Sporting estates across Scotland are being given a new platform to dramatically increase revenues from the country’s global reputation for field sports following the launch of an innovative web-based service by land and property management experts and Mayfair Office members, Bell Ingram.
The Perth-based company, which has around 500,000 hectares under management within its portfolio, promises its Sporting Lets venture helps established sporting estate owners yield greater profits by using Bell Ingram’s 110 years of experience to reach a far greater market at home and abroad.
A specialist team from Bell Ingram, comprising keen sportsmen and women and headed by land agent Charlotte Gilfillan, work with landowners and managers providing stalking, fishing and shooting activities across the country, in a new marketing drive to attract more field sports enthusiasts to their estates.
Charlotte, a graduate of Agricultural College in Aberdeen , has focussed on deer management and spent time as a stalker on Letterewe Estate in Abedeenshire. Afterwhich she become the under-keeper on Glenisla Estate in the Angus Glens where she managed stalking and pheasant shooting, as well as grouse and partridge shooting.
Paul Wakefield, Bell Ingram’s marketing manager, said: “Since we are already extremely well established in sporting estate management and have been offering sport to let since 1899, it made perfect sense for us to take this to the next level.
“Field sports provide a valuable and crucial income to many estates across Scotland, but it is also a very sensitive area. That’s why we have put a lot of time and thought into getting our offering right – and to focus on ensuring our Sporting Lets offer is new and different.
“We are very excited about Sporting Lets and believe it can become the number one choice for estate owners who want to let their sporting facilities and for those who want to take part in the sports.”
Bell Ingram has created a dedicated website www.bellingram.co.uk/sportinglets, which launched on 4 June 2011, that focuses on providing greater and more immediate access and information on sporting estates to enthusiasts.
Paul added: “Traditionally, sporting lets are marketed through a brochure but that can very limiting in its shelf life - a website means we can offer estates an instant platform to reach a wider audience to promote their activities, to offer packages with accommodation or to push special offers more proactively and with more up to date information.
“It means, for example, that an estate that may have vacancies in one area can advertise these instantly to their target audience. I suppose it is similar to the offering that late booking hotel or holiday websites provide to the leisure marketplace. This is bringing the digital marketing age to the traditional sector of fields sports for the first time – but we think it is perfectly suited.”
Charlotte carried out extensive research on the UK’s estate management companies to come up with the model for Bell Ingram.
She added: “Scotland is an extremely popular country in which to experience sports and outdoor activities, with many visitors coming from elsewhere in the UK, Europe and America.
“Our Sporting Lets service will take care of both the estate management for the land owners, while also ensuring visitors have an unforgettable sporting experience. We are sure this service will create new and exciting opportunities and benefits for those involved – and will assist significantly in contributing to Scotland’s economy.
“Our ambition is to be one of the leading providers of Scottish Sport worldwide.”
The 2006 Economic and Environmental Impact of Sporting Shooting report, revealed that nearly half of Britain’s 480,000 shooters came to shoot in Scotland.
The findings, from the Public and Corporate Economic Consultants (PACEC), also showed those visitors accounted for 1.75 million overnight stays and generated £240 million gross value to the Scottish economy.
Established in 1899, Bell Ingram is a multi-disciplined firm of chartered surveyors, forestry managers, estate agents, architects, building surveyors and energy specialists. With more than 130 professional staff across 11 UK offices they provide local knowledge with national coverage.