Get a free Marlborough World leather cartridge bag

For a limited time only, we’re giving away a free Marlborough World leather cartridge bag worth £224.95 with every Marlborough World leather gun slip purchase. This is a fantastic opportunity to acquire two pieces of luxury handmade leather goods with over £200 in savings.

To get your free Marlborough World leather cartridge bag, just purchase the Marlborough World leather gun slip by clicking here. Hurry! Offer ends soon so don’t miss out.

The Marlborough World Leather Gun Slip

The Marlborough World leather gun slip is one that stands out from the crowd by a country mile. If high quality and luxury is on your mind, the Marlborough World leather gun slip will most certainly impress you. This luxury leather gun slip features a timeless design that never fails to impress both in and out of the field. It is handmade in England by skilled craftspeople who take extraordinary steps in ensuring every leather gun slip they produce is the best it can be. Made from fine tanned papaya leather, the Marlborough World Leather gun slip incorporates traditional styles with luxury from the first stitch.


Marlborough World Brown Leather Gun Slip | Guns and Country

Inside the Marlborough World Leather gun slip, you will find a soft wool like fleece lining that offers exceptional protection to either your rifle or shotgun. Firstly, the soft rich lining cushions your shotgun or rifle in the event of the gun slip being dropped or when placed down. More excitingly, the lining also protects your gun from any moisture that could cause damage to it.


Marlborough World Brown Leather Gun Slip | Guns and Country Marlborough World Brown Leather Gun Slip | Guns and Country

The Marlborough World Leather gun slip
also benefits from a full length zip that allows for easy access to your chosen gun at any time. Fully secured, the zip is strong yet can easily be undone with using just one hand. Other great benefits of the Marlborough World Leather gun slip is the strong leather strap and polished buckle that allows for easy and secure carry wherever your shooting may take you.

Marlborough World Leather Cartridge Bag

As part of your purchase of the Marlborough World Leather gun slip, you will also receive a free Marlborough World leather cartridge bag. The Marlborough World leather cartridge bag allows for easy access to additional shotgun cartridges in style. Made from luxury papaya tanned leather that matches the Marlborough World Leather gun slip,The leather cartridge bag can hold up to 50 shotgun cartridges at any given time.

Marlborough World Leather Shotgun Cartridge Bag | Guns and CountryMarlborough World Leather Shotgun Cartridge Bag | Guns and Country


The Marlborough World leather cartridge bag is handmade in England by skilled crafts people allowing for a product to be created that will last a lifetime. The easy open lid gives easy access to your shotgun cartridges but can be secured with its solid brass polished buckle. Strong leather shoulder straps enables you to carry the bag anywhere knowing it’s strongly attached.

To get your free Marlborough World leather cartridge bag, just purchase the Marlborough World leather gun slip by clicking here. Hurry! Offer ends soon so don’t miss out.

A Full Guide To Simulated Game Shooting

Now that the driven game season has come to a close, it’s a great time to consider taking part in a simulated game shooting day. In our last article we spoke about why you should practice clay shooting in the summer and furthermore, why it’s important not to just simply lock your shotgun away until the following season.

Simulated game shooting can vary greatly between providers up and down the United Kingdom so in this guide we’ll be explaining what you should expect. Typically speaking, simulated game shooting is much more flexible when compared to traditional driven game shooting in that it often takes place in the summer months. One of the benefits to this is that no one is in a hurry to finish up before dark.

Simulated game shooting days are more often than not run similar to game days. Upon your arrival in the morning, coffee and a bacon roll along with a briefing is both common and widely welcomed. Following this you and the rest of the guns will then move off to the first drive where you will notice there are pegs just like you would see on a game day. The pegs are usually positioned closer to one another but apart from this, you shouldn’t notice any other distinct changes. Unlike driven game birds, clays are much more predicable and therefore you will usually find the sky in front of you changing colour to orange as the amount of clays coming into your window increases dramatically. Another great fact about simulated game shooting is that where on a traditional pheasant shoot, you may find a team of 8 guns, it’s not uncommon to find yourself in between a team of 16 here. Pegs are usually accommodated by two guns, both of which take it in turn to load and shoot. This creates a great opportunity for some social laughter and so forth. This is not to suggest that the amount of shooting opportunities will decrease because of this, if anything they’ll increase. As we mentioned earlier, clays are much more predicable than game birds which in turn allows them to be positioned in your arc of fire as well as allowing for the drive to be paused whenever.

After a few drives comes the traditional elevenses break. As you would find on a game shoot, sausage rolls and drinks are never to far away. After this, it’s straight back into action where the drives will continue until lunch. At the end of your simulated game shooting day, it is considered normal by the guns to put some money in the pot for the trappers who work hard behind the scenes to ensure the day runs smoothly. The amount differs but generally speaking, £20 is more than acceptable.

What should you wear to a simulated game shooting day?

Unlike clay grounds, it is common for guns who are taking part in a simulated game shooting day to dress as if they were on a game shoot. Breeks, shirts, waistcoats and plenty of tweed is a common sight that helps make the day feel more real. As the majority of simulated game shooting days take place during the summer months, it does pay dividends to check the local weather forecast. The last thing you want to do is dress for a cold day and find that it’s piping hot upon your arrival. On some informal shoots, jeans and shirt conclude to be acceptable attire however it is important to check this beforehand.

One further note you should consider is your safety. As the game birds have been replaced with clays, it is important to ensure you have a good pair of glasses and preferably a hat. Take a look at our clay shooting glasses now – it’s just not worth taking the risk with all those clay fragments flying around.

What shotgun should you use on a simulated game shooting day?

On a simulated game shooting day, it’s not uncommon for guns to complain of a sore shoulder come home time. This is simply due to the amount of shooting that takes place so it’s best to prepare in advance. Selecting the right shotgun for you along with a suitable cartridge will most certainly help. We recommend the use of a light over-under shotgun simply because the barrels on side-by-sides can get hot fairly quickly. In general though, it is best to continue using the same gun you use on a game day. If this happens to be a side-by side shotgun, you need to ask yourself whether or not you are taking part in the shoot for long term overall practice or just for fun. The latter of these allows for flexibility on the shotgun you should select.

As well as selecting a suitable shotgun, you should also think about what cartridge you will be using on your simulated game shooting day. Just as you would use at the local clay ground, 7s or 8s are perfectly acceptable and offer great performance. It’s important to remember that a clay is not living and therefore pheasant loads are best left at home. Plus you’ll be doing your shoulder a favour!

How much does simulated game shooting cost?

The price of simulated game shooting days varies from provider to provider right across the country. You should expect to pay around £150 for a very basic package whereas days at prestigious estates can amount to anything up to £350. The benefit being that you are shooting on a renowned estate with almost guaranteed excellent catering facilities and drives. Your choice should depend on your budget but whichever provider you choose, we’re confident you’ll have a great day.

Whilst you’re here, why not take a look at our men’s shooting jackets and shirts. We’ve got some great bargains!


Clay shooting in the summer: Why you should be visiting your local clay ground

There’s many reasons why you should be clay shooting in the summer this year. Like most people at this time of year, we’re all waiting for some warm weather. As the temperatures begin to climb, you should be heading down to your local clay ground.

Many guns simply lock their shotguns away come February and wait patiently for the following driven game season. There are many different types of shooting available come the closure of the driven game season such as pigeon shooting if clay shooting in the summer is not your cup of tea. For most though, a few hours down at the clay ground with some friends is all you need to both keep your skills up to date and involved in the shooting world until the next season.

Once the driven game shooting season closes, even the most passionate of guns simply clean and lock away their pride of joy and there’s no reason too. Clay shooting in the summer is most defiantly worth considering and we’ll explain why.

Shooting a shotgun is a highly skilled eye-to-hand coordination sport that all of us attempt to master to perfection. It can take years of practice to perfect and some, including us never do seem to perfect it. Simply by locking your shotgun away come February not only excludes you from taking part in the sport with friends but it can also have a detrimental affect on your shooting ability. There are of course going to be some people who can simply forget about their shotgun and pick right off from where they last left off come the next season but for the majority of us, it’s just not the case.

Some people view clay shooting as boring and we disagree. Clay shooting in the summer is most defiantly far from boring and there are plenty of different options to keep you occupied.

Our favourite option for clay shooting in the summer

Our favourite for clay shooting in the summer has to be nothing other than a simulated game shoot. Simulated clay shoots are both realistic and fun to take part in. Typically speaking, they are run similar to game days in an attempt to keep the day as realistic as possible. In the morning, you’ll meet for coffee and a bacon roll before then moving off to the first drive. If you’ve never tried taking part in a simulated game shoot, it’s defiantly worth considering.

Clay shooting in the summer is not expensive

A lot of people can be put off with the idea of extra expense clay shooting brings but this is nothing more than a common myth. In fact, the Guns and Country team recently visited a local ground and enjoyed 50 clays each for £12. For those that are interested in taking part in a simulated game shoot, prices vary but generally start from around £150 each for a basic day.

Important tips and advice for clay shooting in the summer

  1. Make sure the shotgun you are planning on using fits you. If you’re at all concerned, we recommend you visit a local shooting school and have a professional gun fit. Most people will see an improvement in their shooting abilities straight away.
  2. If you’re new to clay shooting, you should consider booking a course of lessons. The amount of lessons you will need is down to you to decide but generally speaking, six lessons is typically more than sufficient.
  3. We recommend you purchase a clay shooting vest. They’re great for ensuring you always have the next cartridge close to hand, plus they look great too!
  4. Invite a few friends to join you. The more people you involve, the merrier. Clay shooting in the summer can be just as sociable as game shooting in December.
Our two must have items for clay shooting in the summer
 Clay Shooting In The Summer  Clay Shooting In The Summer
 Just £26.99 Including Free Delivery  Just £59.99 Including Free Delivery

For the vast majority of shooters at some point in their lives have been asked by friends what a particular shoot was like and was it worth it. Just like anything in this world, it’s impossible to please everyone at the same time. Some game shooters for example prefer to travel around the estate in their own vehicles whilst others prefer the communal gun bus. If there is a limit on what they can and can’t do, slight frustration or even disappointment can occur. Here we have researched and gathered what we feel makes a great game shooting experience.

Shake your hand and park the car?

We don’t know of a game shoot that parks your car for you on arrival but you never know, someone out there might expect it. In this section, we’re going to talk about your arrival at the shoot and what degree of welcome you should receive.

We’re sure we say this on behalf of all game shooters out there. It’s essential that you are met by a visible host upon your arrival. There is nothing worse than arriving somewhere and then not having a clue which direction you should walk and so forth. It goes without saying that the morning of a shoot can  be a stressful time for many hosts. There’s lots to do and organise in order to ensure the day gets off to a great start, but a host that greets you upon arrival with great humour is a must!

If like most game shooters you have travelled a long way to the shoot, the next thought on your mind is either going to be about coffee and/or bacon. A bacon sandwich or for those that prefer a lighter option along with a strong tea or coffee can be restorative upon arrival. A good functional game shoot room can also have a big impact on your opinion of the shoot from the very beginning. This is not to suggest you should arrive at the shoot in your Range Rover and expect a room in a castle with cashmere, but if it’s both cold and raining outside, an old barn with large holes in the roof is not ideal. A warm barn with food and drink along with happy faces is all that is actually required (and access to toilet facilities of course).

It is also important that you are given the opportunity to greet the game keeper shortly after your arrival. It’s important to remember that both the host and the gamekeeper are going to be under a lot of pressure in the morning but if the opportunity arises, one would expect a greet.

What about the general atmosphere?

It’s important that there is a great atmosphere from the start of your days game shooting right through to when you leave. Obviously there are days that just don’t go to plan and many things can affect the general atmosphere of the shoot but it is important to ensure you feel welcome and ‘looked after’. It doesn’t take much from either side to remind everyone present that the day is to be fun and enjoyable. An exchange of a smile and a pleasant greeting is all it takes to initiate a good conversation that can really help the atmosphere stay at its best. The worst comes when there is one gun who waves etiquette out of the door or displays dangerous behaviour.

Quality birds

An obvious factor but one that is worth mentioning. Sometimes the birds just don’t display and more often than not, the day can still be viewed as a success simply because everyone had a great time. Nevertheless, the quality of the birds is important and should be viewed as such.

Where’s my peg?

Sometimes no matter how luck you may feel, you may just draw the peg nobody wants. Typically this will be confirmed by the sound of laughter surrounding you but nevertheless, you should take it will pride. The spacing between pegs is one which has been debated over and over again throughout the years. The old guideline of spacing between pegs was 40 yards which we feel is perfectly suitable. If the pegs are spaced out too far between one another, one could expect perfectly presented birds to just fly through the line. Pegs that are spaced closely to one another more often than not lead to confusion and frustration; It’s impossible in this situation to tell whose bird it is.


We briefly touched on transportation earlier on this article. Some guns prefer to drive themselves around the estate whilst others enjoy and look forward to the gun bus banter. For us, provided the host and gamekeeper see no problem with either of these transportation methods, the offer for both should be on the table.


You hear it all the time. Some guns prefer to shoot through whilst others do not. Depending on what your preference is will ultimately help decide whether or not you feel elevenses and so forth was adequate. For us, the nice glass of red at the end of the day can make all the difference!

Treatment and respect

We don’t know of one gun who wouldn’t want to see shot game been treated with respect. This comes down to game shooting etiquette, but it is one that we feel is worthy of mentioning in this article. Beyond this, guns enjoy being told about the different drives and what one should expect. Furthermore, the overall efficiently of the beaters is rather important.


Pickers-up and guns should work hand in hand at the end of a drive. There is no reason why a gun if able should not pick up their own shot game. This is something that differs between shoots, but it’s only polite.

Gamekeeper’s love…

  • Guns who thank the whole team at the end of the day. Beaters, pickers-up and keepers at the end of the day
  • Guns who know their own limitations and refrain from taking shots out of their personal comfort zone
  • Guns who attend to an injured bird rather than use the second barrel on another passing bird

Guns love…

  • Great company
  • Great food
  • Well presented birds with evenly spaced out pegs and drives
  • no fines!



The first question we are asked time and time again when someone is looking to buy their child a shotgun is “which calibre do I buy?”. It’s a question many of us have asked over the years and it’s one that can make all the difference to your young ones experience of shooting. Traditionally a young shooter would be started on a .410 side by side

Whichever shotgun you choose for your protégé, nothing is more important than first giving ‘proper instruction’. When we talk about ‘proper shotgun instruction’, we don’t solely refer to safe gun handling but also a variety of other factors such as general shotgun handling, swing and so forth.

An ideal shotgun for a young shot is one that fits them and one that is not too heavy or powerful enough to give them a recoil experience they will never forget. The idea is to encourage confidence in them as so they become accustomed to the shotgun, its handling and so forth as only this way will you find that their interest in the sport progresses. Whether or not you should start them off with a .410, 28-bore or a 20-bore depends on their stature, currently abilities and the amount of time they intend to use it.

.410 Shotgun

A .410 was traditionally as we mentioned above the starting platform for many young shooters. It benefits from being largely lightweight with limited recoil but it does have some negative aspects that you should at least consider. The .410 shotgun provides somewhat of a limited shot pattern which in turn increases the chances of missing the target time and time again. As we talked about earlier, the idea is to create confidence in your protégé and as you may know, missing targets is often a frustrating experience. In our opinion, the 4.10 shotgun would ideally suit a young shooter with an average build who already displays good shooting skills or has the intention of shooting often.

28 Bore & 20 Bore Shotgun

More so now than ever before, the 28 Bore and 20 Bore shotgun is becoming more popular with young shooters and there is good reason for it. Although these shotguns are typically heavier than a .410 shotgun, they do provide more firepower which in turn enables the youngster to increase his/her chances of hitting the target. The one slight drawback to 28 bore and 20 bore shotguns other than their increased weight over the .410 is recoil. The recoil in these shotguns will be more pronounced but it is possible to reduce recoil to almost nothing with the right shotgun cartridge. In our opinion, we feel that a 28 bore or 20 bore shotgun would typically suit a young shooter with an average to above average build with little or limited shooting experience. The benefits of the increased firepower and possibility for limited recoil, they make for a great all round starter shotgun.


Just like clothes, children will grow out of their shotgun fairly quickly. So whilst it is important to ensure that whatever shotgun you buy fits your child in the first place, do also expect to take a fairly regular trip down to the gunsmiths for a regular fitting. It’s important to note whilst we are on this point is that you can buy the best shotgun with a suitable gauge for your child but if it doesn’t fit them, you’re fighting a loosing battle from the start.

Over-Under Vs. Side-by-Side

Whether you should pick an over-under or a side-by-side is more of a personal choice. Over-under shotguns for youngsters tend to suffer from less recoil and they can also be slightly easier to teach with but there is a negative and that’s weight. If you think the weight of the shotgun for your youngster is going to be an issue, then a side-by-side may be most suitable. There are those of course like us here at Guns and Country who prefer the side-by-side simply because of tradition. Overall, it really comes down to personal preference and what they’re most likely going to be shooting and how often.

Our conclusion

In our opinion, we feel that for the average youngster who is showing an interest in shooting would best be suited with either a 28 bore or 20 bore shotgun provided you a good shotgun cartridge. Choosing either one of these shotguns will more than likely encourage further confidence growth in your child through them hitting the target thanks to the increase in fire power over the .410. As for whether we think you should choose an over-under or side-by-side is a tricky one. If you are a traditional game shooter who rarely visits a clay ground, then we would suggest a side-by-side. If your child is more than likely to be given tuition at a clay ground and participate in the odd drive, then an over-under would be our recommendation.

Children’s Country Clothing

Bonart Grendon Children's Country Shooting Shirt Bonart Cambridge Children's Country Shooting Shirt Bonart Elk Children's Country Lambswool Shooting Jumper
Bonart Grendon Children’s Country Shirt Bonart Cambridge Children’s Country Shirt Bonart Elk Children’s Country Lambswool Jumper
£34.99 Free Delivery Click Here £24.99 Free Delivery Click Here £37.99 Free Delivery Click Here


Bonart Children's Game Tweed Jacket Bonart Tayside Children's Country Waterproof Shooting Jacket Realtree Rocky Children's Camouflage Shooting Jacket
Bonart Children’s Game
Tweed Jacket
Bonart Tayside Children’s Waterproof Shooting Jacket Realtree Rocky Children’s Camouflage Shooting Jacket
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Bonart Men’s Country Clothing: The full story

Bonart was founded in 1922 by, originally as ‘Sweet & Hill’ in the garage of Mr H L Maisey on just £100. The company continued to experience growth year on year thanks to their designs that were both affordable and unique in their own right. Soon after the company was formed, Mr Maisey’s garage was too small and soon had to move to bigger premises. The new premises, being in central London were unfortunately in the middle of the blitz. During the time of the blitz, the company moved to temporary basement premises. After the horrors of the war had passed, Bonart then moved again to 9-11  Wilson Street, London, EC2 – a large seven floor warehouse .

With the business ever expanding in both home and export trade, Bonart Country clothing had to move once again. Mr Maisey its founder was adamant that Bonart, being a family company should not operate out of an industrial unit. That’s when Bonart then moved to Olney in Buckinghamshire to where it remains to this day.

Today Bonart Country Clothing is now celebrating over 90 years of supplying quality country clothing in the UK and their extensive range for the whole family continues to grow year on year with export markets including France, Spain, the Netherlands and the USA. It’s actually comes as know surprise given that Bonart Country Clothing represents high quality and exceptional value for money.

Why choose Bonart?

With over 90 years of experience designing and developing both attractive and usable country clothing products for the whole family, Bonart is a brand you can trust. For years now, Bonart Country Clothing has been at the centre of quality shooting clothing. Their fine collection of Ladies and Children’s Country Clothing, that was launched in 2007 continues to expand with more and more customers noticing the quality products Bonart has to offer.

What about ethics and values?

Bonart Country Clothing are experts in designing and developing fine quality outdoor country clothing that never fails to impress both in the town and country. Their comprehensive collection of classic men’s country shirts, shooting tweed and jumpers amongst others have been designed with their core values in mind. These being;

  • Affordable
  • Comfortable
  • Fit for purpose
  • Engineered to last

It is only with these four values that are embedded deep into the Bonart brand do they believe a country clothing product can be successful and loved by all. The Bonart Tweeds including the Bonart Men’s Game Tweed Jacket have been designed, tested and manufactured right here in the UK to ensure good solid British quality. Bonart continually review their country clothing collection so it matters not what season is approaching, their is always a product that’s right for you.

For Bonart, it’s not just about designing and developing the best country clothing that people will love. It is also about respecting customers and the environment. It’s one of the founding reasons why we at Guns and Country decided to offer the Bonart Country Clothing collection here. Bonart have a strong belief that their business should be conducted honestly, fairly and with respect for customers. As for the environment, Bonart are one of the very few country clothing brands that are actively attempting to reduce their impact of the natural environment.

Best Selling Men’s Bonart Clothing

It may come with no surprise that Bonart is a much loved brand both in the town and country. Below, we have listed just a few of our best selling Men’s Bonart Clothing products for you.


 Bonart Classic Game Tweed Jacket  Bonart Barbet Waterproof Shooting Fleece Jacket  Bonart Tayside Country Shooting Jacket
Bonart Men’s Classic Game Tweed Shooting Jacket

  • thorn proof finish with teflon coating
  • waterproof & breathable
  • large cartridge pockets
Bonart Men’s Barbet Waterproof Fleece Jacket

  • lightweight & warming
  • attractive synthetic suede shoulder
  • waterproof & breathable (5000mm)
Bonart Men’s Tayside Waterproof Shooting Jacket

  • waterproof & breathable (3000mm)
  • attractive all purpose men’s field jacket
  • deep cartridge pockets
Was £199.99 NOW £179.99 £99.99 Free UK Delivery £152.99 Free UK Delivery
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 Bonart Aylesbury Shirt  Bonart Carmarthen Shirt  Bonart Troon Shirt
Bonart Men’s Aylesbury
Country Shooting Shirt

  • long sleeve design with placket front
  • chest pocket with single button
  • classic country design
Bonart Men’s Carmarthen Shooting Shirt

  • long sleeve design with placket front
  • chest pocket with single button
  • rich country colours
Bonart Men’s Troon Country Shooting Shirt

  • long sleeve design with placket front
  • chest pocket with single button
  • classic check design
£29.99 Free UK Delivery £31.99 Free UK Delivery £29.99 Free UK Delivery
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Why you should consider Bonart Country Clothing

Bonart as you will already know from reading this article have been designing and manufacturing men’s country clothing for some time now. During that time, they have consistently reviewed, designed and altered their products to meet the customers needs. Bonart Men’s Country Clothing is fit for purpose featuring classical designs that never fail to impress both in the town and country. An example of this would be the Bonart Keeper Men’s Jacket that not only looks great but it does exactly what you need it to do. Large cartridge pockets with easy access, waterproof and breathable ratings of 3000mm; you can’t go wrong. Since launching the Bonart Men’s Country Clothing range, we have yet to meet a customer who is not entirely satisfied with their chosen country garment.

To view the full range of Bonart Men’s Country Clothing, simply click here. Don’t forget, all Bonart Men’s Country Clothing comes with Free UK Delivery.

Gun Fit: Does your shotgun fit you?

It could be argued that there are very few things in life that are more satisfying than we well fitted shotgun. If you have ever experienced using a shotgun that doesn’t fit, you will know exactly what we mean.

Just what exactly is a fitted gun?

A well fitted shotgun is one that not only just feels right when you hold it, but one that points naturally to where the eye is looking at a given moment. It’s well known that a well fitted shotgun will make a better shooter out of anyone. Not only will a fitted shotgun allow you to hit more targets consistently because of it’s natural ability to point where you are looking, but it will also feel much more comfortable. When people go out and buy a shotgun, they typically discuss it’s gauge features and so forth but rarely is the comfort factor at the top of the agenda if at all.

There are four main variables to a well fitted shotgun and these are: drop (also known as bend), length, cast and finally pitch and grip. There are also other important factors that make up a good gun fit including its balance, trigger resistance and weight amongst others.

Let’s talk about drop

After the rib of the shotgun as been fitted into its position, the amount of drop controls the overall elevation of the shotgun. If the stock of your shotgun is too high, this could result in you sending many pieces of lead (or steel for that matter!) too high above your intended target over and over again. Likewise, if the stock of your shotgun is to low, you will be shooting too low. Not only this, but a low fitted stock can also cause you to shoot both low and high because your head naturally lifts in compensation for the poor gun fit overall. Another interesting point is that a low stock can also encourage your non dominant eye to take over your view of the target because the dominant eye’s view is becomes blocked by the shotgun itself! Given what we have already talked about so far, it’s clear to see that a stock that is fitted a little too high is more ideal than a stock that is a little too low. The best results naturally would be from a stock that is custom to you but these can be expensive. Not all of us can afford custom hand made guns including James. In fact, James more often than not will always choose his Baikal 27 12G Over/Under before picking up anything else simply because he says it feels right.

The drop you will require will be as a result of what you intend to use your shotgun for. In most cases, clay shooters will opt for a drop dimension that will enable them to place approximately 60% of the pattern above the target and the remaining 40% below. Likewise for a game gun, most will prefer a higher shooting gun.

The drop of a shotgun is typically measured at the comb and heel, but sometimes more often than not a ‘drop at face’ measurement is taken. This simply refers to a measurement that is more central overall. A well fitted shotgun will more times than not include both types of drop measuring. If you’re wondering what drop exactly is; it’s the distance between the top of the stock comb and the axis of the tip surface of the rib.

Shotgun Length

The second is arguably a very important shotgun fit factor and that is length. Shotgun length is the distance between the middle of the trigger to the middle of the butt sole. When you opt for a custom made shotgun, both the ideal shotgun length and the ‘heel and toe’ measurement that determines pitch will be measured. One of the first things you naturally learn about when starting out in the shooting sport is the claim that ‘one size does not fit all’ and it couldn’t be closer to the truth. If the stock length is too small, you will note that recoil will be much more pronounced when compared to using a stock with an increase in its length.

At first, it’s really easy to naturally think that all of your guns should therefore have the same length of stock but that’s not always the case. Heavy guns benefit from a shorter stock for easy mounting and overall use. Another point you should think of about is that a game gun for use during the winter months with heavy tweed clothing will benefit from a shorter stock as compared to a clay gun that is used during the warm summer months (if we have any warm summer days here in the UK that is!

Stock Alterations (For Drop and Cast)

Alterations for drop for a good shotgun fit are typically done by placing the shotgun in to a jig and heating the grip area. There are a few ways of doing this but we won’t go into detail about them here. Once the area has come up too an adequate temperature, pressure is then applied in the desired direction. The stock must always be pushed a little further than desired simply because as the wood begins to cool following the conclusion of the alternation process, it has a habit to spring back. Alternatively, drop can also be altered by removing a given amount of wood in the area where it meets the action and also by removing wood from the top of the comb.

The technique for altering cast is different however. Cast in case you don’t know is simply the extent to which the stock is angled to the left, known as cast-on or right, known as cast-off. It is of particular importance to those shooters who do not hold a dominant eye.

Pitch and Grip

Pitch is the length of the stock from the middle of the trigger to the heel and toe. Pitch put simply is the angle of the butt sole relative to the axis of the shotgun rib. Most times, pitch can be measure by simply standing the shotgun up against a straight wall but there are more technical alternatives should you wish. It is possible for pitch to be measured in degrees whilst placed in a specialist jig. The amount of pitch preferred is again as a result of type of shooting that you will be using the given shotgun for. Shotgun fit as we have already mentioned totally depends on what you will be using the shotgun for. A typical skeet gun will have a 2″ pitch down but this can vary depending on individual requirements.

Grip is the last important factor we will talk about today. Grip shape should be in such as way that does not force your wrist to be excessively cocked and should be wide in its circumference. A grip shape that narrows to the front in most cases could be classed as a poor design but again, this is to individual requirements.

A fitted shotgun is just as dangerous as a non-fitted shotgun. It’s important to remember gun safety when handling any shotgun

First things first: A brief introduction

The British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC)

The British Association for Shooting and Conservation, more widely known as BASC for short claim to be the largest, strongest and oldest country shooting organisation in the UK.  The organisation so many of us know and support today was originally founded as the Wildfowler’s Association of Great Britain and Ireland (WAGBI) by both Stanley Duncan FZS and Sir Ralph Payne-Galliwey Bt. The original organisation was formed on the basis that Stanley Duncan believed that the UK required a voice that protected and helped wildfowlers.

Some years later in 1981, WAGBI changed its name to the British Association of Shooting and Conversation (BASC). It was identified that the UK shooting community required a single voice to air its views and opinions. This was to be a strong and unified political voice for shooting providing balanced comments in the media and promoting high standards throughout.

Undoubtedly, BASC continues to grow year-on-year with a membership pool of over 140,000 and it’s clear to see why so many of the shooting community trust and support them. Currently speaking, there are around 110 people working for BASC up and down the UK, promoting and protecting shooting every day.

The Countryside Alliance (CA)

The Countryside Alliance is known predominately for its work supporting country sports and wildlife management but the organisation’s agenda stretches far wider than that. Currently, the Countryside Alliance agenda includes food and farming, local businesses and services and any other issue or interests of country people. The ‘Voice of the Countryside’ as it’s commonly known as was founded in 1997 as an not-for-profit organisation to protect rural interests. Much like BASC, the Countryside Alliance was also formed through a merge of organisations including the British Field Sports Society, The Countryside Business Group and the Countryside Movement.

Since the alliance between these three organisations was formed, the Countryside Alliance has actively campaigned on a number of issues including the 2004 Hunting Act, the closure of rural post offices and improving rural broadband and mobile phone reception, amongst others. At the time of writing this article, the Countryside Alliance has around 100,000 active members.

BASC VS. Countryside Alliance for shooting

Taking into account what we have already talked about, it appears that the British Association of Shooting and Conservation is solely shooting orientated rather than campaigning for the countryside on a whole as the Countryside Alliance does. This is not to suggest that becoming a member of the Countryside Alliance is any better or worse than becoming a member with BASC however. The British Association for Shooting and Conservation and the Countryside Alliance both offer great membership options that are well suited to any person with country and shooting interests.

BASC VS. Countryside Alliance: Basic membership cost

At the time of publishing, the British Association of Shooting and Conservation and the Countryside Alliance both charge £69.00 for a year’s full membership for a single person. The prices then differs after this. For example, if you are interested in joining BASC with a joint membership, it will cost £106 and a family can join for just £147 per year. Whereas if you were joining the Countryside Alliance with a joint membership, it would cost £96.00 and a family membership would cost £115. One note that should be made is that the Countryside Alliance currently offer a 20% discount on their membership fees for the first year and both groups offer a direct debit plan for affordable monthly payments.

BASC VS. Countryside Alliance: What do you get?

What do you get? BASC – The British Association of Shooting and Conservation CA – The Countryside Alliance
Shooting Liability Insurance £10 million for shooting/products £10 million public/products
Employers Liability Insurance £10 million £10 million (For group memberships only)
Personal Accident Insurance £50,000 £30,000
Magazine Bi-monthly BASC magazine Quarterly CA magazine
Access to advice Telephone & Email Telephone & Email

(Note: We believe that all information noted in this article is correct at the time of publish however for up-to date information,  figures and membership benefits, please visit BASC and the Countryside Alliance).

Another factor that you may consider is the British Association of Shooting and Conservation’s gun dog members scheme. The scheme with BASC currently costs £48.00 but the benefits are outstanding. BASC currently has a full-time gun dog team who are on hand to offer help and advice on all aspects which is highly regarded. As part of this membership, you will also receive six copies of Shooting & Conservation magazine a year.

Another great benefit BASC offers is their firearms legal expenses cover. Should the worst happen and you be denied a firearm licence or grant of renewal, BASC will help fight your corner – £100,000 legal expenses for firearm appeals.

Our Conclusion

It’s really hard for us to come up with a straight answer to this. When it comes to the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) Vs. the Countryside Alliance, the simple answer is: they are both great organisations that work hard day in and day out to protect our sport.

It’s clear that BASC leans more towards protecting and campaigning for shooting sports whereas the Countryside Alliance is more of an overall countryside organisation. We don’t feel it’s a question of who is better than the other but more of which organisation suits you best. If you live in the depths of the rural community, then the Countryside Alliance may be more suitable for you since it campaigns for the countryside as a whole including broadband connections! If you are considering joining an organisation that holds shooting at the top of its agenda over anything else, then BASC is defiantly for you.

For us though, we see no reason why you shouldn’t join both BASC and the Countryside Alliance. Regardless of the benefits and membership costs, both organisations exist to protect what we hold so close to our hearts. It’s in our blood, it’s a way of life; It’s shooting. We should hold onto our sport tightly and enjoy every single minute participating in it. BASC and the Countryside Alliance both know this and so our conclusion is just that – if you can afford it, why not consider joining both? Stand together, stand tall and love your sport with your head held high!

For more information regarding the British Association of Shooting and Conservation, please contact them on 01244 573030

For more information regarding the Countryside Alliance, please contact them on 0207 8409300

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Let’s talk about Driven Game Shooting Etiquette

If you’re like any of us here at Guns and Country, when you attend a shoot your going to be feeling a little nervous. This is especially prominent when attending a shoot for the first time – It’s totally normal and expected! It goes without saying that the more shoots you attend, your awareness surrounding game shooting etiquette improves. More than often, you will here both in and out of the field the same question being asked – “Was that my bird?”. We here it time and time again.

As we said just a moment ago, the more shooting you do, the more experienced you become overall. This experience is vital as it allows you to judge certain aspects much more clearer such as range, your birds, your neighbours birds and so on and so forth.

The problem first starts when you arrive at the shoot for the first time. You greet your fellow guns, you socialise and pick pegs. Then you take the walk (or drive) to your peg with your heart beating hoping for a drive that enables you to make clear decisions on which birds are yours, which are not, which ones are safe and which ones are not. Nobody wants to upset the host or the other guns for that matter so it’s important to have some nerves but don’t let it crowd your thinking and overwhelm your day. Even if the worst did happen and you did take a bad shot, provided it wasn’t a dangerous one, you will most likely find that your fellow guns will support you and offer what we like to call, ‘constructive criticism’. That’s not to suggest that you should therefore not bother judging your shot and your target etc. It merely means that if you do make a mistake, don’t worry about it. More importantly, don’t allow the thought of making a mistake throw you off either.

The actual issue starts when you are trying to judge whether a bird is your or not and during that thought process, you hesitate. Typically speaking, when you hesitate at taking a shot, you’re more than likely to injure the bird rather than make a clean kill of it. Good shots typically speaking, don’t hesitate – but this comes with time! If whilst out on a shoot and you become unsure about a bird being yours, or questioning yourself about whether it’s too low or not, it’s much preferred to just leave it. As we just mentioned, you could decide to take the shot and injure the bird which is not welcomed or accepted by the majority of game shooters. It much better and dignified to shoot only what you are comfortable with. If you play it safe, you will not go far wrong.

Another scenario is guns questioning whether a bird they had shot which lands near to a neighbors peg was actually theirs to take in the first place. It makes absolutely no difference where a bird lands after its been shot. Provided you shot the game bird withing approximately twenty degrees of either side of your peg, its yours. This scenario typically occurs with crossing birds, but don’t be put off.

Safety Comes First

Game shooting is just like any other thing we humans do. As humans, we all make mistakes from time to time. That applies to people just starting out to people who have been shooting for years. You are less likely to make mistakes though if you first read your bird and access it however this shouldn’t mean hesitating. It’s just one of those things that comes with practice and time. One thing that should immediately throw you off the idea of taking a shot is one aimed at a low bird. Taking shots at low game birds is not only unsporting and embarrassing, it’s much more than that; It’s dangerous. If you continuously take shots at a low birds, you are more than likely going to be asked to leave and never return. It may sound some what harsh but it’s dangerous. Game shooting and any other form of shooting for that matter is a dangerous sport. It is therefore our responsibility as shooters to make mistakes but learn from them. We’ve heard of some horror stories in the past but they all follow the same pattern of the gun becoming excited.

So what’s our conclusion?

Well, it’s easy to sit here and write about what we feel is right and wrong when we’re not the gun in the field about to take the shot. Therefore our conclusion is going to be based on what we would expect and what the textbook says. Firstly, don’t get yourself all worked up and anxious about taking other peoples birds. If you stick to what looks ok, taking into account the twenty degree either side rule we made mention too earlier, you can’t go far wrong. If you do happen to take a neighbours bird, apologise and learn from it. Our second and most important point is that of low birds. A shoot as a whole will naturally be more lenient with you for accidentally taking the odd shot at a bird that is not yours, provided you don’t continuously do it. What they are most certainly not going to welcome is those guns who take low shots and therefore put people in danger. Keep your gun up and be sporting. If you follow that simple guide, you shouldn’t go too far wrong.

Of course there is also one final point and that is clothing. Take a look at our Men’s Shooting Tweed collection by clicking here. For Ladies Shooting Tweed, just click here. We stock a great range of affordable and branded Shooting Tweed, all with free UK delivery.


How much did you say?

Since Guns and Country launched, we have developed great relationships with suppliers and manufactures that now enable us to offer better deals to our customers. Our latest and most impressive offering so far has to be this Men’s Tattersall Country Shooting Shirt. For the small sum of just £12.50, yes you heard correctly, we will send you a high quality cotton rich Men’s Tattersall Country Shirt straight to your door.

Cheap doesn’t have to mean poor quality

Our Men’s Tattersall Country Shooting Shirt may be on the low side when it comes to cost, but don’t let that make you think it’s a shirt worth steering clear of. This Tattersall Shooting Shirt is made from high quality cotton (100%) and features a classic design including a straight hem and single chest pocket which is ideal for storing smaller items such as your mobile phone.

Our Men’s Tattersall Shooting Shirt is available in the classic colours you would expect with any country shirt including green, red and blue. Needless to say, it can be worn to a formal event such as a shoot or even on a day to day basis.

The designs available

We currently have this Men’s Tattersall Country Shirt available in three different colours; red, green and blue from sizes medium through to extra large.

Red Check Design
(Just £12.50 with Free UK Delivery)

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The Men’s Tattersall Shooting Shirt in this vibrant red colour has to be our best selling design so far. It’s bold, classic and stands out away from the crowd as a statement of it’s own. It does exactly what you would expect a country shirt to do being lightweight and comfortable.

Green Check Design
( Just £12.50 with Free UK Delivery)

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A classic Men’s Tattersall Country Shirt cannot get any more classic than in the colour green. Our second best selling design falls closely behind thanks to its classic country colours that make up the great British countryside as we know it today. Made from high quality cotton (100%), its extremely comfortable to wear and naturally breathable.


Blue Check Design
(Just £12.50 with Free UK Delivery)

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Finally, we have our Men’s Tattersall Shooting Shirt in this impressive blue colouring. Like the two designs above, its extremely comfortable to wear being naturally breathable. The shirt can be worn both in and out of the field and especially goes well with a shooting tie.


So what’s our favourite?

Ok so we’ve had a show of hands here at Guns and Country and it wasn’t exactly a success as each of the designs gained equal votes. Each and every design available for this Men’s Tattersall Country Shirt is impressive and for the price, we recommend all three without a shadow of doubt. They’re extremely comfortable to wear, extremely affordable and easy to clean.

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