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Steel proofed Side By Sides…

Set for the future of Game Shooting

26 August 2020

Written by: Mark Osborne


With the potential lead ban looming, it leaves the traditional game shot at a bit of a crossroads, especially if they are in the market for a new gun. Game shooting as a sport is built on tradition, from the clothes we wear in the field to the layout of the day, the customs we follow and even the terminology used. For many shooters the day is less about the actual shots fired and more about the experience of being outdoors in picturesque countryside, indulging in fine hospitality, sharing sporting adventures with fellow guns and the pure enjoyment of shooting a traditional, beautiful shotgun.

The majority of heritage game guns are Side By Sides with 65mm chambers, as it is only reasonably recently that Over & Unders have become entirely accepted on the peg. This, of course, is a good thing. So long as the gun and cartridges used are safe and suitable to shoot with the intended quarry, then shooters should be able to enjoy whichever guns they prefer, from century old muzzleloaders and hammer guns to modern OU Sporters.

However, the voluntary transition away from lead in game shooting has brought to the forefront deep concerns, that many traditionalists have been harbouring for a while now, about whether they will be able to enjoy shooting their guns in seasons to come. The current climate is full of uncertainties with cartridge manufacturers doing their best to create, or at least improve, possible lead alternatives, but it is looking increasing likely that steel shot may be the go-to for the majority of shooters.

This is something we feel that we can help with…

Having older guns re-proofed for High Performance steel cartridges is, although a possibility, highly risky and certainly not an option for all guns. However, our sister company, William Powell, have created two new guns that encompass the traditional beauty and elegance of heritage game guns. Designed with the help of time honoured, highly skilled craftsmen and built using the latest technology, these guns merge appearance, handling and heritage with the latest machining techniques to bring to life the next generation of Side By Sides… High Performance steel shot proofed.

The perfect partner in the field for the traditional game shot…

The Sovereign and the Viscount are designed here in the UK by William Powell and a team of artisan craftsmen. Working in partnership with Battista Rizzini, they are then built in Italy using modern production techniques. With 3 inch chambers in 12 and 20 bore, both of these exceptional guns are High Performance steel shot proofed, capable of shooting high birds with the latest cartridges in heavy loads and still handling effortlessly. Available with fixed chokes of ½ and ½, or altered to suit the customers preferred choking dimension (multi chokes also available) the Sovereign and the Viscount are future proof, fit for purpose through the ever-changing landscape of the shooting industry.

The Sovereign features deep cut Celtic scrollwork on the sideplates, whilst the Viscount is decorated by delicate rose and scroll engraving. Stocked with high quality walnut, oil finished and fitted specifically to the shooter, both of these guns, although different in appearance, offer the best of both worlds – traditional beauty with modern strength – and may just bridge the gap through the current transition in the game shooting world.

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