Defeated resolution to ban trail-hunting on National Trust land was “ill-informed, unnecessary and has wasted a huge amount of the Trust’s time and money”.

The National Trust Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held today (Saturday 21 October 2017) at the STEAM Museum in Swindon. One of the members’ resolutions put forward was for a cessation of trail-hunting on all National Trust land. 30, 686 voted for the motion while 30,985 voted against.

Polly Portwin, Head of Hunting at the Countryside Alliance, who attended the AGM said: “Whilst we are happy with the outcome of the vote the resolution was ill-informed, unnecessary and has wasted a huge amount of the Trust’s time and money. In the end, despite months of campaigning by animal rights charities less than 1% of the Trust’s membership could be persuaded to support a ban on trail-hunting.

“After a very lively AGM and long campaign we are delighted that the motion put forward has been defeated and that the Trust’s board advised members to vote against it. Hunting remains an important element of the rural community and it is good news that hunts will continue to be able to access National Trust land as they have done for generations.”

Baroness Ann Mallalieu, President of the Countryside Alliance and a National Trust member, said: “The Trust was dragged into a fight it would have rather avoid, but with a membership of nearly 5 million it will always have members who feel strongly on both sides of the argument on any controversial issue. Surely the time has come for the Trust to adopt firm and consistent policy to permit lawful activities, of which trail hunting is one, to take place on Trust land provided it is not counter to the donors wishes and not contrary its land management policy in that area.

“Then at last the pro and anti-badger cullers, the anti-hunt lobby, the vegan anti livestock farmers and the Countryside Alliance can argue out their issues without the Trust being diverted from its proper job.”