Following the conviction this week of gamekeeper Glenn Brown on the National Trust’s Howden Moor in the Upper Derwent Valley, Derbyshire, the sporting tenant has been named on the Birdguides website as Geoff Eyre (scroll to the comments section under the article).
According to The Moorland Association website, Geoff Eyre won the 2005 Purdey Award for Game and Conservation, for his Howden Regeneration Project. (As an aside, scroll down the page to see another 2005 Purdey Award winner, head gamekeeper Jimmy Shuttlewood from the Snilesworth Estate North Yorkshire – who was later convicted in 2008 with two underkeepers for the use of cage traps to capture birds of prey – story here).
Geoff Eyre has had a lot written about his pioneering work to restore Howden Moor to its former glory as a viable grouse moor. Here in 2006 he spoke about the ‘beneficial’ work of his gamekeeper. Also in 2006, this article was written in The Telegraph about the return and then subsequent loss of a pair of hen harriers on Howden Moor. In 2007, he hosted a visit by a DEFRA Minister for Landscape and Rural Affairs, reported here in The Shooting Times, accompanied by gamekeeper Glenn Brown (see photo). The Minister was impressed with what he saw, calling the project an ‘inspiration’ and a good use of public money.
One can only assume that Geoff Eyre was completely unaware of the criminal activities of his gamekeeper. You can ask him about it, and whether Brown has been sacked, at National Trust activity days in September 2011 – details here.