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March 22, 2017

The Countryman celebrates 90th anniversary with ‘best wishes’ from the Queen

By Freddy Mayhew

The Queen has sent her “best wishes” to staff and readers of The Countryman magazine ahead of its 90th anniversary next month.

Actress Dame Judi Dench, chairman of English Heritage Sir Tim Laurence and wildlife presenters Kate Humble and Chris Packham have also congratulated the title on reaching the milestone

A letter from Christopher Sandamas, chief clerk to The Queen, read: “Her Majesty was interested to learn of the special edition that will be published in April to mark the anniversary and has asked me to send her best wishes to the staff and readers of The Countryman.”

Dench said “Your ninetieth anniversary – what an achievement and what a milestone. The Countryman has become an important part of the countryside that it represents so well with good traditional country writing.

“Open the covers and there in print is birdsong, wild flowers, country crafts and country life made real. A monthly treat – many congratulations and please keep up the good work.”

The Countryman was established in 1927 by founder-editor J W Robertson Scott who wanted to create “a magazine for the countryside”.

A magazine spokesperson said “little had changed in rural areas for centuries” when the monthly magazine was founded.

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“Most working-class country folk lived a simple life; many still doffed their caps to the squire. Few people had cars, and the bulk of visitors were the better off from the cities and larger towns.”

The April edition of the title will include a free souvenir edition of its first edition.

Editor Mark Whitley said: “We are honoured to receive the best wishes of The Queen and so many well-known personalities.”

“The Countryman will continue to examine the issues that affect the countryside; it will continue to give a voice to those in the rural community; it will continue to take a light hearted and nostalgic look at country life; and The Countryman will continue to embody our founder-editor’s ethos of being a champion of rural causes, and celebrate the best of the British countryside.”

The Countryman has a monthly circulation of 10,944 copies according to the latest available ABC figures to the end of 2013.

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