EXCLUSIVE: British firm blasted for selling sick reindeer trophy hunt trips this Christmas

A British company is selling sick reindeer shooting holidays this Christmas.

Hendry, Ramsay & Waters – run by businessman Vernon Waters – boasts that it “is pleased to be able to offer Moose and trophy Reindeer hunting in the North Eastern part of Norway”. The “exclusive” trips would take place during three weeks in late summer.

Outlining the reindeer hunting trips available to buy this Christmas, the company’s website, scothunt.co.uk says: “Only a few licences are available for big males, so this hunt is very exclusive and the season very short.”

The firm does not say how much a trip costs but it is understood to be thousands of pounds. The website says “prices on application” and even suggests to trophy hunters the best type of rifle with which to kill a reindeer.

It goes on: “We have full exclusivity in both the Breheimen and Jotunheimen national parks which holds Europe’s last surviving population of wild Reindeer which have been hunted here since the Ice Age. The Jotunheimen national park reopens this year after being closed to all hunting for the past 8 years so this untouched territory will really be worth a visit. The landscape is breathtaking moorland framed with mountainous peaks and glaziers reaching 2,500 metres above sea level.”

Vernon Waters at the office of Hendry, Ramsay & Waters ( Image: Daily Record)
Vernon Waters at the office of Hendry, Ramsay & Waters ( Image: Daily Record)

Animal rights activists accused the firm of ruining “the spirit of Christmas for children everywhere”. Explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, of the Campaign to Ban Trophy Hunting, said: “This is probably the most un-British thing I have ever heard of. If we needed proof of just how evil trophy hunters really are, then this is surely it.

“These cowards are happy to ruin the spirit of Christmas for children everywhere. How dare they. For a British company to be profiting from this disgrace is beyond appalling. We need a complete ban on this sick industry.”

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Mr Waters, 72, has been “the MD of a sporting agency providing hunting sports globally”, according to his LinkedIn profile. He has held the role since March 2004, according to the website. He was at work in the High Street office of Hendry, Ramsay & Waters in Fife, when our reporter visited this week. Asked if he wanted to comment on the reindeer hunting, he replied: “No, I don’t” before shutting the door.

Contacted by phone by the Mirror today, Mr Waters hung up after our reporter introduced himself.

His company claims to be “Scotland’s premier sporting agency” and even offers to help British trophy hunters with permits so they can take their own rifles through Norway’s airports. Once in the country, the website offers a glimpse of what gun-toting tourists can expect.

“At the Breheimen national, there are two hunting areas: the South East park is our hardest hunting ground and it helps to be in good physical shape as you be hunting in a vast wilderness from our base camp in the mountains, and must be prepared to walk 5 – 15 kms per day, starting with a 2 hour trek (good path) to the comfortable log cabin which will be your base for the duration of the hunt,” it says.

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“The South West hunting area is reached by a boat and is the easier of all hunting areas which includes a cabin in the middle of the Reindeer area which is only about 1 hour easy walking from when you get off the boat. The scenery is simply stunning and really adds to the ambiance of the trip.”

Animal welfare campaigner Peter Egan, who starred in Downton Abbey, said: “Trophy hunters are the lowest of the low, but this really takes the biscuit. British trophy hunters are killing defenceless reindeer for kicks. I feel utterly sick to my stomach at the mere thought of it. Whatever happened to Christmas cheer and the season of goodwill? The best Christmas present the Government could give us is the ban on hunting trophies they’ve been promising for the last four years. Hopefully this scandal will prompt them to get on with it.”

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This article by Ben Glaze was first published by The Mirror on 17 December 2023. Lead Image: Hendry, Ramsay & Waters – run by businessman Vernon Waters – boasts that it “is pleased to be able to offer Moose and trophy Reindeer hunting (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto).

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