Our Chairman, Kate Hoey MP, sadly informed the Board meeting on Tuesday that she would be standing down after the party conferences. She said: "I am sad to be resigning after more than 9 years as Chairman of the Countryside Alliance."The organisation has achieved much in that time, but I will always be most proud that having joined when hunting faced such uncertainty, I leave with new generations queuing up to join the hunting field. "The staff and members of the Alliance have been an inspiration and will always have my full support" Lord Mancroft, who has served as deputy Chairman to Kate said: "The Board will consider Kate's successor at its next meeting, although she is, of course, irreplaceable. "Her contribution to the Alliance and the countryside is immeasurable. It is difficult to believe now but when she took over as Chairman many thought that hunting was doomed, shooting was next in line and so many other activities which are central to rural life were preparing to come under attack. "Her leadership and determination stiffened us all for the fight and there is simply no way that hunting would have weathered the storm as successfully as it has if it had not been for her. Everyone who follows hounds, shoots, fishes or simply supports the freedom to do so, owes her a huge debt".