Press

Press Release Saturday, 23 August 2008

St Hubert Club Qualified Stalker Certificate Gains Forestry Commission Recognition
The Forestry Commission have accepted the new, Lantra accredited St. Hubert Club Qualified Stalker Certificate as proof of stalking competence on its estates. The Commission has confirmed that Club members, holding the Qualified Stalker Certificate, will be recognised nationally as competent and will not be required to hold Wild Deer Management Qualifications Levels 1 and 2 to stalk on any of the Commission’s land. Club Secretary, Trevor Horsefield, commented “This confirms that the Club’s training scheme more than meets the nationally recognised standards required for deer stalkers. Club training has been revised to ensure that National Occupational Standards are met. This, we trust, will ensure that our training will more than satisfy any future government legislation.”

To achieve the St Hubert Club Qualified Stalker Certificate the trainee will have had to:

  • Undergone a minimum of four years supervised, practical and theoretical training, this includes being directly supervised and assessed on all Club stalks for at least two years.
  • Attended a minimum of six training days.
  • Passed annual shooting tests (these continue after qualification).
  • Passed five written examinations (including an external Meat Hygiene Certificate).
  • Culled, gralloched and inspected a minimum of ten deer on Club ground with due regard to safety.
  • Produced a Portfolio to demonstrate all the criteria have been met.  This Portfolio is then subject to rigorous internal and external verification.

The Secretary said
“For the Club this is the ‘icing on the cake’ as we hope that if the Forestry Commission has accepted this award, then all other landowners will follow suit.  The Club will continue with its training development and hopes to forge closer links with other stalking organisations.”

Editors Notes:
“The St. Hubert Club of Great Britain was founded in 1953, in order to create fraternity amongst sportsmen all over the world. Its aim is the conservation and pursuit in a sportsmanlike manner, of all types of game.”

  • This quote is an extract from the manual of The St. Hubert Club of Great Britain and explains the aims and ideals of the Club’s founders when they laid down a training programme for deer stalkers; this training programme is even more relevant today than it was then.
  • The St Hubert Club introduced the first training programme for deer stalkers in the United Kingdom and started training its members in the early sixties.
  • The Club has 350 members and is limited to this number only by virtue of its capacity to give in-depth training to each of its members.
  • The Club’s new ‘Qualified Stalker’ grade is now accredited by LANTRA and accepted nationally as a measure of competence by the Forestry Commission.
  • The Club leases large areas of Forestry Commission land, both in Thetford and in Kielder, where it trains its members together with the management of the deer population.
  • The Club is dedicated to the training of its members, the fraternity of sportsmen and the achievement of the highest standards of deer management and sporting pursuits.
  • A comprehensive induction course is provided to all probationary members to ensure the highest awareness of safety and stalking disciplines before membership is accepted and before any stalking training is undertaken.

Press Release 29th May 2008

St Hubert Club Qualified Stalker Certificate Gains LANTRA Accreditation
The St Hubert Club are proud to announce that their comprehensive deer stalking training scheme has been given approval as a LANTRA Customised Award. The Club’s training scheme has been extensively revised in recent years and the standards have deliberately been set at a high level.  To gain the St Hubert Club Qualified Stalker Certificate the trainee will have: Undergone a minimum of four years supervised, practical and theoretical training, this includes being directly supervised and assessed on all Club stalks for at least two years. Attended a minimum of six training days. Passed annual shooting tests (these continue after qualification). Passed five written examinations (including an external Meat Hygiene Certificate). Culled, gralloched and inspected a minimum of ten deer on Club ground with due regard to safety.  At least four of these culls will have been fully witnessed and assessed by a Club Instructor and all the carcases will have been assessed. Produced a Portfolio to demonstrate all the criteria have been met.  This Portfolio is then subject to rigorous verification. The driving force for seeking external accreditation was the members’ wish to get recognition outside the Club for the training of its members.  Secretary Trevor Horsefield said “We are delighted that The St Hubert Club Training programme has been recognised externally by Lantra Awards.  The programme is a result of a lot of very hard work, all done on a voluntary basis, by members of the Club and we are justly proud of our achievements.”  There was no external pressure for the Club to undertake this and there is no desire for the Club to enter into any form of competition with other qualifications. The award is not intended as a professional qualification, but from the start the National Occupational Standards were used to provide the basis of the course covering the elements in deer management, stalking, culling and preparing deer for human consumption.

Release issued to :
Shooting Gazette, Shooting Sports, Shooting Times, Sporting Shooter, Blaze Publishing Limited, The Field, Telegraph Media Group, Country Landowner, Forestry & Timber News, Archant, BDS Deer Magazine, NFU Countryside, Game and Wildlife Trust

Editors Notes:
“The St. Hubert Club of Great Britain was founded in 1953, in order to create fraternity amongst sportsmen all over the world. Its aim is the conservation and pursuit in a sportsmanlike manner, of all types of game.”

This quote is an extract from the manual of The St. Hubert Club of Great Britain and explains the aims and ideals of the Club’s founders who laid down a training programme for deer stalkers; this training programme is even more relevant today than it was then. It was the first formal training programme ever to have been adopted in the British Isles and has formed the base of the others that have followed. LANTRA are the Sector Skills Council for the environmental and land based sector and they state “we help our industries perform to World Class Standards”. As the Club wished to demonstrate a nationally recognised level of competence, it set out with the National Occupational Standards firmly in focus and worked with LANTRA to develop its training programme. LANTRA were the facilitators for the Game, Fish and Deer Committee which established the National Occupational Standards for this sector and they were represented on this Committee by the external verifier for our Certificate.  In addition the Club was represented by one of our members, so there is a strong link with the development and implementation of National Occupational Standards. This external verifier has inspected the Club’s procedures, attended the Club’s training course and examined portfolios, making very positive comments on our standards. Also as part of the course, trainees have to pass a Level 2 Certificate in Wild Game Meat Hygiene where the examination is set and marked by LANTRA. If it were appropriate, you would be welcome to send a member of your staff to join the members on their next training day on the 18th October. Here you would experience all aspects of the in-depth training and testing given, at all levels, by our instructors. I also enclose the Club ‘flyer’ and a copy of a summary of the Training Programme that we give to all new recruits detailing their route of progress to achieve Qualified Stalker status.


Press Release 9th May 2008

Training for Wild Boar Hunters
The St Hubert Club of Great Britain is to set up the UK’s first formal training course for wild boar hunters in response to the Defra Wild Boar Action Plan that highlights the importance of voluntary regulation for the control of wild boar. The Club’s survey of the opinion of its members revealed great enthusiasm for wild boar shooting; a pool of experience, much gained in other EU states; concern over policy and animal welfare issues, as well as a willingness to undertake additional training.

The Club Chairman told Shooting Times: “The requests for instruction and updating on wild boar management mean that we will be expanding our technical training provision, drawing on expertise both within the Club and through our contacts in Europe to ensure that our members are at the forefront with regard to field-based knowledge and skills. There is more to the management of wild boar than meets the eye and any control plans may need to reflect the objectives of a range of interests in the countryside”.