Scottish countryside workers need support

Scottish countryside workers need support. Scotland’s countryside has been under scrutiny and attack, and countryside workers have felt threatened, and demonised. The attacks on countryside occupations are multifaceted. There’s the publication of misinformation. Bile spewed out across social media. It all has a direct impact on our gamekeepers, stalkers and ghillies. This may cause gamekeepers and deerstalkers to feel isolated. Furthermore, it would be called bullying if professional occupations in other sectors were targeted in the same way. That’ll do.


Gamekeeping, deer stalking and river ghilling are jobs people love. Men and women followed their hearts into a career often chosen at an early age. Some followed family traditions and became part of the next generation. They progressed through colleges, grew their knowledge and gained valuable work experience.

Traditional countryside roles

Scotland’s traditional countryside jobs do not attract large salaries. There are no lofty climbs up the career path. It is nothing like the corporate world, eased along with hefty benefit packages. Hands-on, traditional countryside roles are a way of life. All year round jobs with no half measures, connected to the land, and devoted to the flora and fauna. Scottish countryside workers need support.

People trample over the countryside

Annually, thousands of people trample over the countryside, treating our vast wild landscapes and rural workers with disdain. Paths are worn out, roads and verges damaged, dumped rubbish and camp fires scar beauty spots. Gates are left open, wildlife is disturbed, harassed, poached and killed. Yet, the countryside workers clear up the carnage. They right the wrongs. Sadly, the work they do rarely makes the headlines. That’ll do.

Countryside workers are quiet natured

Gamekeepers, deerstalkers and ghillies are easy to attack and blame. As quiet natured folk, they don’t spend their working days taking part in rehearsed TV interviews. Countryside workers do not spend their time tucked up in a cosy offices writing articles, posting and sharing on social media. You’ll find them out working in the hills.

Let’s champion our countryside workers

‘That’ll do…’ perhaps this is the time for the brewing anger of the countryside to be turned into action? To transform, rise anew and champion our countryside workers and all that they do. Let’s celebrate!

Find your community with The Scottish Gamekeepers Association, join here.

Looking for help and support, visit the Gamekeepers Welfare Trust

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