A bespoke gun for our more straitened times is being launched this month by independent British gunmaker William Evans. The Pall Mall is a side-by-side sidelock aimed at sportsmen who require a hand-crafted shotgun made to their personal specification but that costs around a third of the price of a traditional “best London gun” – and takes a fraction of the time to produce.
The basic manufacture of the Pall Mall, produced in partnership with Grulla Armas SL, is made in Spain, while the “blacking, finishing and chequering” is carried out in England by the same craftsmen who work on William Evans’s other guns. The gun is entirely hand engraved with William Evans’s traditional scroll pattern standard and there is a choice of stock design, which is made to measure. Barrels can be any length between 25in and 32in.
“The majority of our customers who shoot game still prefer a side-by-side, and many are looking for a new, high-quality shotgun that can be made to their own specifications at a more affordable price than, say, an older, best London sidelock model,” says Alastair Phillips, gunroom manager at William Evans in London.
A William Evans best bespoke side-by-side sidelock, which is made to order and hand-crafted solely in the UK, costs from £47,000 and takes 24-30 months to reach its customer. But if you’re gunning for a quicker, less pricy option, the new Pall Mall is yours for about £15,000 and can be delivered within just four months.