the relationship between shooting and conservation, as well as the technical developments that have shaped gun-making and game rearing, the introductory section provides an interesting overview of the age-old sport as a whole. Martin then takes the reader through the history of over 170 shooting estates in the UK, giving a glimpse into the lives of the rich and famous who have owned these magnificent estates from the 19th century all the way up to today.
Having selected a range of shooting locations from across England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales, it is not exclusively dedicated to a Scottish audience. That said, it does cover some beautiful Highland locations like Moy, as well as Burncastle and Tolihill, and Aberdeenshire. Though it is perhaps not one to buy if you are utterly devoted to the Scottish shooting scene, it nevertheless offers you the chance to broaden your knowledge about other noteworthy destinations.
There is a nice balance in this book – with both personal and sporting stories, past and present, there is something for both the old-fashioned shooters as well as the more modern shots of today. What’s more, the stories are brought to life with stunning images of each location, making this an ideal book to have kicking around the house for a relaxed weekend read.
“Martin takes the reader through the history of over 170 shooting estates in the UK