About

Deer Central provide the highest standard of Deer & Wildlife Management to Land Owners, Instruction and Training to those looking to learn new skills and Experience events to connect with wildlife, wild food and the outdoors.

We are approved training providers under the Forestry & Arboriculture Training scheme, an initiative by the Government Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Forestry Commission.

We are also approved Training providers under the British Association for Shooting and Conservation.

All involved in delivering a service through Deer Central are qualified and highly experienced in their area of expertise.

Ben Lightowler

Managing Director of Light Alder Ltd T/A Deer Central

Trainer and Assessor Accredited by The British Association for Shooting and Conservation

HM Armed Forces

Ben Lightowler joined the British Army in 1999 aged 17 and served in the Middle East before leaving regular service at aged 24 and joining the reserves where he served a further 3 years. During his service, he found particular enjoyment competition shooting and gained qualifications in instructing and marksmanship coaching. 

Basra, Iraq. 2003
The President's Prize presented by Air Marshall Sir Dick Garwood

Defence Deer Management

Ben’s career in Deer Management began during regular army service with the service provider of deer management to the Ministry of Defence Estate. He undertook an extensive training scheme over several years as a probationer before promoting, taking on responsibility, eventually coordinating and montitoring the training progression of trainees in the South East District. Ben won the annual shooting competition in 2005 and the President’s prize in 2017 for his contribution to the organisation in his role as Training Coordinator. The training system involved the completion of training objectives under the guidance of experienced mentors and a practical progression towards and acheiving Deer Stalking Certificate 2.

Private Service

Bens civilian career saw him settle in Dorset where he took a role in Private Service on a large sporting estate where he spent 11 years as a Butler in the Principle’s 260 room country residence facilitating daily life and events including shoot parties and formal dining.

Decanting a Grahams 1977 Port
Practical demonstration of a suspended Gralloch of a Red Stag

Deer Central

The desire be out amongst nature and sharing his knowledge of deer meant that Ben’s work in the deer management sector, enabled by a  supportive employer, continued concurrent to Private Service and Deer Central was founded in 2016 as a provider of Training Courses including Deer Stalking Certificate.

British Association for Shooting and Conservation

Ben was approached by BASC in 2017 to train as an Assessor for the Deer Management Qualifications and gained further qualifications in teaching and assessing for the role. He now run’s thier regional courses for the Deer Stalking Certificate and Firearms Safety.

Teaching the Deer Stalking Certificate in 2019

Light Alder Ltd

Ben realised that meeting increasing demand and maintaining high standards of service would need his full attention. The company was incorporated in 2021 and Ben moved out of employment  and into running Deer Central full time devoting his energy into expanding the training, events and retail arms of the business. 

Message from Ben

Everyone remembers their first successful stalk or the first close encounter with a wild deer. I’ve often found myself reliving these experiences alongside others on their first stalk. To be able to equip a newcomer with the skills needed to work knowledgeably and efficiently as well as doing a conscientious and humane job comes with great satisfaction.