We received a call this morning that the Ledbury Hunt were seen meeting up in an area near Upton-upon-Severn, despite fairly bad flooding throughout parts of Gloucestershire and Worcestershire. A sab was on her way through Worcs and dropped in to an area we know well in order to check some badger setts and see if she could find the hunt.
Badger setts checked, sab walked inland to where the hunt had just drawn blank through one covert in The Stanks. A new thing for us, the landowner, Mark (not to be confused with Mark the huntsman) was present and apparently very trustworthy as he belived that the hunt were following a trail because they had said so at the meet…
Soon after, a fox was seen running from a small covert to a larger one and sab, knowing that landowner Mark was on the phone to the police and not in contact with the hunt, pointed out the fox – Mark turned to look and suddenly turned back, evidently not wanting to see the fox as it would ruin his excuse that he had no idea that he was allowing illegal hunting on his land. Sab waited to see if hounds would definitely pick up on the scent – they did – then ran into the covert and rated them back as they came towards her.
Huntsman Mark gathered hounds and moved on while landowner Mark told the police that he shouldn’t have to police his own land *sigh*. Look up the definition of torts law (civil matters) landowner Mark and remember that hunting illegally (and allowing others to do so on your land) is a criminal offence. Badger setts are being checked on again this evening and tomorrow to ensure nothing untoward has occurred during the day and they will continue to be checked regularly.
Meanwhile today, the Heythrop were spotted in their Oxfordshire country with hounds out of control, loose hounds worrying local domestic dogs and hunt staff riding at speed out into traffic. Police have been informed and, again, locals will be out checking badger setts for evidence of blocking / digging.