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History of Goodwood Shooting

In 1697 the 1st Duke of Richmond & Lennox, the natural son of Charles II, purchased Goodwood House as a hunting lodge from where he could ride out with the nearby Charlton Hunt, one of the most fashionable hunts in the country.

His son, the 2nd Duke of Richmond, was also keen on hunting becoming Master of the Charlton Hunt and building a little hunting lodge at Charlton, designed by the great Lord Burlington.  He commissioned the sporting artist John Wootton to paint six scenes showing his favourite hunters with views of the estate in the background.

The 4th Duke of Richmond was a soldier who was abroad for much of his life, dying of rabies in Canada.  His son, the 5th Duke of Richmond, inherited the vast Gordon estates in Scotland which extended to some 289,000 acres and included the Glenfiddich estate. This coincided with the new fashion among the aristocracy for visiting the Scottish Highlands to shoot and fish.  The 5th and 6th Dukes and their families made regular trips north for the fishing, grouse shooting and deer stalking.

The 7th Duke of Richmond was also a keen shot and photographs show him enjoying the sport both at Goodwood and in Scotland.

From the beginning of the 20th Century Game Books have been kept by family members and it is clear that the rolling Sussex countryside lends itself perfectly for creating some magnificent drives, presenting sporting birds amongst a stunning landscape.

For the past two generations the Dukes of Richmond have let the sporting rights on most of the Estate to tenant farmers and local syndicates. The Molecomb shoot is well known for its pheasant drives in the valleys of Goodwood Park and the Racecourse shoot makes excellent use of the valleys between Goodwood Racecourse, Singleton, Charlton and East Dean to present quality partridge shooting. In recent years ,the Earl of March created the Goodwood Sporting Club and the Racecourse shoot and the Molecomb shoot are now combined to create the ‘Goodwood Shoot’. This shoot presents its guests with some of the most sporting birds in the area set on an estate with excellent dining opportunities. The 91 bedroom hotel is an excellent place to stay over meaning shoots can run to several days.

Call our estate team on 01243 755043 to find out more 

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