Atherstone Hunt Boxing Day 2014 – Blocked badger setts – no further actionPlease like our page West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs to help us continue to help wildlifeWe are reposting this footage from a few years ago. It shows the Atherstone Hunts terrierman Rob Pickering and associate John Coote blocking an active badger sett on Boxing Day 2014. A few hours latter Atherstone huntsman at the time Stuart Barton takes the hounds over the blocked setts. If the Atherstone Hunt was following a "trail" why have the need for a terriermen to block a badger sett?We provided this footage to Leicestershire Police and made statements, in fact we went out of our way to help Leicestershire Police with this case even providing details of both suspects.Leicestershire Police never even bothered to interview the second suspect John Coote. Instead tried to bully us into revealing an anonymous source and when we went to make a statement started questioning us over false allegations made by the Atherstone Hunt.The case eventually got dropped and no further action was taken. Leicestershire Police gave two completely different reasons as to why it was dropped. So we contacted the CPS to get their reason for dropping the case, they told us that evidence wasn’t handed in to them on time by Leicestershire Police. This was another case that DS Matt Trott was involved in.Please consider donating to allow us to capture more footage like this.All donations are greatly appreciated. Paypal https://www.paypal.me/westmidlandhuntsabs
Posted by West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs on Tuesday, December 22, 2015
Boxing Day is the biggest date in the fox hunting calendar, it’s a day the Countryside Alliance use to present fox hunting as a nice picture post card image. This couldn’t be further from the truth, it’s the one day of the year a hunt will want to be guaranteed a fox to chase and they will do everything they can to ensure this happens.
On Boxing Day 2014 our investigation into the Atherstone Hunt lead us to putting hidden cameras on an active badger sett in Carlton, Leicestershire, the area the Atherstone traditionally hunt for their Boxing Day meet.
The cameras filmed the Atherstone Hunts terrierman Rob Pickering and his accomplice John Coote first putting a terrier down one entrance of the sett to flush out any foxes inside. They can be seen using a tracker to track its progress underground. Then they are filmed using a spade to one by one block every entrance to the sett. This is done to stop the fox seeking refuge in the sett when it’s been chased.
A few hours latter Atherstone Huntsman Stuart Barton is then filmed taking his hounds all over the blocked sett.
We were close by on the day and saw a fox fleeing from the sett as the hounds were taken over it.
Not only would we argue that this is proof that the Atherstone Hunt were hunting foxes as why would they need to do any of this if they were just hunting “trails” as they claim, but blocking an active badger sett is also a crime in it self. It also shows that it is not just foxes that suffer at the hands of hunts
This footage was given to Leicestershire Police to investigate and the details of the two suspects provided to them, however Leicestershire Police didn’t even bother to interview Coote and eventually the case got dropped…. We asked the CPS why and they told us that Leicestershire Police had failed to hand the evidence over on time so they had no choice but to drop the case.
Leicestershire Police’s lack of action shows that we can’t rely on the police to deal with fox hunting. We can’t be sure what happened to the fox we saw that day but we CAN be sure of the positive impact this investigation has had. The Atherstone Hunt terrier-man Rob Pickering became so paranoid about being caught by us on a hidden camera that he eventually left the hunt. He was not replaced and during following seasons we noticed a very noticeable drop in the number of foxes being chased by the Atherstone Hunt, proving just how important terrier-men are to fox hunts.
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