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36

CRAFTSMANSHIP We arrive at Holkham Hall, seat of the Earl of Leicester, in late October. It’s rutting season amongst the estate’s 400-odd fallow and red deer. A low sun enflames autumn leaves. Pheasant and partridge browse in the long grass beneath the trees and the steady calm of the high season’s end has descended. Visitors will not return until Easter and the estate’s five gamekeepers – led by headkeeper Kevan McCaig – are readying themselves for the shooting season. Some 40 shoots will take place through the winter months at this renowned estate – the site of the first recorded driven shoot. THE PERFECT COMPANION According to the annals, the Earl’s gamekeepers arranged for A single piece of French walnut game fowl to be driven into the is used for all the woodwork in a small copse of Scarborough Clump Holland & Holland Range Rover. in 1877. After lunch, the Earl and This ensures that every veneer his guests went out and bagged matches perfectly. It’s then polished the birds as the beaters drove them to resemble the oil-finished stock into the air. Today, McCaig and his of a Holland & Holland shotgun. team focus on sustainable practices It’s just one bespoke element of that ensure the entire biodiversity this Land Rover Special Vehicle of the estate can thrive – alongside Operations project that pairs two a healthy population of game birds companies with a rich heritage and and deer. It’s a very intimate job. commitment to craftsmanship. It’s The team is close knit and stewards only natural, then, that they should its environment with studied care. have come together to collaborate Early on the morning we on the perfect sportsman’s vehicle. arrive, with the mist still clinging to the hollows by the lake’s shore, McCaig has the unhappy task of pulling two red deer stags from the water. They had locked antlers in a tussle during the night, couldn’t separate themselves and dragged each other down. It is a tragic accident, the first of its kind that McCaig has encountered. He is an inscrutable Scot from the Dumfries and Galloway coast who has worked the estates at Alnwick Castle and Sandringham. His gamekeeping is highly regarded. He has led royalty on shoots and his knowledge of partridge rearing is award winning. The loss of two stags can be disruptive to the herd. Each male has his place in the hierarchy and during 37

 

Land Rover Magazine

 

Land Rover Magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go Above and Beyond.

In this issue, New Defender is put through its paces by two inspirational young adventurers as they prepare for an expedition to the South Pole. We also celebrate 50 years of Range Rover by taking a journey of discovery to Dubai. As well as looking back, we look to future as a group of visionaries explain the technologies that could change the future for all of us.

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