From the man behind the Purdey Sporter, this intriguing gun, made in association with Perugini & Visini, offers a bespoke London gunmaking experience at an accessible price, says Mike Yardley

Product Overview


Wimbledon Park over-and-under

A well made and well presented gun for an accessible price, the Wimbledon Park over-and-under is certainly a gun to consider.

Wimbledon Park over-and-under

This month’s test gun is intriguing but familiar. It’s called the Wimbledon Park, conceived by Stephen Murray, who managed the Purdey Sporter project, and is made in association with Perugini & Visini (a Brescian firm) as the Purdey Sporter once was. Weighing in at 7lb 12oz, the gun is elegantly, but quite plainly, finished with minimal tight scroll hand engraving at the fences, action knuckle and action belly. There are beaded edges underneath too, and sculpting at the fences. The Wimbledon Park name is hand engraved on the bottom of both action walls in London style. 

The coin-finished action of the test gun is clearly inspired by the Perazzi MX8 as well as the refined Purdey Sporter (now evolved into the entirely English-made Purdey Trigger Plate model). Messrs Perugini and Visini once worked for Perazzi before opening their own gunmaking atelier in 1968. I have visited the firm and was surprised by the sheer range of sporting arms it makes – everything from hammer and hammerless sidelock shotguns to bolt and double rifles as well as museum-quality miniatures (reminiscent of George V’s tiny Purdeys). This gun is named Wimbledon Park because of the area’s association with shooting sports and marksmanship and because Murray has long lived there. 

Initial impressions of the gun are positive. I liked the plain but elegant aesthetics. The lines are good and the minimal action embellishment works well. More engraving is an option at extra cost, as is upgraded wood. The test gun, a demonstrator, boasted wonderful exhibition- quality walnut, but this would not normally be standard for the basic model. There are, however, almost unlimited possibilities with the Wimbledon Park. It is completely bespoke in regard to stock dimensions and type, barrel length, rib form and triggering. 

As tested, the Wimbledon Park was presented with three different sets of barrels (30in, 31in and 32in) and three different trigger-locks for the detachable lock action (single trigger with V springs, single trigger with tubed coil springs, and double triggers). I opted to pursue the test with 30in barrels fitted and the coil spring lock after trying the pulls on the V-spring trigger unit, which were a little heavy. The barrels are all monobloc and fleur-de-lys steel shot proofed. 

Bringing the gun to face and shoulder surprised me. It was not front-heavy like most machine-made over-and-unders. The balance point was just behind the hinge pin, and about 1/4in in front in the case of the 32in gun. The grip was excellent, a lovely open-radius London shape rather like those encountered on big London rifles. I was delighted when Murray told me that it had been made according to a plan I once offered him when we had been testing the Purdey Sporter prototype 15 or more years ago. 

The stock shapes generally were pleasing – more London than Italian. The comb was not too thick and had some taper, and the fore-end was rounded with a Deeley lifting latch. Two different butts were available for testing – and easily changed by means of a long key inserted through the recoil pad – one conventional with a fixed comb and initially fitted, the other offering adjustment for height and offset. 

I have always liked this style of gun. When I shot competitively, it was often with a Perazzi or Kemen of similar pattern (my preference tended to be the Kemens because of their improved grip shape and handling dynamics). These guns all have low action profiles, significant weight between the hands with solid thick-walled actions, and great pointing qualities if made with long, relatively light-for-length barrels. The trigger-pulls also tend to be good, especially in the V-spring guns. One usually encounters these in the droplocks (so the gun as tested is unusual in this respect). Fixedlock variants such as the Perazzi MX12 almost always have helical springs.


Messrs Perugini and Visini (P&V) began working for themselves around the time Perazzi offered the MX8 gun for the 1968 Mexico Olympics (where Bob Braithwaite won the Trap with a Browning B25). Nevertheless, the MX8 went on to achieve great things and is much imitated. Gunmakers have been inspired by its combination of bifurcated lumps and Boss-style rear bolting with draws and wedges amidships for added strength. MX8s also boast a detachable trigger-lock. P&V added a protective plate over the central cocking bar in its gun (seen in the Purdey Sporter and the test gun). How else does the test gun differ from a Perazzi? There are differences in the inertia single-trigger mechanism, and the mainsprings on Perazzis have hanging swivels on the back of their tumblers, whereas the P&V has rollers on the back of the mainsprings that roll up the hammers on firing and down on cocking. The test gun is also equipped with titanium chokes.


I liked the handling dynamics of the Wimbledon Park with the 30in tubes fitted. The 8mm to 5mm tapered, solid, rib promoted pointability, and the all-up weight at 7lb 12oz was ideal for type, too. The stock shapes, notably the grip and fore-end, were excellent. Sadly, though, I missed my first bird, then my second. Momentarily fazed, I realised the gun was shooting over the top of targets because of a comb that was higher than it looked. I compensated by shooting under, then, when connecting consistently, changed to the adjustable comb stock set higher. Everything from that point evaporated in a satisfying manner. The Wimbledon Park is well made, well presented and offers a bespoke build at attainable cost. Projected delivery is from six to eight months. It offers a London-like gunmaking experience at an accessible price.

RRP: from £14,999

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