Sporting Rights

nun_hunter

Well-Known Member
This is more of a what if question as I'm not currently looking to obtain sporting rights but it's something I'd consider in the future if it came up at a sensible price.

The question is what can a landowner do (or more importantly a new landowner) to their property that would adversely affect the sporting rights but be legal. For example the new owner is anti shooting so they decide to deer fence their land to protect woods/crops thereby removing all deer from the land?

What protection as the owner of sporting rights do you have?
 

rodp

Well-Known Member
I would imagine a new anti shooting landowner would have the choice of a multitude of things he could do. Let his dogs roam free, drive around the land regularly making as much noise as possible, open the grounds to walkers, erect fences, let the land out for events ???
 

levigsp

Well-Known Member
So it all depends on how the sporting right lease is worded.
If its worded correctly, the owner of the land is not allowed to do anything that will detract from the sporting rights, eg disturbing birds etc.
 

Pedro

Well-Known Member
I guess the problem with upsetting the holder of sporting rights by an occupier could have negative effects for the owner. It's astonishing how many foxes can be seen and have to be shot at right at the edge of the field where the house is at 2am, without a moderator.

I'm not really a fan of land ownership and sporting rights being separated. I understand why it has come about that this happens, but I expect there are many examples of where it is not good for either party.
 

rodp

Well-Known Member
So it all depends on how the sporting right lease is worded.
If its worded correctly, the owner of the land is not allowed to do anything that will detract from the sporting rights, eg disturbing birds etc.

Can't see the sporting rights being allowed to interfere with the land owners living though. He could suddenly decide that he needed to undertake various activities in order to make a living ?
Guess work above, but can more or less guarantee no good will come of it.
 

nun_hunter

Well-Known Member
This is why i can't really see the benefits of buying sporting rights. Leasing them so you know you're on the same page as the land owner but if that changes then it's better to be able to see out the lease or end it prematurely rather than be stuck with sporting rights you can't really utilise.
 

Pedro

Well-Known Member
It all came about when big landowners had to sell much of their land to make ends meet for the tax man, death duties and all that but wanted to keep the sporting rights for the land they sold. A recipe for disaster I should say in a lot of instances. I guess it's okay, say if you have a shoot and it's acquired some of the sporting rights for land around it, for example to stand guns in and to beat over, but generally, you've got two differing land users pulling in different directions.
 
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paul dillon

Well-Known Member
I also believe that even if the sporting rights are separate the land owner still has the right to the vermin control to protect his stock and crop (i.e. rabbits, foxes & pigeons ect!)
 

sikamalc

Administrator
Site Staff
Much depends on how and what is included in the " sporting rights". Sporting rights are often completely separate from any other rights. A lease is normally slightly different in my experience, in that the deer or game rights are leased over a year, two year or sometimes 5 year lease, with usually a caveat put in that providing both parties do not cause any issues, it also normally says this is not transferable.

Sporting rights are often kept when a farm is sold off, the rights to take game are still held by the original owner. Or you will have a large estate with farming tenants on it, but they have no rights to the deer /game on the farm as the sporting rights are held by the estate.
Sporting rights I assume can be transferred if applicable in the agreement. BUT I am know solicitor or specialist land agent, so may well be blowing smoke up my .....

All the leases I have dealt with over the years have always been private leases with estates. The wording all varies, but you had better read it closely to make sure you are happy with the contents otherwise you could come unstuck. You will often find such things as damage to crops, fences, watercourses by you or even by the amount of deer could lead to your paying for the damage. Penalty clauses are also something I have dealt with on one major estate I dealt with some years back. However none of this ever came into force as the cull was always completed on time over the 12 years that I held the lease.
 

bogtrotter

Well-Known Member
Much depends on how and what is included in the " sporting rights". Sporting rights are often completely separate from any other rights. A lease is normally slightly different in my experience, in that the deer or game rights are leased over a year, two year or sometimes 5 year lease, with usually a caveat put in that providing both parties do not cause any issues, it also normally says this is not transferable.

Sporting rights are often kept when a farm is sold off, the rights to take game are still held by the original owner. Or you will have a large estate with farming tenants on it, but they have no rights to the deer /game on the farm as the sporting rights are held by the estate.
Sporting rights I assume can be transferred if applicable in the agreement. BUT I am know solicitor or specialist land agent, so may well be blowing smoke up my .....

All the leases I have dealt with over the years have always been private leases with estates. The wording all varies, but you had better read it closely to make sure you are happy with the contents otherwise you could come unstuck. You will often find such things as damage to crops, fences, watercourses by you or even by the amount of deer could lead to your paying for the damage. Penalty clauses are also something I have dealt with on one major estate I dealt with some years back. However none of this ever came into force as the cull was always completed on time over the 12 years that I held the lease.
As posted here, also with most leases the landowner will maintain the right to cull deer, should you fail to reach agreed cull figures.

0n a yearly lease its normal to agree to an annual increase of rent on renewal, expect around 2% per annum.

While it can never be guaranteed such agreements make it more likely that your lease will be renewed.
 

CharlieT

Well-Known Member
The owner of sporting rights has, in law, recourse to sue a landowner for compensation if he can prove that alterations to land useage has been substantial enough to interfere with the sporting rights.

Clear felling a covert, non agricultural development are things that spring to mind. Deer fencing the whole farm/estate would be a no, no, but deer fencing new planting would be acceptable.

Also, just remember that there are subtle differences between sporting rights and shooting rights. The first covers most things from hunting through shooting, falconry and fishing whereas shooting rights is just that, the right to shoot deer and game.

The most important thing is to read the small print and know what you're buying into.
 

nun_hunter

Well-Known Member
Thanks for the input. I was interested as it would be possible to have a land user and owner with completely different views and therefore cause issues and what protection each would have from the other. Seems a lease would be a safer option as it allows the option to end it if things go bent.
 

levigsp

Well-Known Member
Much depends on how and what is included in the " sporting rights". Sporting rights are often completely separate from any other rights. A lease is normally slightly different in my experience, in that the deer or game rights are leased over a year, two year or sometimes 5 year lease, with usually a caveat put in that providing both parties do not cause any issues, it also normally says this is not transferable.

Sporting rights are often kept when a farm is sold off, the rights to take game are still held by the original owner. Or you will have a large estate with farming tenants on it, but they have no rights to the deer /game on the farm as the sporting rights are held by the estate.
Sporting rights I assume can be transferred if applicable in the agreement. BUT I am know solicitor or specialist land agent, so may well be blowing smoke up my .....

.
I believe that You are correct Malc on both counts, I know that I have the sporting rights over some bits of land and I could transfer them to others if I so wished, my leases I could not.
 

CharlieT

Well-Known Member
I believe that You are correct Malc on both counts, I know that I have the sporting rights over some bits of land and I could transfer them to others if I so wished, my leases I could not.
You are correct, in fact it is possible to register sporting rights (on registered land) with the land registry. They may be sold, leased or indeed given away by their owner.
 

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