Sport’s economic boost to area

The opening of the grouse shooting season on Monday (13 August) heralds the start of a sporting tradition with a proven record of providing economic, social and environmental sustainability for rural communities, says the CLA in the North.

As the Olympic Games winds down, the starting pistol will give way to the sporting gun across the region’s moorlands - the bulk of which lie within key tourist areas of North Yorkshire, Lancashire’s Trough of Bowland, Peak District, Northumberland and the Cumbria/County Durham borders.

CLA North Director of Policy and Public Affairs Douglas Chalmers said: “Just as the £9 billion investment made by the country in the Olympic Games will provide long term benefits for otherwise disadvantaged areas and communities, grouse shooting pours tens of millions of pounds of private money into the North every year.

“Much of this money goes into the management of the moors and paying for the full and part- time staff who work there. The rest is spent during the season in hotels, restaurants, bed and breakfasts, shops and garages – supporting businesses and jobs and insulating them against less busy months.

“At a time when low confidence is damaging the rural economy, the income generated by shooting creates vital economic activity that will help cultivate the green shoots of growth.”

The grouse shooting industry generates over £67 million for England’s rural economy and supports over 1,500 full time equivalent jobs. The grouse shooting season usually begins on the “glorious twelfth” but game cannot be shot on Sunday, which means it gives way to the thirteenth this year.