The National Trust have allowed so-called ‘trail hunting’ on their land for 12 years, and it’s coming to light that people, frankly, have had enough. The Ipsos MORI polls, commissioned by the League Against Cruel Sports, have shown a consistently increasing opposition to fox hunting (and other forms of hunting with hounds) over recent years. The trend is true regardless of whether those questioned live in urban or rural areas, and irrespective of where they sit on the political spectrum. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise when you scratch the surface and see how hunts conduct themselves; have a look at a few examples…
– The Atherstone Hunt rampaging through somebody’s garden
– The Atherstone Hunt trespassing on farms where they clearly aren’t welcome whilst their supporters threaten to shoot hunt saboteurs
– The Cheshire Hunt chasing a fox through a horse paddock against the landowner’s wishes
– The Pembrokeshire Hunt trespassing on a private nature reserve for a second time driving the owner to tears
Follow this up by having a look at the countless acts of intimidation of rural residents who don’t support the fell packs in Cumbria, some of whom are only able to survive with the blessing of the National Trust, as revealed in this Independent article (Jane Dalton, 19/09/2017) in which, tellingly, those offering their stories only do so under pseudonyms to protect themselves.
‘“A lot of my neighbours didn’t like the hunting and felt intimidated. My elderly neighbour had a fox under her barn one new year. The hunt came straight into her garden and were banging on her back door wanting the key to her barn so they could get the fox. She wouldn’t give it to them but she was really frightened because they were very angry.”’
The National Trust have recently provided an update on their hunting rules. They say their update is the result of a carefully considered review which took half a year, although it did appear on their website immediately after a sudden flurry of media attention on their hunting stance broke across the country. Convenient, right? It was so rushed, in fact, that by admitting terriermen have no role on a ‘trail hunt’ they accidentally admitted that they’ve been turning a blind eye to blatant wildlife crime for 12 years. What have the terriermen been doing with the hunts that the Trust licences since the Hunting Act 2004 came into effect? Quite an obvious question; the Trust probably shouldn’t have brought attention to it.
The hunts they licence are still being filmed with terriermen, such as the Warwickshire Hunt. It doesn’t matter if the Trust wants to do dismiss such occurrences as not being on Trust land, because if the Trust’s new rules require the hunts to follow non-animal based scent, where are they keeping the second pack specific to Trust land & trained on non-animal based scent if they are already training their existing (and non-fictional) pack on the scent of (live) foxes? The answer is obvious.
If you’re new to the subject and mistakenly thought fox hunting was done & dusted years ago, you might think this is something you should approach the management about, but we’ll save you some time by saying that they are already well aware of this rampant criminal activity. The Trust’s Director-General, Dame Helen Ghosh, stated she had read Trail of Lies at a lecture she gave inMarch. In the minutes of Borrowdale Parish Council from March, representatives of the National Trust stated that they had confirmed no fox urine had actually been imported. So where, we might ask, had the hunts been obtaining the fox urine that they claim to use for laying trails? It probably won’t come as a shock at this stage to say, quite simply, that they aren’t. Professor Stephen Harris, the world’s leading expert on the red fox, recently looked at this issue, and you can see his findings in 2.2.16 – 2.2.18 on P9-10 of his new report. Photo credit to Cumbria Hunt Monitors – the fox was killed on NT land on 05/11/2015 by the Melbreak Hunt
If you’re a member of the National Trust, we aren’t describing this farce to put you off the National Trust. We’re explaining it because if you think the National Trust should genuinely stand for wildlife instead of turning a blind eye to criminal blood junkies, then you can support a members a resolution to vote them off. With your help, the Trust’s land i.e. the land that you pay to preserve for future generations, can have a better chance of becoming a genuine sanctuary for increasingly pressured wildlife instead of a playground for psychopaths. We hope that you support the resolution and follow our simple guidance for members .