RIP Clifford Pellow

One of our sabs met Clifford in the early 90s on a TV debate in Nottingham where riot vans full of police were on standby, such was the tension between the 2 sides. As she is also ex-hunt much was talked about at the reception afterwards as well as on other occasions over the years and Clifford was always on the end of the phone for advice over the years for us and for other groups and individuals who fight against hunting.

He was a very brave and strong man full of remorse for what he did in his youth. His knowledge passed on to sabs will go on to save many lives. We will miss you Clifford, RIP.

The others who have passed on Captain Robert Churchward (ex-MFH South Shropshire ), Richard Hall (ex-harbourer Quantock staghounds) also did much to pass on their knowledge obtained from their years in the hunting fraternity to those fighting to protect wildlife risking their safety to do so. Many who hunt do have a change of heart and stop doing it. To speak out publicly against it from previous positions of authority within hunts as these 3 men did was something which led to them being targeted, ridiculed, isolated and publicly denounced but they did it anyway because it was the decent thing to do. We salute them and encourage others who have doubts to speak out.

The following was written by Protect Our Wild Animals:

“We were greatly saddened to learn of the death of Clifford Pellow, aged 73. Clifford was inducted into the world of fox hunting in Devon as a young boy and it became his passion and profession. But, after two decades in the ‘sport’, and having acted as Huntsman for several packs around England and Wales, he became increasingly disillusioned with and disgusted by the many barbaric practices he was expected to tolerate. A major row with his ‘Master’ at the Tredegar Farmers FH was the flashpoint of his discontent and, after the Master of Fox Hounds Association failed to take his complaints seriously he turned to his ancient enemy, the League Against Cruel Sports. LACS arranged for journalist Andrew Tyler, of Animal Aid, to help write up his account of his life in hunting and what he now realised were the many cruelties which he had seen and been involved with. This was published in 1991 as ‘A Brush with Conscience’ and was a devastating indictment of the blood sport.

It took immense courage for Mr. Pellow to turn against and inform on his former colleagues and employers. The hunting community is quite small, and even then, pretty secretive, of necessity, because they have so much to hide – even more, these days, of course, because much of what they do is now illegal. Spilling hunting’s shameful secrets was, in their eyes, the greatest sin Clifford could commit. He was, of course, immediately ostracised, but was also subjected to much abuse and even death threats, as well as a libel suit by his former Master, Howard Jones. But the jury believed Clifford and the Master was left to pick up a bill for costs of about ¬£100,000.

Clifford did at least have the comfort of clearing his conscience – and a new set of friends on the anti side. He may have been surprised at how readily he was accepted into the fold. He continued to help and advise the anti-hunt cause. Alas, after hospitalisation for pneumonia and subsequent discharge, he died alone in his flat in September 2016. He was a man of principle and big on respect. Because he repented and tried to expunge the evil he had done, he will always be afforded the greatest respect – and he will never be forgotten. RIP, Clifford, the angels have blown you home.”

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