Simon Whitehead and his Pakefield Ferrets
The UK’s Premier Ferreting Demonstration & Display
Throughout the Spring and Summer, Simon and his Pakefield Ferrets can be seen and heard across the length and breadth of the UK where during the busy show season demonstrating and displaying at over thirty events from The Game Fair, education days to other country shows, fêtes and open days.
Simon is a unique character in modern day Britain, if not the world. He is one of a small band of people that make their entire living from rabbits in all of their guises. He is a traditional rabbit manager, author of many books including ‘Pugs and Drummers’ and the acclaimed ‘Ahead of the Game’, a book on the history, harvest, preparation and cooking of wild rabbit.
Experience and enjoyment forms the provenance of his demonstrations. Simon has a unique arena demonstration and educationally and amusing are just two words used to describe how he sells the virtues of the full mechanics of ferreting to the wider world whilst enticing them into his world of ferrets, dogs and rabbits.
Simon has demonstrated at all the major UK events and currently performs at over thirty plus shows. From a village green to The Game Fair and in-between, Simon’s arena demonstrations are ranked amongst the most entertaining and popular on the UK show circuit. His shows are constantly evolving and now Simon has incorporated his dogs, and this has taken the already popular demonstration to a new level.
Thirty minutes of education, amusing action packed unscripted drama that blossoms as he regales both his and the ferrets journey. Often copied but never bettered, this demonstration by a team who earn their living “rabbiting” is an unequalled demonstration amongst the arena events across the UK. Simon definitely puts the “ferret” back into ferreting.
Not content with supplying a first-class act in the arena he also delivers a static display of some note. Through his static display, Simon educates the world about the ferret, rabbit and how the entwined relationship between the two has played out throughout our history. Publication quality photographs, illustrations and a TV screen illustrate the craft he relies on to provide food, shelter and clothing for his family. In short, the art of ferreting and the welfare of working ferrets is explained in full.
To add some variety into his world of demonstrations, Simon now performs a butchery and rabbit cooking demonstration. This starts off with a masterclass in rabbit butchery and climatizes in a delicious meal enticing the audience to try rabbit.
In-between demonstrations Simon, his ferrets and dogs are on hand for interaction with the public and as popular the arena demonstrations are, the static display is always a hive of activity as they are many questions to be answered, ferrets to be held and stories to be told.
As ferreting is normally carried out in unsociable surroundings and often in solitude, Simon uses the arena demonstrations and static display to explain and illustrate why ferreting in the true sense of the word with ferreter, their ferret’s, dog and nets are fast becoming a more sought after figure in the countryside and towns of the UK. The ferreter is the epitome of the organic and environmentally friendly hunter/gatherer and as such a supplier of first class organic, free range meat for the table.
Throughout the UK, at whatever event, the audience are enthralled and become a part of the scene set by Simon as he illustrates how and why the team work together in a simulated day ferreting that has to be seen to be believed. Appreciating the bond that unites the ferreter with his dog and ferrets along with their knowledge of the natural world and fieldcraft enables them to become a part of nature as opposed to an intruder.
Enthusiastic, energetic, amusing, educational, unforgettable, all descriptions of his commentary as he gets the audience to watch the ferreter work in tune with his animals. The world is moving on, technology is changing our society, but it is refreshing to find Simon trying to not only make people realise and understand why we ferret but more importantly, get newcomers into the countryside to continue such a fine tradition.
A raconteur of some repute, Simon can display, demonstrate and educate this traditional craft that has survived the growth in technology, showing why the Pakefield Ferrets motto of “ensuring the tradition of ferreting IS continued for further generations” is long remembered after the show has closed.
For some events and organisers they like the fact that I can provide my own marquee, arena and pa system for my demonstrations.
If you would like more details about Simon’s availability in 2024 for your event, please contact Simon on 07766 168817 or via e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org