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Countryside Alliance calls for change to fox hunting laws

By WBEsme  |  Posted: December 26, 2013

The 2012 Ferie Boxing Day meet

Comments (21)

On a day when more than 250, 000 people will take part in a fox hunt, a countryside charity is calling for the government to change its laws on hunting.

The Countryside Alliance is asking the government to address it’s 2010 coalition promise to reconsider the ban on fox hunting.

The charity claim that they have received support from DEFRA, who they say will give consideration to a proposal from farmers to amend the law to make it easier to flush and shoot foxes.

They also suggest that some farmers believe an amendment to be crucial in the lead up to lambing season.

Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman at Countryside Alliance, said: “We have less than 18 months left in this parliament but the Government is still to make good many of its promises to the countryside – not least the pledge of support to hunting.

"Tackling the failed Hunting Act is a matter of trust between David Cameron, the coalition Government and the countryside. In three and a half years the Government has done nothing to address this illiberal, unjust and divisive law.”

The controversial Hunting Act was passed in 2004, banning the hunting of a wild mammal with a dog.

However hunts can still legally meet and let dogs follow artificially laid trails in what is known as “drag hunting”.

White-Spunner added: "The arguments for repeal or replacement of the ban are unarguable. Proposals to amend the Act backed by science have been brought forward and there is solid support in Parliament. Doing nothing is not an acceptable option.

“Hunting is a totemic issue and even a small improvement to the current situation would go a long way to persuading rural people that the Government is in step with them.”

More than 250 hunts will meet across the country today to take part in the traditional Boxing Day hunt.

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  • Atomic1964  |  January 02 2014, 11:46PM

    If White-Spunner believes that a heavily biased, non peer reviewed report by a pro hunting racehorse trainer constitutes "science" he is even more deluded than even I imagined.

  • Sledgeandstop  |  December 31 2013, 10:33AM

    Can it be considered a sport to have a pack of dogs, several horses, several men and women on quadbikes using mobile phones and the general public spotting for the hunters against a fox? It's pathetic and embarrassing for the pro-hunters to think so. Don't use slogans such as the 'Rural people aren't understood by the Urban City dwellers' (I'm paraphrasing here) to back your cause. There's a reason that it's banned, it's a blood sport. Let's bring back hunting yeah! Why not bring back dog fighting, Cock fights and Bear baiting while we're at it? Maybe we could start hangings again and even a few beheadings... It's the 21st Century. The LACS commissioned an opinion poll and found that 75% of the UK population are against Fox hunting and that that figure only falls to 71% in rural areas. Which means, even in the areas that the pro-hunters are claiming to have on their side - only 29% of people on average support them.

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  • PriscillaDMar  |  December 29 2013, 4:03PM

    my neighbor's aunt makes *80/hr on the laptop. She has been fired for six months but last month her check was *13248 just working on the laptop for a few hours. find more info ......WWW.jobs59.ℭom

  • ClaraPElliott  |  December 27 2013, 10:42PM

    my neighbor's aunt makes *80/hr on the laptop. She has been fired for six months but last month her check was *13248 just working on the laptop for a few hours. find more info ......WWW.jobs59.ℭom

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  • moonflower.uk  |  December 27 2013, 1:09PM

    NO - the human animal are the only vermin of the countryside ! Keep it as it is - better yet, make it totally illegal and let them do drag hunts instead if they enjoy so much the ride and the countryside - they won't mind will they ?! Hummmmm or are they all just addicted to the thrill of the kill ? !!!

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  • nickthompson  |  December 27 2013, 10:07AM

    For or against, most comments here are missing the point, hunting with dogs is ILLEGAL, as is housbreaking, theft, fraud, etc, etc, what we should be discussing is why the Police turn a blind eye to one set of criminals and continue to arrest another.

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  • dee_2  |  December 26 2013, 10:32PM

    Wasn't it the Countryside Alliance - the self-appointed guardians of the countryside - that told us that thousands of dogs would have to be put down and hundreds of jobs lost should the hunting ban be implemented? It doesn't seem to have happened. I don't see the Countryside Alliance saying much about the loss of countryside to speculative builders. In fact I haven't heard a peep from them. I wonder why?

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  • rayglos  |  December 26 2013, 9:50PM

    I don't think I needed to try, and you have emphasized it again with your fox may take the "occasional" chicken, what planet are you living on? or did you just happen to forget to mention they generally kill the lot en-route. Strange also about your alleged farming friends because I know a lot of farmers and most of them do support hunting.

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  • D-Head  |  December 26 2013, 8:58PM

    The 'D' is 'deputy' actually, so nice try #rayglos. My farming friends tell me that losses due to foxes are very very rare and that most harm done to livestock is as a result of domestic dogs being let loose unsupervised. Foxes will get the occasional chicken but that is due to careless husbandry more than anything else. And for the record, my farming friends DO NOT support hunting of any sort. They particularly dislike the so-called 'Countryside Alliance' which, like most organisations, claims the support of many but, in fact, represents very few.

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  • rayglos  |  December 26 2013, 8:24PM

    Anyone with even the half a brain D-Head mentioned would have seen the point I was making, except himself it would seem, perhaps the D in his D-Head name is very significant ! By the way, I do not support the shooting of foxes or badgers in the open countryside, which is at least a consistent stance, which is more than can be said for the so-called animal welfare brigade.

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