Since the publication of the hunting webinars and all the current repercussions now being felt by the hunting world it might be easy to sit back and assume the war is over and all that remains is to mop up the last remaining vestiges of resistance. However, the reality is that this couldn’t be further from the truth.

While it is undeniably true that hunting with hounds has been fundamentally damaged this is no time to rest on our laurels. The so-called Countryside Alliance are finally starting to find their voice in their defence of hunting but their attempts at damage limitation appear to be pretty poor due to the fact they are wholly based on the assertion that trail hunting is a legal activity. If carried out as it should then their claims could be considered credible however the webinars prove this is not the case and it doesn’t matter how much noise they make about it this is never going to change.

 

What was more laughable was the production of a video which was designed to show how trail hunting worked. With shots from both hand held and drone cameras along with titles to offer an explanation it did nothing more than prove what utter nonsense it all was. The production was cheesy to say the least and was so contrived it could have been a parody. The other problem was the hunt they chose to focus on, none other than the criminally convicted Kimblewick! It may have been better for the CA to choose a hunt that hadn’t been convicted of dragging a fox from its earth and throwing it on front of the hounds and also shooting most of their pack a few years ago as they all had bTB. It was obviously not shot at an actual hunt either as there were no field riders (except for a single female escorting a child – have to get a child in there) or their own soft underbelly, the terrier men. It was also amusing that they shot this piece at the same location that we sabbed them blatantly cubbing only last September. Of course I couldn’t help but bash out a quick a more realistic version . . .

Some other news was last night’s vote by Peterborough City Council to ban all hunting on their land. The motion brought by Councillor Ansar Ali said:

“Most registered hunts claim to now be ‘trail’ hunting, an activity invented after the ban which allows hunts to claim that any chase of a wild mammal is an accident rather than intentional. This Council resolves that it will not permit trail hunting, exempt hunting, hound exercise and hunt meets on its land.”

He told ITV News: “There should be no place for [hunting] in the 21st century. There is growing resentment from the general public for this outdated and cruel sport.”

While the amount of land that this will effect is only minimal it sends a clear message of public opinion and obviously that got up Bonner’s snout. He winged about setting a “dangerous precedent” and continued with their time honored claims of “cheap political stunts” and “class war”.

Hunt Sabs spokesperson Lee Moon summed up the vote:

“The trail hunting smokescreen has well and truly been blown away and the British public are finally seeing the truth about “trail” hunting.  The hunting community have been engaged in a nationwide conspiracy to commit illegal acts for the past 15 years and people are sick of it.  We expect many more Councils to follow suit as more and more landowners protect themselves from being dragged into criminal acts.”

Out in the fields the hunts will be making their own decisions. Many, in keeping with their inflated sense of entitlement and arrogance will continue to hunt live quarry regardless while others seem confused and unwilling to risk being caught out. This will no doubt be a reflection on their relationship with the local law enforcement authorities and the levels of corruption therein. Needless to say all senior officers won’t be able to plead ignorance of the criminality going on in the countryside as copies of the webinar have been sent out to every force in the country by the HSA.

While the criminal investigation takes place into the webinar we need to maintain the pressure and keep our opponents on the back foot. Keep lobbying local land owners and supporting your local sab groups. Covid-19 has seen the cancellation of most of the usual festive hunt meets which is a small bonus to the situation and likely to cause a significant loss of revenue, however hunts will still be meeting, largely in secret and desperate to avoid the presence of sabs, monitors and the general public so if you encounter a hunt or see suspicious activity you believe to be hunt related remember to call the HSA Tip Off Hotline (07443148426) as soon as you can with the details. It could save lives.

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