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There have been many adjectives, many of them unprintable, used to describe those who support hunting, but optimistic, dedicated and resilient are just some that spring to mind when you consider how we’ve managed to overcome various challenges, not least restrictive legislation.
Not for the first time, hunting is under scrutiny courtesy of yet more campaigns by those who are intent on trying to remove access to land on which hunts can conduct their lawful activities or where they can be welcomed by the public. With a general election on the horizon too, these qualities will ensure that we can continue to follow hounds for the next 20 years and more.
Every year, Boxing Day meets in town centres and on village greens come under threat with new tactics being deployed by activists in order to push hunting out of the limelight. This year is no different with one hunt’s Boxing Day meet location being booked by an anti-hunting activist for a wheelbarrow race, simply to prevent the hounds being greeted there as usual.
Of course, this will not deter the pack involved from making alternative arrangements to ensure the crowds who turn out each year to cheer the hunt through the town aren’t disappointed, but it is a stark reminder to all that our opponents will stop at nothing to try to restrict our activities.
In the past two weeks, the future of trail hunting in Gloucestershire and North Yorkshire has been debated by county councils following motions proposed by Labour councillors to stop all forms of hound exercise and meets on council-owned land. We have always believed that it would be morally wrong for any local authority to ban a lawful activity and made these views quite clear throughout our coordinated lobbying effort which ensured that local packs and hunt supporters within the two counties communicated directly with their local councillors.
In Gloucestershire, county councillors rejected the terms of a motion proposed by a Labour Councillor, however, they agreed for the future of hunting on land owned by the council to be decided by their Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee. We will continue to put the case for hunting and hope that this committee will come to the same conclusion as the one in North Yorkshire which recommended that trail hunting should be permitted to continue on council-owned land.
The Alliance always stands up against attacks to protect hunting’s future but to be even more effective ahead of the next general election – when we anticipate hunting will come under the spotlight again – we need your help to keep hunt supporters informed of our campaigns so they can take action to help when required.
Please share this page with your hunting friends and associates so they can stay informed about how they can help to protect hunting’s future too by signing up to our Action for Hunting campaign.