Last week we blogged about North Yorks gamekeeper Shaun Leslie Allanson, who was convicted of committing wildlife crimes on the Blansby Park Estate (see here). We wondered at the time whether Allanson was a member of the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation (NGO), the English/Welsh equivalent of the Scottish Gamekeepers’ Association.
Well, it turns out that he was indeed a member at the time he commited those offences.
In a very welcome turn of events, the NGO have issued a public statement about Allanson (see here). Following his conviction, they immediately ‘suspended’ his NGO membership. Now, this isn’t as good as immediately booting him out and banning him from ever re-joining the organisation, but it is a good start.
According to the NGO’s disciplinary procedure (see here), Allanson will remain suspended until the NGO’s National Committee have a chance to meet and discuss the details of his case, and based on that meeting he will either be expelled or re-admitted. We will watch with interest to see what decision they make.
The NGO deserve some credit here. Regular blog followers will know that after previous cases of convicted gamekeepers we have struggled to get the relevant ’professional body’ (i.e. the NGO or the SGA) to make any public comment at all. On this occasion though, the NGO took very swift public action without us having to spend weeks badgering them to do so. We blogged quite recently about the need for greater leadership amongst the game-shooting bodies and it looks as though the message has finally got through, to the NGO at least. They don’t often give us cause to congratulate them but this time they have. Well done to them.