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The future of side by side shotguns

Can your gun shoot high performance steel shot cartridges?

Following on from our mid-June article, ‘Lead shot in game shooting – what is the future?’ you will be aware of  the changes that will be coming to game shooting. During the 2019/20 season, the future of lead shot was one of the most regular topics of in-field conversation and Guns concerns for the future was clear. Unfortunately, these Guns where right to be concerned. Many shotguns are not suitably proofed to shoot high performance steel loads and sadly this includes the majority of old English side by sides. As a result of this, we are keen to provide an insight into the work William Powell has been doing to lead the way for the future of side by side shotguns.

In early 2017, William Powell set out to create two new models of side by side. A boxlock and a sidelock; both different in appearance, finish and cost, but with the same objective. They were to be future proof; traditional values merging with modern production techniques, and of course steel shot proofed. Three years later, following extensive design and development, in partnership with Battista Rizzini, we are delighted with the results and pleased to present the Viscount.

The Viscount

Steeped in tradition, from its appearance to the way it handles, it is easy to forget The Viscount is a gun built for the future. Not only does it look supremely elegant, this modern sidelock handles beautifully when using heavier loaded cartridges, and is capable of comfortably shooting high birds with either lead or steel.

As well as steel proofed barrels, it also boasts a range of extra finishing touches such as meticulously carved tear-drops in the stock, coin finished furnishings, elongated trigger tang, and finest hand chequering.


  • Available from £10,995 inc. VAT
  • Gauges: 12, 16 & 20
  • 16 bore model is available with 2 ¾” chambers and is not steel shot proofed.
  • Barrel Length: 28”, 29”, 30” & 32”*
  • Chrome Lined Barrels
  • Chamber: 3” (16 gauge 2¾”)
  • Single or Double Trigger
  • Fixed Choke at ½ and ½ with High Performance Steel Shot Proofing
  • Multi Choke available on the 12 and 20 bore model
  • Fitted into a leather covered ABS Case
  • Made to Measure
  • Complimentary gun fit

*Additional cost

Visit the William Powell website to find out more

Or get in touch with a member of our Gunroom Team on 01295 661035 or email:


Keep up to date with the latest news and availability as they become available.