Rooker's revision for outdated game laws

Proposals to reform existing "outdated" and "irrelevant" game laws have been announced by the minister for sustainable food and farming, Lord Rooker, in a bid to bring regulations on licensing into line with modern times.

The proposed legislation, which was announced by the minister at the CLA Game Fair, aims to abolish the need for those who sell and deal in game to require licences.

Rooker said: "We don't need laws that were originally intended to stop peasants killing pheasants. The countryside has moved a long way since then, and many people in both urban and rural England and Wales would like to sell or eat game. These proposals remove an unnecessary burden from shoots and retailers alike, making it easier for people throughout the country to buy local game."

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) and the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC), have been calling for game licensing laws to be changed.

Andrew Opie, BRC's director of food policy, said: "Retailers suffer thousands of pounds of administrative costs applying for licenses and coping with inconsistent local authority enforcement. Scrapping the licence would save that unnecessary expenditure and broaden choice for customers."

David Fursdon, CLA president said: "The removal of these outdated laws affecting shooting shows that the government takes both shooting and the wider game industry seriously, and that the announcement takes place at the CLA Game Fair highlights the significance of the announcement to all people interested in country sports. I am pleased that the government had chosen to retain the basic anti-poaching provisions in the Game Acts, a measure the CLA pressed for."