Hosting the first GWCT Welsh Game Fair for three days in September will be a dream come true for the owner the famous Vaynol Estate, near Bangor.

The initial contact with James Gower, managing director of Stable Events Ltd, to explore the possibility of creating a Welsh Game Fair at the Vaynol Estate was made by Hugh Edwin Jones, head of events at Gwynedd Council.

As Keith Jones and his father, Myfyr, owners of the estate, were visiting the Scottish Game Fair in Perth, a meeting was organised with James and the rest is now history

From September 9-11, Keith’s dream will become a reality when James, whose company organises The Game Fair at Ragley Hall, Warwickshire and The GWCT Scottish Game Fair at Scone Palace, Perthshire, and his team stage their first event in Wales in partnership with The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT).

“It’s fantastic news because we have trying to get the game fair here for a long time,” said Keith. “It just so happened that James had already been talking about holding a Welsh Game Fair when we met with him.

“The Vaynol Estate is made for the game fair and we need an event like this in North Wales. I’m very passionate about shooting, fishing and the countryside.”

Keith has also recently opened a new gunroom at Vaynol Hall, which has a much improved offering than a smaller previous venture in Caernarfon.

“There has been an organised shoot at Vaynol since at least the 1850s and the estate is a perfect setting,” added Keith.

In addition to being an event venue, Vaynol also has a herd of pedigree Hereford cattle. On the events side, the estate has hosted Bryn Terfel’s Faenol Festival and Radio 1’s Big Weekend in the past and Keith is hoping to resurrect a Stereophonics concert that was cancelled due to the pandemic two years ago.

James is equally delighted to be holding the first GWCT Welsh Game Fair – – at Vaynol Estate. “Wales has some of the UK’s most beautiful countryside which is home to people passionate about the landscape, conservation and the country pursuits taking place within it,” he said.

“It’s high time we shone a spotlight on the Welsh countryside and this event, in the magnificent setting of Vaynol Estate, is the perfect way to do it.”

Leading Welsh celebrity chef and author Bryn Williams will be leading the culinary charge at the GWCT Welsh Game Fair, creating a bespoke menu for guests in a VIP Enclosure Restaurant – aptly named The White Park Restaurant after the famous Vaynol Cattle – and taking part in live, open-air cooking demonstrations throughout the weekend. Clogau Gold is sponsoring the VIP Enclosure and White Park Restaurant.

A keen shooter and novice fly fisherman, Bryn who comes from a farming background and is now the chef patron of Odette’s in Primrose Hill and at Porth Eirias, a beach-front restaurant, café and bar at Colwyn Bay.

The GWCT Welsh Game Fair will raise money to support the GWCT’s charitable work and give a welcome boost to the region, with tourism and visitors contributing to the local economy.

Fishing, clay shooting, gundogs, game cookery, falconry, horses and hounds, as well as rural crafts, food and drink will feature at the event, which is expected to attract people passionate about the countryside, country pursuits and conservation.

Visitors can look forward to a wide range of attractions, displays, live debates, shopping at hundreds of trade stands and family entertainment, all with a countryside theme.

A Clay Shooting Line and Gunmakers’ Row, both extremely popular elements of the Scottish and National Game Fairs, will feature alongside a wealth of Welsh produce.

The event is set to be a fantastic shop window for the Welsh countryside and will promote the unique culture and heritage of Wales. It will also bring together representatives from a range of conservation, farming, field sports and fishing bodies for debates on Welsh rural issues.

The aim is to foster greater communication and co-operation between sectors and promote the benefits of country pursuits and conservation to a wider audience.

Picture caption:

Keith Jones in one of his gunrooms at Vaynol Hall.