There is some eye-catching engraving on some of the rifles coming through at the moment. What are your current favourites and do you have an all-time favourite?
We’re currently working on some spectacular deep relief engraved double rifles. One features a buffalo skull across the fences on top of the action and we’ve just finished a similar rifle with a agali (mountain sheep) in the same place. Those are pretty incredible and they’re certainly pushing the boundaries of what’s been done before. That’s what gets the guys really excited – trying new things.
In terms of favourite engraving of all time… the guys have done so many amazing guns in recent years it’s difficult to pick one. Each gun is unique – no two are the same. When you pick them up, you can really feel that and it’s something we really want to continue here: the customers that own these rifles will own something which no one else has. It’s therefore very difficult to pick one stand out favourite. They’re all my favourites! There’s so much passion and soul that goes into each of them.
What have been the highlights for you during this challenging year?
The incredible support from our client base and our friends all around the world. People have got behind us in so many ways, from crates of beer turning up here, to people saying good on you for how we handled lockdown when we lived here. It’s been amazing, and I don’t just mean on a personal level, but also in terms of the business: people are still stepping up and continuing to order lots of guns, which keeps everything ticking here.
Of course, along with the amazing reaction from the global Rigby community, there’s been the team. I know I say it all the time, but I’m so, so proud of them and what they’ve done here. It has been their finest hour without question. You can always look at any situation from two angles and it’s your choice whether you want to look at it as a negative or a positive. Covid has been very challenging for so many people all around the world but you’ve got to take what you can from it and we’re just so blessed with the people we have here.
What can we look forward to seeing from Rigby in 2021?
We’ll be bringing you photos of the new falling block, which is well underway now and looks spectacular. There’s also the new 28-bore Rising Bite shotgun, which looks beautiful. We’ll have some of those ready for the middle of next year. We’ve also got some other interesting projects quietly working in the background, but you’ll hear more about those later.
Do you have any New Year’s resolutions for Rigby and for yourself?
For the company, not really. I’m so pleased with what everyone’s doing here. We’re always looking to make ourselves better, but we’ve got such a great company ethos here already year-in, year-out. For myself, for the first time in my life, I’m really pleased with how everything is going. So, both personally and at work, I suppose the resolution would be to keep things going on this track – keep the party going and enjoy it. That’s the most important thing in terms of what we do here – whether you’re out shooting, fishing, or hunting – is to remember that we enjoy it – it’s a passion. It’s crucial to keep that in the foreground.
If you could design a Rigby Christmas card, what would it feature?
If I could have anything, it would probably be a clever fold-out Rising Bite where the gun opens as you open the card, perhaps with the sound effect of the cases ejecting! For our actual Christmas card for this year, however, we’ve opted for a stag because they’re synonymous with Scotland, with Rigby and with Christmas time. We’ll be sending those out to lots of our friends, supporters and clients very soon.