TOM TURNBULL has been elected chairman of the Association of Deer Management Groups (ADMG), taking over the reins from retiring chair, Richard Cooke.

Mr Turnbull is owner, land manager, farmer and stalker of the Strone Estate, Argyll, at the head of Loch Fyne. With a background in estate management and sporting agency, he is a former chair of the Inveraray and Tyndrum Deer Management Group and has been ADMG vice chairman for three years. He was elected at the association’s online AGM on June 23, 2021 after Richard Cooke stepped down, following 10 years in post as chairman, and prior to that 17 years as the association’s secretary.

Commenting on his new post, Mr Turnbull said: “In taking over the helm of ADMG I am strongly aware of the challenges that we face. I believe that Deer Management Groups have never been a more vital component in the land management of our uplands – indeed, DMGs are probably the best example of collaborative land management at landscape scale in Scotland with a crucial part to play as we tackle the climate emergency," he continued. "ADMG’s role is also as important as ever as we work with Scottish Government, its agencies and land managers across the uplands in ensuring that the outcomes of the Deer Working Group report as implemented on the ground are sensible, workable, and take account of the interests of all involved.”

Mr Cooke has taken on the post as ADMG vice-chairman, a position formerly held by Mr Turnbull.

“I am proud to have been associated with this period of tremendous change across Scotland’s deer sector," said Mr Cooke. "I am convinced that stalking as many of us think of it will continue to have its place in this fast changing and more complex world, albeit perhaps on a different scale. Adapt we must, but equally we must hold on to the traditions and values of our past. With Tom taking ADMG forward I have every confidence that the leadership of our sector is in safe hands,” he concluded.