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Westley Richards

+44 (0)121 333 1900

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Westley Richards U.S. Agency

+1 850 677 3688

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Our desire to create a blog for the company has resulted primarily from the work we did in 2011, writing, designing and publishing the firms 200 year history. The response to the book was exceptional and whilst it answered many questions about the company, it could by no means in one volume, answer them all. The work we did researching the book left us with a fully organised archive of our documents and ephemera together with thousands of photographs. It seemed a sensible idea to us to continue the publication of this material in a less formal manner. 'The Westley Richards Explora' was born, again.

'The Explora' was the name given to a propriety shotgun with rifled chokes which was first introduced in 1905. Its design purpose was to put in the hands of the explorer and hunter a weapon that could shoot both solid projectiles and shot, thus negating the need to carry 2 guns into the jungle or bush. It was a remarkably effective weapon, providing both protection from large game and the ability of putting small game in the pot.

This blog will aim to explore the world we operate in, the products we make now and have made in the past. We will talk with and show guns built by other gun makers from around the world as well as meet the craftsmen who continue to keep this tradition alive, the barrel makers, actioners, stockers and finishers, learning from these people how the best guns come to be. We will see how the specialty trades like engravers, hardeners, blackers and case makers take the gunmakers canvas and help us pull the individual commissions together to completion.

Hunting destinations are discussed in our offices on an almost daily basis either by customers visiting, recounting their latest escapades, or people calling in with their news from the field. We will share this first hand knowledge as well as other findings and thoughts on new places to hunt and new people to take you there.

We hope that the things we perhaps take for granted, running this business day to day, will give pleasure and add interest to those of you who count this as your sport.


  • Steven Poole on November 21, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    I love the new Explora website and blog. It has a fantastic old world field to it. Gentlemen hunters pursuing grouse in their tweeds and hunters in India and Africa, in the midst of heat, untamed conditions encountering dangerous game. I'm a fan. Keep up the great work and the wonderful images... Brilliant.

    • Simon Clode on November 21, 2013 at 5:40 pm

      Thank you! It is much harder work than I expected but comments like this keep me motivated!


  • Rahul on April 13, 2014 at 10:54 am

    Are the Explora are still manafactured. Sure not. But Holland Holland reintroduced his Paradox in 2010.

    One thing I want to share here the in Holland and Holland Paradox you can shot a Simple 12 gage 65 mm lead cartidge and Bullet, insted of 12 gage Nitro. But in Explora you should have eto fire the specific ammunation. This is the disadvantages of Explora gun

    • Simon Clode on April 16, 2014 at 12:34 am

      No we do not currently make the Explora. In the case of each rifle the correct ammunition should be used to get the correct results. Hollands are making the ammunition to sell with their new Paradox.

      It is normal for any gun or rifle to be made for a specific load and cartridge, hence CIP and Proof.

    • Simon Clode on April 23, 2014 at 5:58 pm

      No we do not manufacture the Explora. The Explora and Paradox are both designed to perform with a specified cartridge. A 470 will go off in a 500 but it won't work properly (Don't try it). It is a common factor in all gunmaking that we make specific guns for specific ammunition and Proof our guns accordingly.

      • Rahul on April 27, 2014 at 12:03 pm

        I quired at Holland & Holland gunroom about paradox. They said that we can use a 12 gage Standered ammunation in Paradox, insted of nitro paradox ammunation

        • Simon Clode on April 28, 2014 at 12:00 pm

          You can use standard 12g ammunition in an Explora too, by this I mean shot filled ammunition.

  • Troels Pedersen on March 17, 2015 at 1:52 pm


    Thank you for making this interesting blog. I like it a lot!

    I try to make a list, as complete as can be, of Roald amundsens equipment, used on his explorations. That of cause includes his guns. On the journey to the South Pole he brought with him a Zeiss binocular, a Norwegian Bergans rucksack, a Glasshütte Watch, a set of Burberry gabardine suit, and a set of Greenlandic selskin suits for each member. But little is known about his guns. A Nagant revolver, made under licence at Husqvarna in Sweden is though known to have been among them. But what and from where from do you know of his W-R Explora shotgun?
    Thanks in advance for any answer!

    • Simon Clode on March 17, 2015 at 2:43 pm

      We know of his order for an Explora gun from our records, even a few years ago I was contacted by someone who had this gun. I know from 'stories' passed down that he had the gun to protect against polar bears but I have no proof other than we delivered the gun to him!

  • Kevin Cordell on May 5, 2015 at 9:12 pm

    I have an Explora in almost pristine condition. Have yet to fire it. Can you still get factory records for it? Can you provide any hints into any ball ammo that can be used?

    • Simon Clode on May 6, 2015 at 9:39 am

      We do have the factory records and have a facility to get a factory letter on our website

      I am afraid I don't know any suitable ball ammunition for you to use, most people home load rounds for this gun.

  • Sadiq on February 28, 2018 at 12:40 pm

    Is it possible to get the ammunition for explora of my friends have a explora in mint condition??

    • Trigger on February 28, 2018 at 1:42 pm

      Not that we are aware of. Some individuals have made their own projectiles, but nothing is commercially available.

      Best regards

      Anthony 'Trigger'

      • Sadiq Jamil on February 28, 2018 at 10:19 pm

        Can we get it from the factory on make to order basis??

        • Trigger on March 1, 2018 at 2:27 am

          Sadly not. We do not make this type of ammunition.

          Best regards

          Anthony 'Trigger'

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