'Pheasants for Presents' Going from Strength to Strength

>> 29 December 2016

Now in its third year, Aboyne, Upper Deeside & Donside Councillor Geva Blackett’s ‘Pheasants for Presents’ initiative is covering an even larger area than her 800 sq mile ward and stretches from Strathdon and Braemar in the west to Blairs in the east

Setting up partnerships with local estates and Tesco, the now annual Christmas event makes sure vulnerable people in the area have food on their table and wood on their hearths plus some extras for pets and children from Tesco.

Councillor for Aboyne, Upper Deeside & Donside Geva Blackett said

“Many people are feeling the pincers of austerity through absolutely no fault of their own and with so many job losses in the oil industry this year we are seeing even more folk facing a bleak winter – I just want to make sure that on what is meant to be a happy time for people, I can do a bit to help out.”

This year’s partnership includes Balmoral estate who give logs and fresh vegetables from HM the Queen’s garden, Dunecht estates have donated venison, Invercauld estate have provided the pheasants and also partridge, Sheridan’s the Ballater butcher did the meat preparation while Tesco in Banchory and the Lang Stracht have joined forces to make sure there are crackers on the table, mince pies in the oven and even food for pets

Alex Hogg, Chairman of The Scottish Gamekeepers Association said:

“It is good to see the Pheasants for Presents initiative run again. SGA members have been involved since the first year, helping to source the game which I am sure will be much appreciated. Councillor Blackett deserves credit for starting what is a very positive initiative and all those assisting are playing their part in something very worthwhile at a time of year which can carry its own pressures but clearly demonstrates the community spirit in Scotland's rural communities."

Aaron Philip, Manager of Tesco in Banchory said

“I am extremely supportive of this initiative because I know that everything that is donated goes directly to those who need it.”

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