Under guidance by the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, The Game Fair will now not take place on the September 2020 dates as planned.
“It is with great regret that I have had to make this decision” said James Gower, Managing Director of the Game Fair. “Nigel Huddleston, MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary at Sport, Heritage and Tourism at the Department, wrote to me to confirm that there was “no guarantee” that the phased reopening would happen in time.
“Without any such guarantee, it is with an extremely heavy heart that we bring have had to take this decision”, added Gower. “But I am pleased to say that the associations and key sponsors when told reacted positively”.
Instead The Game Fair will be rescheduled to take place from 23-25th July 2021 returning to the familiar surroundings of Ragley Hall. Estate Director Charles Granlund comments “We support and understand the difficult decision that the team have had to make, but are excited to welcome The Game Fair family back to Ragley in 2021 and to become its new home for the next five years.
Commenting on the decision not to run in 2020, BASC Chief executive Ian Bell said “We have all been crossing our fingers for good news but it’s clear this will not come in time to guarantee us the outcome we all hoped for.”
“We support entirely The Game Fair’s decision to postpone the event and can confirm that we will be back as the event’s principle partner next year with significant energy and resources to make it the best Game Fair in living memory” said Mr Bell.
Rob Fenwick managing director of E.J.Churchill comments “We will continue to support The Game Fair moving forwards and I fully understand why they have to press pause for 2020. It is a great shame as we look forward to the show every year!
“I have no doubt that the return of The Game Fair in 2021 will be bigger and better than ever before. It is a quality event, something visitors definitely won’t want to miss.”
On behalf of the gun trade Simon West, CEO at the Gun Trade Association said “At times like this we have to accept the disappointment of not getting together to celebrate our wonderful country sports at The Game Fair. That said, enthusiasm next summer will be stronger than ever. Let us make the 2021 Game Fair the greatest of all time!”
Commenting from the HQ in Devon Aboo Cattran said “The Sportsman Gun Centre team is saddened to hear of the postponement of our go-to countryside event. It removes an opportunity for us to all come together as countryside and wildlife-loving folk in celebration of the great British countryside.
“I am, however, confident The Game Fair will return stronger and better in 2021. We, as a business, looking forward to next year and meeting and greeting all of our customers once more at The Game Fair. Here’s to 2021!” added Mr. Cattran.
Since the inaugural event in 1958, The Game Fair has faced many challenges including those from weather, foot and mouth and the financial crisis. “Each time the event bounces back with renewed energy and vigour. It will do so again” said Mr Gower.
“We will be in touch as quickly as we can to communicate your options and next steps. Rest assured we are doing everything we can to ensure a smooth and positive transition to next year. We would like to thank everyone for their cooperation and continued support”.
Tickets for The Game Fair 2021 are on sale now via www.thegamefair.org
Advance tickets for one day cost £29 for an adult and £10 for a child (aged 8 to 16). Advance three-day tickets cost £58 for an adult, £54 for concessions and £20 for children (aged 8-16).