April 2017

Back to News Index


(*)- added since last update


20.4.17

(*) Mail 20.4.17 REVEALED - the video footage that cleared wildlife presenter Chris Packham: Film shows the moment BBC star was forced to stop filming hunters by Maltese police who accused HIM of assault By CHRIS PLEASANCE and JULIAN ROBINSON FOR MAILONLINE - This is the dramatic footage which cleared BBC presenter Chris Packham of assault at a Maltese court. Film shot by Packham and his crew on the island of Gozo shows them being harassed by a group of policemen while attempting to film an illegal bird hunter. The 55-year-old Springwatch presenter complained at the time that he had been pushed around by officers, only to be charged over the incident himself. Packham's case was thrown out of court on Thursday, a fact he celebrated on Twitter with the message: 'Not guilty! And wait until you see our evidence... (story)
Mail 19.4.17 BBC Springwatch presenter Chris Packham is 'pushed by a police man' and charged with assault in Malta after confronting illegal bird trappers By JULIAN ROBINSON FOR MAILONLINE - Chris Packham has been charged with assault after a confrontation with illegal bird trappers in Malta, it has emerged. The Springwatch star revealed he had spent two hours in a police station on the island of Gozo and faces a court appearance tomorrow. Packham, 55, was filming a documentary when he claims he was 'pushed around' by hunters who then accused him of attacking them.... (story)

(*) Farming UK 20.4.17 Countryside Alliance launches Brexit policy document - The Countryside Alliance has launched a Brexit policy document setting out the issues that need to be addressed in order to "sustain a living and working countryside" outside of the EU.... (story)

19.4.17

(*) Ross Gazette 19.4.17 New Chair for the South Herefordshire Hunt - Major Patrick Darling has recently taken over as Chairman of the South Herefordshire Hunt in Wormelow. Major Darling is a former High Sheriff of Herefordshire, who farms the Caradoc Estate at Sellack, near Ross-on-Wye. He is a church warden at St Tysilios at Sellack and a keen huntsman.... Major Darling told the Ross Gazette: “You will all be aware of the allegations made against certain individuals associated with the hunt last May... “The South Herefordshire Hunt has, at its own instigation, resolved to place itself in voluntary suspension.... The hunt deeply regrets the damage that such actions have had on the reputation of the hunting community. The hunt wishes to state that such acts as are alleged have never been considered normal, usual or acceptable in hunting circles now or indeed in hunting history. (story)

(*) Cornish & Devon 19.4.17 Post area runners putting their best foot forward ahead of London Marathon! - A MOTHER of two from Holsworthy is set to put her best foot forward for a charity run. Diana Stevens will be hitting the streets of London on April 23, aiming to raise hundreds of pounds for the Countryside Alliance Foundation... Diana said: “I’m running the London Marathon for the Countryside Alliance Foundation because I want to help educate children about rural life.... “The Countryside Alliance Foundation organises various events such as Casting for Recovery aimed at those recovering from breast cancer.... (story)

CROYDON CAT KILLER April 2017
(*) Telegraph 19.4.17 Police link 'Croydon Cat Killer' to Portsmouth pet deaths - Nicola Harley - Police are linking the killing of three cats in Portsmouth with the "Croydon Cat Killer" believed to be behind 230 deaths in the London area. A cat was found beheaded in Marmion Road, Southsea, on the night of April 16, with a further two cats found killed within the Hampshire and Isle of Wight area... "I would encourage anyone who is aware of any other cats that have been killed, to call 101." Boudicca Rising, co-founder of South Norwood Animal Rescue and Liberty (Snarl) which has been cataloguing the deaths... (story)
Mail 17.4.17 Has the M25 Cat Ripper struck again? Woman caring for beloved pet while owners are away is horrified to find its decapitated corpse 'ritualistically' laid out on the lawn - By Harvey Day For Mailonline - There are concerns the M25 Cat Ripper has struck again with another brutal attack on a feline whose corpse was left 'ritualistically' laid out on the lawn... Tony Jenkins, co-founder of Snarl (South Norwood Animal Rescue and Liberty), a south London group set up to help police catch the killer, said: 'It was very upsetting and distressing for the cat sitter to make such an awful discovery... (story)
Mirror 17.4.17 Fears M25 cat killer has struck again after pet found dismembered with its head missing - The M25 Cat Ripper is feared to have struck again after a woman caring for a beloved pet cat while its owners went away for Easter found its dismembered corpse. She found the cat lying dead in the garden - his head had been sliced off and its remains were 'ritualistically' laid out on the lawn of the house in Redhill, Surrey... (story)
Kent News 17.4.17 Fears grow that ‘M25 cat killer’ is now striking in Kent after animals found beheaded in Chatham and Herne Bay -Tom Pyman - Fears are growing among animal welfare campaigners that the so-called ‘M25 cat killer’ is striking in Kent after decapitated bodies were found in Chatham and Herne Bay. The South Norwood Animal Rescue and Liberty (Snarl) group has issued a number of warnings recently following reported killings in Croydon and areas surrounding the M25 motorway in the south east... (story)
Croydon Guardian 12.4.17 Croydon Cat Killer: Two more animals found decapitated on Croydon outskirts - Samantha Mordi - At least two more animals have been found decapitated over the last two days, growing concerns that the Croydon Cat Killer is on the loose again. SNARL (South Norwood Animal Rescue Liberty), were called to two separate incidents, of a cat in Redhill and fox in Bromley found decapitated, in a similar fashion to previous victims... (story)
Kent Live 10.4.17 The 'Croydon Cat Killer' has struck again in Bromley but this time the victim was not a cat By OliverPorritt - The Croydon Cat Killer appears to have struck again, this time in Bromley, but the victim in this attack was not a feline. Also known as the M25 Cat Killer and the UK Cat Killer, the perpetrator now seems to have started targeting another species. And on Saturday members of the South Norwood Animal Rescue and Liberty (Snarl) were called to Bromley after receiving reports a fox cub had been found decapitated and its injuries were consistent with the Croydon Cat Killer... (story)

CALVER'S BRIDGE FOIE GRAS PROTEST
Derby Telegraph 19.4.17 Foie gras protesters at Bridge Inn in Calver Bridge, Derbyshire, vow to continue fight By George_Allen - Animals rights protesters have vowed to continue their campaign to force a Derbyshire gastropub to take foie gras off its menu. About 30 activists staged a demonstration outside the Bridge Inn restaurant, in Calver Bridge, on Sunday after its owners refused to stop serving the controversial dish... (story)
Matlock Mercury 17.4.17 We will not stop until foie gras is removed, say protestors - BEN MCVAY - A member of an animal rights group has said activists will continue to put pressure on a Derbyshire restaurant serving foie gras until its owners agree to remove the controversial dish from its menu. Activists gathered outside Calver Bridge’s Bridge Inn restaurant on Easter Sunday in protest at the restaurateurs’ decision to continue serving foie gras... (story)
BBC 16.4.17 Calver pub slams online foie gras 'mob attacks' - Owners of a pub have attacked activists who they claim were behind online "mob attacks" and abusive phone calls over their decision to sell foie gras. David and Samantha McHattie, who run The Bridge Inn in Derbyshire, said they have been "bombarded" with "fake reviews and hateful messages".... (story)
Derby Telegraph 12.4.17 Animal rights protest at Bridge Inn in Calver, Derbyshire, against choice to serve foie gras By George_Allen - Gastropub owners have hit back after an animal rights group revealed plans to protest against the restaurant's refusal to take foie gras off the menu. Anti-cruelty campaigners will gather at the Bridge Inn, in the Peak District, on Easter Sunday but the Tapas eatery's owners said they believed "value meats in the supermarkets are treated far crueller than any geese"... The East Midlands Animal Rights Coalition will stage the "peaceful demonstration" between 12.30pm and 3.30pm at the restaurant in Calver Bridge, Hope Valley.... (story)
Derbyshire Times 10.4.17 Animal rights activists set to gather outside Derbyshire restaurant in protest at foie gras dish this weekend - BEN MCVAY - Animal rights activists are gathering outside Calver’s Bridge Inn on Easter Sunday in protest at the restaurant’s refusal to take foie gras off its menu .. The protest comes amidst an online row, with the restaurateurs and several customers accusing protesters of a Facebook bullying campaign during which some 175 bad reviews were left on their Facebook page.... (story)
Morning Advertiser 5.4.17 Foie gras abuse prompts publicans to create a support group By Georgina Townshend - Two licensees have vowed to set up a support group for the hospitality trade after animal rights activists posted thousands of fake reviews and “abuse” on their Facebook page because the pub serves foie gras. David and Samatha McHattie, owners of the Bridge Inn in Calver, Derbyshire, have said they will “stand up to bullies” after the activists bombarded their site with false one-star reviews on its Facebook Page... (story)
Derbyshire Times 30.3.17 Poll backing for taking foie gras off Derbyshire menus - Poll backing for taking foie gras off Derbyshire menus Calver Bridge restaurant Our readers are overwhelmingly against seeing foie gras on the menu in Derbyshire, according to the results of our exclusive on-line poll. We asked visitors to our website what they thought of the controversial dish after owners of the Calver Bridge restaurant said they would continue to keep serving it - despite claims they have been subjected to a Facebook bullying campaign since animal rights activists...(story)
Derbyshire Times 29.3.17 Foie gras stays say restaurateurs - BEN MCVAY - The owners of a Calver Bridge restaurant which serves foie gras have confirmed they will not be removing the controversial dish from its menu. David and Samantha McHattie say they and their customers have been subjected to a Facebook bullying campaign since animal rights activists learned that the Bridge Inn was serving foie gras... (story)

Glasgow Live 19.4.17 There's a new vegan festival happening in Glasgow - here's what we know so far BY MAGDALENE DALZIEL - Glasgow's reputation as one of the most vegan-friendly cities in the UK gets a boost today with the announcement of ANOTHER festival dedicated to all things dairy-free. Vegan Connections takes place over two days in August, offering a tasty choice of treats with stalls from more than 50 of the best vegan companies in the UK and a host of local producers... (story)

18.4.17

Liverpool Echo 18.4.17 Watch militant vegans storm Liverpool Tesco - leaving shoppers confused and baffled - Bemused shoppers watched a group of militant vegans storm Tesco Metro in Liverpool city centrein a bid to stop people buying meat. The group, led by Jake Jordan from Warrington , marched into the superstore carrying placards and blasting the sound of animals being murdered. Jake, 20, led the group to the site of what he called an “animal holocaust”, by chanting down the “death aisle.”... (story)

17.4.17

COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE THUNDERCLAP CAMPAIGN
Horse & Hound 17.4.17 ‘The time has come to unite’: Countryside Alliance takes a stand over abuse - Lucy Elder - A Countryside Alliance (CA) campaign to put an end to online abuse and bullying in the countryside has reached more than a million people. The organisation ran a two-week drive from the end of March until 14 April to push the message out to as many people as possible. On Thursday (13 April) a message was sent out on social media by all 1,600 of the individuals and organisations that signed up to the campaign, with a total reach of 1.2 million people. The message read: “I stand against bullying of people in the countryside #reportonlineabuse”.... (story)
Farming UK 15.4.17 Countryside Alliance launches campaign to stop online bullying of people in the countryside - The Countryside Alliance has created an online campaign called Thuderclap to focus on raising the awareness of online abuse and bullying of people in the countryside. The campaign has already reached approximately 1.2 million people. The campaign was established on Thursday 30th March and has run for two weeks. Thunderclap is a ‘crowd speaking’ platform that lets individuals rally together to spread a single message... (story)
Pembroke Observer 15.4.17 Local AM backs campaign to stop online abuse of rural communities - Local Assembly Member Paul Davies is supporting the Countryside Alliance’s Thunderclap campaign targeted at combating the online abuse and bullying of people from the countryside. The campaign calls on social media platforms to take online threats seriously and take action by standing up to those who incite hatred and violence.... (story)

Guardian 17.4.17 Hunting ban wrecked foxes’ country lifestyle - It is no coincidence that the proliferation of foxes in urban areas (A brush with nature, G2, 10 April) has greatly increased since the Blair government’s Hunting Act 2004. Life for the fox is nowadays far worse in many parts of our countryside, and consequently this intelligent animal seeks sanctuary in towns and suburbs. The Hunting Act was intended to ban hunting foxes with hounds, but in so doing it has greatly harmed the rural fox.... Michael Clayton Oakham, Rutland (story)

URBAN FOXES
Mail 17.4.17 Urban foxes outnumber their rural cousins: Population quadruples in recent years with 150,000 now on the streets By Andy Dolan for the Daily Mail - To some they are a cute and welcome addition to the neighbourhood, while to others foxes are little more than vermin. But what is no longer in dispute is their march into urban areas, with town and city foxes quadrupling in number, according to university researchers.... (story)
Bournemouth Echo 17.4.17 More foxes living in Bournemouth than in the countryside - BOURNEMOUTH has been revealed as the urban fox capital of Great Britain. The town has more of the creatures per square kilometre than any other urban area. And the numbers - 23 per sq km - mean the resort has a higher concentration of foxes than the countryside... (story)
Standard 16.4.17 Number of urban foxes living in UK has 'quadrupled in the last 20 years', study finds - CHLOE CHAPLAIN - The number of urban foxes in the UK has quadrupled in the last two decades, with towns and cities hosting one fox for every 300 people. A study by scientists in Brighton revealed that the number of foxes living in urban areas of the country has soared to 150,000. Bournemouth topped the list – with 23 per squared kilometre – closely followed by London – which has 18 per squared kilometre - Bristol and Newcastle... (story)

Scottish Sun 17.4.17 SHOOT TO CULL - Hunters blasted for slaughtering grey squirrels then posting sick snaps of bloodied corpses on Facebook - By Lisa Boyle - BLOOD-THIRSTY hunters were last night slammed for tormenting and killing grey squirrels before posting sick snaps of their corpses online... A Facebook page, named Grey squirrel pest control UK, shows a photo of a man dressed in camouflage gear and clutching an air rifle. He is surrounded by mutilated greys... Kevin Newell, who runs ‘ethical’ pest control firm Humane Wildlife Solutions in Edinburgh and Aberdeen, said: “Shooting greys won’t bring back reds... (story)

Burton Mail 17.4.17 WATCH More than 1,000 people flock to Burton's first vegan fair held at the town hall By AOmisoreBM - There were all kinds of tasty treats on offer at Burton's first vegan fair, which organisers have deemed a "success," after more than 1,000 people turned up to learn more about the increasingly-popular lifestyle choice.... Midlands Vegan Campaigns, the group behind the event, hosted the fair as part of its ambitious plans to stage one event every month across the West Midlands throughout 2017. Kevin White, founder of the Midlands Vegan Campaign, said the fair was "fantastic" thanks to the number of people who turned up... (story)

15.4.17

Scotsman 15.4.17 Sarah Moyes: SNP must reopen total fox hunting ban debate - THE people of Scotland must be given the chance to make a decision on fox hunting ban, writes Sarah Moyes It’s time for Scotland to decide. No, not on independence or its relationship with the EU – you’ll have to go elsewhere for that discussion – but on what to do about fox hunting.... (story)

Northamptonshire Telegraph 15.4.17 Hunt saboteur caught with knife on Northants farm track - A hunt saboteur was caught by police with a knife as he tried to disrupt a Northamptonshire hunt. Alexander Rushant, 25, was arrested on March 25 on a farm track near Drayton Road in Lowick. Wellingborough Magistrates Court heard how police attended after a number of saboteurs were spotted wearing face coverings. Police asked the group to take off their coverings, which they did, but Rushant went back to area. When searched by police they found a lock knife in his possession... (story)

Yorkshire Post 15.4.17 YP Comment: Put birds before fears over predator control - From: Adrian Blackmore, Countryside Alliance, Tidworth Street, London. THE RSPB’s comment that predator control “is the last- resort option” in the article ‘A quarter of UK birds under threat as curlew joins red list’ (The Yorkshire Post, April 11) is not at all helpful in securing the future security of curlews in the UK. The curlew is a globally threatened species in chronic decline and thanks to scientific studies we know that predator control plays an essential role in its conservation... (story)

Irish Times 15.4.17 Deer, oh dear - On my initial reading of “Feel of the hunt” (Magazine, April 8th) I expected to be angry, disgusted and appalled by the contentious issue of deer hunting. However, what an enlightening read it was.... AMY WALSH, Bandon, Cork. (letter)
Irish Times 8.4.17 We're going on a Co Tipperary deerhunt - Restaurant critic Catherine Cleary witnesses the truth behind a plate of venison - It’s the half dark before dawn and we’re on an abandoned farm in south Tipperary trying to blend in. “This is all the way from America,” John Lalor whispers spritzing our clothes with scent eliminator to hide our human hum... We’re going on a deer hunt. We have talked in whispers in the jeep and closed the doors as softly as possible to try to maintain the quiet of this remote spot in the Tipperary countryside... Hunting on the Northern Trails: An Irish Man’s Shooting Stories from the Rocky Mountains to Swedish Lapland, by John Lalor is available in book, hunting and fishing shops (story)

Eastern Daily Press 15.4.17 Littering strategy aims to tackle £50m blight on the countryside - Doug Faulkner - A move to tackle the litter which blights the countryside has been welcomed by East Anglian landowners – but some say measures need to go further. Under the proposals, the owners of vehicles from which passengers or drivers throw rubbish could be punished, while people seen to litter could be fined up to £150... Countryside Alliance’s head of policy Sarah Lee praised the measures but called for further incentives to dispose of waste.... (story)

14.4.17

Arbroath Herald 14.4.17 Arbroath election candidates have their say - Mark Smith - Lib Dem I have lived in Angus since childhood and currently work as a delivery driver and freelance cartoonist. I am a committed campaigner on mental health and animal welfare issues, and I am also a member of the Scottish Wildlife Trust and the League Against Cruel Sports.... (story)

13.4.17

Spectator 12.4.17 Britain’s countryside is about far more than ‘good versus bad’, or ‘us versus them’ - Liam Stokes - Last month, an article appeared in The Telegraph under the headline ‘Head of Wildlife Trust faces call to resign over hunting past’. An alternative headline could have been: ‘Anti-hunting activists have whole worldview turned upside down’, because that is really the only story here. The hunting past of Mike Bax, head of the Kent Wildlife Trust, is simply proof of what every pragmatic conservationist already knows: that hunting, shooting and fishing go hand in hand with conservation... The problem with the binary, black and white view of the outrage-mongers is that it prevents collaboration between conservationists of different stripes by driving a wedge between those who shoot and hunt and those who don’t – and the only losers are the wildlife. (story)#

12.4.17

Western Mail 12.4.17 Horses commodities and nothing more - Jennifer White Peta UK, London N1 (letter)
South Wales Echo 11.4.17 This says it all about horse racing - While it’s a relief that no horses died at Aintree over the weekend, the mere fact that this is a cause for celebration says everything that anyone should need to know about the Grand National and the horse-racing industry... Jennifer White Peta UK, London N1 (letter)

Stourbridge News 12.4.17 PETA urges Stourbridge to switch to vegan eggs at Mary Stevens Park's Easter events - Dan Sharp - ANIMAL rights campaigners are urging the organisers of Stourbridge’s Easter events at Mary Stevens Park to switch to vegan eggs.... PETA director Elisa Allen said: “You can't eggnore the cruelty of the egg industry, which crams millions of smart, sensitive chickens into cages so small that they cannot stretch out even a single wing, let alone do anything else that comes naturally to them... (story)

Guardian 12.4.17 If you wear fake fur, you are dressing up as an animal killer - When I campaigned for animal rights as a teenager in the 1980s, anti-fur campaigners produced an iconic poster... But what about the fake stuff? Banning fake fur would seem an over-reaction (though it would certainly avoid any future confusion for well-meaning shoppers). More sensible than a ban might be a boycott.... (story)

11.4.17

Express 11.4.17 Ricky Gervais receives top award from animal welfare champions: 'The suffering SICKENS me' - RICKY GERVAIS has been recognised as one of the planet’s leading animal champions by receiving a prestigious international award. By STUART WINTER - The comic genius has been presented with the Lord Houghton Award as a tribute for the way he gives animals “a loud and powerful voice”. Ricky was presented with his crystal trophy at a special ceremony staged by Animal Defenders International... The Lord Houghton Award is presented annually by a group of leading animal welfare organisations – Animal Defenders International, OneKind, Cruelty Free International and League Against Cruel Sports – with each one taking turns to nominate a recipient.... (story)

10.4.17

Mirror 10.4.17 BBC's Countryfile star Adam Henson says animal rights extremists have sent death threats against his children - BBC TV Countryfile presenter Adam Henson has accused animal rights extremists of making sickening death threats against his children. The father of two had reported on controversial proposals to cull 70% of all badgers in areas affected by bovine tuberculosis. But he revealed that he has since received vile hate mail from angry animal rights activists... (story)

Plymouth Herald 10.4.17 RSPB regional director hails shooting's contribution to wildlife conservation By WMNPBowern - Students of conflict in the countryside cannot fail to be aware of the war of words over grouse shooting on the uplands of northern Britain... As the man who for six years ran nature reserves belonging to the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds in northern England, the RSPB director for the South West, Nick Bruce-White, knows all about those battles. Now based in Exeter, he could have decided to keep his head down on the controversial issue of shooting and conservation. But, to his credit, he chose to tackle it head on. Last month he visited a Devon pheasant shooting estate to assess the benefits for wildlife of managing the land for game shooting. His conclusion, which may not go down well with all RSPB members, is that the work which goes into creating and looking after a lowland pheasant shoot brings about significant benefits for wildlife... (story)

OVERGATE CHICK PROTEST
Dundee Courier 10.4.17 Dundee Matters: Overgate should not have let PETA win game of chicken ...A lot of our attitude towards fur is down to the pressure from animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, whose I’d Rather Go Naked Than Wear Fur campaign highlighted the issue. But not every campaign launched by PETA lobby has the same merit. This week they stopped The Overgate hatching chicks in incubators in the mall as part of their Easter celebrations, something PETA branded “cruel” and ignorant”.... There are a few obvious problems with this. Firstly, they’re birds. They don’t feed on their mother’s milk and don’t need their mums to survive. What they do need, however, is separated from other hens which are liable to attack newly hatched chicks.... But the biggest flaw in the campaign is this: it has stopped hundreds of children from learning about the development of chicks and by extension where their own food comes from.... (story)
Dundee Courier 5.4.17 Overgate bows to activist pressure and cancels chick hatching event by Paul Malik - Plans to hold a live chick-hatching event at the Overgate shopping centre have been shelved after complaints from animal rights activists... Animal welfare activists People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) had called the proposed event “cruel” and “ignorant”, and thanked Overgate management for abandoning the programme... (story)
Dundee Evening Telegraph 5.4.17 DUNDEE’S OVERGATE CANCELS LIVE CHICK EVENT IN SHOPPING CENTRE AFTER ONLINE PROTEST By Jon Brady - Dundee’s Overgate has cancelled an event involving live chicks after an online petition picked up almost 400 signatures... Steven Wilson, the creator of the petition, said he started the campaign with the animals’ welfare in mind.... (story)
Dundee Courier 4.4.17 Shopping centre tries to get their chicks in a row after animal rights backlash by Paul Malik - Animal rights activists have criticised the Overgate Centre over an “ignorant” and “cruel” live chick-hatching programme planned for the Easter break. A petition has been launched in an attempt to get the popular shopping mall to cancel the activity, which would see the hatching of live chicks from eggs in incubators in one of the centre’s empty retail units... Animal rights charity People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) slammed the Overgate for touting the event as educational, calling the programme “archaic”.... (story)

9.4.17

Bournemouth Echo 9.4.17 Chris Packham on his memoir and sending tigers to the moon - As a TV presenter – most recently of Winterwatch, which included a four-day stint at RSPB Arne in the Purbecks – photographer, conservationist and designer, the different arms of Chris Packham’s career are all united by his love of nature, and his desire to protect it... (story)
Telegraph 1.4.17 Britain too overcrowded because women are not 'educated' enough to stop having children, suggests Springwatch presenter Chris Packham - Craig McLean - At home on the edge of the New Forest, the crusading environmentalist and TV presenter Chris Packham is eloquently and forcefully fulminating on a range of subjects he holds passionately dear. The badger cull... For sure this former punk – still a gig-going indie music fan – is a controversial, divisive figure. He makes the blood boil of the Countryside Alliance for his fierce opposition to fox-hunting... (story)

PirateFM 9.4.17 PHOTOS: Mattress and tyres dumped in Cornwall - There are calls for officials to make getting rid our bigger rubbish easier, as more is found dumped in Cornwall.... According to the Countryside Alliance, figures released by Defra, which show a 4% rise in incidents nationally, do not reflect the growing problem of fly-tipping on private land because they are not recorded... (story)

Cambridge Student 9.4.17 Anti-animal-testing demonstration in honour of founder Joan Court - Noella Chye - Passersby outside Senate House on Saturday were met with the sight of people dressed in flesh-coloured bodysuits, splattered with red paint mimicking fresh blood, collapsed on the street, and other times jammed into tiny metal cages.... this was the work of Animal Rights Cambridge, which organised a vigil in memory of its founder Joan Court, who passed away on December 1st last year aged 97. Campaigner Sue Hughes, who spoke at the rally, explained, “We held this event in memory of our lovely Joan Court... (story)
Cambridge News 8.4.17 Animal Rights Cambridge locked people in animal cages in tribute to founder Joan Court BY TARA COX - Cambridge animal rights campaigners locked people in cages as they made their voices heard at an event held in memory of community campaigner Joan Court... Protestor Edward Maile said the group were carrying on what Joan would have wanted.... (story)

7.4.17

Independent 7.4.17 If the people behind the Grand National love horses so much, why won’t they get rid of their most dangerous jump? - Chas Newkey-Burden - It’s time for the Grand National again – that curious time of year when people who claim to like horses gather to exploit them, often hurting and killing them in the process.... (story)

Third Force News 7.4.17 Campaigners call for Grand National to be banned by Paul Cardwell - Animal rights campaigners are calling for people to boycott this weekend’s Grand National and for the popular horse race to be banned. The League Against Cruel Sports and Animal Aid are both asking the public not to bet on the Aintree race on Saturday saying the only sure thing is that horses will get injured and die... (story)
Huffington Post 7.4.17 Grand National 2017: ‘Deadliest’ Jumps At Aintree Course Revealed - Kathryn Snowdon - Millions of pounds are expected to be wagered during this week’s Grand National festival, but animal rights campaigners say the famous race course is still “a significant killer of horses”... The sport’s risks have come under renewed scrutiny after former Grand National winner Many Clouds died of a suspected heart attack at the Cheltenham Festival Trials Day in January. Animal Aid claimed it had raised concerns about the 10-year-old thoroughbred’s health with the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) prior to last year’s Grand National, believing his life to be “at serious risk” if he raced again.... The League Against Cruel Sports calls for the abolition of the Aintree Grand National until “a number of welfare improvements have been implemented”....

(story)

Devon Live 7.4.17 Is the Grand National a cruel sport? We have a look at both sides of the debate By anitamerritt - This weekend millions of people will be tuning in for horse racing's biggest event of the year. The Grand National, taking place on Saturday, April 8, generates tens of millions of pounds in bets every year.... Here are the very contrasting views of two people from Devon who reveal what the think about the Grand National... The Animal Rights Activist: Sharon Howe, 48, from Sidmouth Joint co-ordinator of Exeter Friends for Animals... The Racehorse Trainer: Martin Hill, 62, Totnes Owner of Martin Hill Racing with around 40 years experience in racehorse training... (story)

Express 7.4.17 Grand National horses dead: How many have died? Is the Aintree course dangerous? ELEVEN horses have died in the Grand National since 2000 - and there will be yet more focus on welfare again this year at Aintree By JACK WILSON - On Saturday, 40 horses will jump 30 fences over a course that spans nearly four-and-a-half miles.... Animal Aid say the positioning of Becher's Brook and its angle are both problematic for horses.... (story)

South Wales Echo 7.4.17 National disgrace - The Grand National is – by design – an accident waiting to happen... There’s no such thing as a “harmless flutter”, and this cruelty will end only when the public stops betting on this national disgrace. Jennifer White Assistant Press Officer, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (letter)

ANIMAL AID GRAND NATIONAL LETTERS?
Lancashire Evening Post 7.4.17 Don’t gamble on the lives of racehorses - Many people who are not interested in horse racing and who seldom gamble still like a flutter on the Grand National. But those people are unaware of how cruel this race is... . For more details, visit Animal Aid’s website... SUE BERRY Lea (letter)
Market Rasen Mail 31.3.17 Horses - Consider animal welfare - The Grand National course still presents the kind of perversely hazardous challenge to which no horse should be subjected... . For anyone who does not want to finance a ‘sport’ in which animals routinely lose their lives, there is an alternative: Sanctuary Not Cruelty ... For more details on how to help, or to order a free information pack, visit the Animal Aid’s website... Susan Buckley (letter)

Mirror 7.4.17 Vegan mum who won't give her children medicines like Calpol is ordered to vaccinate them by court - A vegan mum who was against giving her children basic medication such as Calpol has been ordered by a court to allow them to be vaccinated. The mum, who cannot be named, was told she must adhere to an order handed down by the Court of Protection in Lincoln.... (story)

Mail 7.4.17 One of Britain's largest halal slaughterhouses is under investigation over allegations of animal cruelty By Sean Poulter for the Daily Mail - One of the largest halal slaughterhouses in Britain is being investigated over allegations of animal cruelty. Undercover filming claims to show a slaughterman repeatedly sawing at the necks of sheep with a knife as they pass down a conveyor belt.... The filming was carried out last month by campaign group Animal Aid. Its spokesman Luke Steele said: ‘Our investigation has uncovered barbaric and deliberate cruelty being inflicted on animals, in horrific scenes unlike any we have ever seen before. There is no doubt that law breaking continues to be an inherent problem in abattoirs.’... (story)

6.4.17

Mail 6.4.17 I'd rather gut a deer than do the ironing: Vivid memoir of the first woman to qualify as a gamekeeper in Scotland - The vividness of Portia Simpson’s writing seduces you, evoking her passionate connection with the raw, violent beauty of nature - By Libby Purves For The Daily Mail - THE GAMEKEEPER by Portia Simpson (Simon & Schuster) - You’ll need a while to get over the first three pages of this book. Portia, the first woman to qualify as a gamekeeper in Scotland, has taken a punter out to shoot a stag.... (story)

5.4.17

IFAW FINED £18K FOR DATA BREACH
Third Sector 5.4.17 ICO issues fines totalling £138,000 to charities for data breaches - Eleven charities have been fined a total of £138,000 by the Information Commissioner’s Office for misusing donors’ personal data through activities such as data sharing, wealth screening and data matching... The largest single fine of £18,000 was issued to The International Fund for Animal Welfare, which the ICO found had shared 4,948,633 donor records with other charities, had conducted wealth screening, and had been data matching since at least 1995.... (story)
Scotsman 5.4.17 Charities fined for screening wealthy donors - JANE BRADLEY - A total of eleven charities have been fined thousands of pounds for secretly screening millions of donors so that they could target them for extra funds, the privacy regulator has revealed. The organisations have been hit with the fines - of up to £18,000 - by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) for breaches of Data Protection law such as profiling and targeting supporters based on their wealth... Two others - Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the British Heart Foundation - were fined late last year as part of the same investigation... Other charities hit with fines were The International Fund for Animal Welfare, Cancer Support UK, The Guide Dogs for the Blind Association, The Royal British Legion, The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity, WWF-UK, Battersea Dogs’ and Cats’ Home and Oxfam... (story)
Mirror 5.4.17 Top charities fined after 'secretly wealth screening' donors and trading personal details to try and get more cash BY ANN STENHOUSE - A host of top charities were fined today after snooping on donors to target them for extra cash.... The International Fund for Animal Welfare was fined the most, £18,000, for sharing nearly five million donor records with other charities and bringing in outside investigators to fill in the gaps in donor records... (story)
Guardian 5.4.17 UK charities fined by watchdog for wealth screening of donors - Owen Bowcott - Eleven of Britain’s best-known charities have been fined for breaching data protection rules. Some were secretly subjecting millions of their donors to “wealth screening” operations to target them for additional fundraising... The ICO investigation was launched after complaints about disproportionate pressure being put on donors by direct mailshots and phone calls to increase their donations to charities. .. (story)

Shropshire Star 5.4.17 Ludlow circus visit raises fresh controversy - A circus that features performances from animals was today opening on a field on the outskirts of Ludlow. Peter Jolly’s circus will be at the Dun Cow Farm site at Rocks Green, on the edge of Ludlow, until Sunday.... Animal Defenders International has called for the people of Ludlow to boycott the circus, which has two shows a day until Saturday and one on Sunday... (story)

4.4.17

Horse & Hound 4.4.17 No more hiding: Police to unmask violent hunt saboteurs - Lucy Elder - Police will find it easier to unmask violent hunt saboteurs from now on thanks to new legislation. The Policing and Crime Act 2017 was given royal assent to become law on 31 January and came into force yesterday (3 April). The Act will make it simpler for officers to require violent protestors to remove facial coverings. It enables police officers to require masked protestors to remove their disguises without first needing written permission from a senior officer... (story)

Irish Independent 4.4.17 Hypocrisy over animal cruelty - Reports of animal cruelty don't often make the front pages of our newspapers or prime time TV slots, but on whatever page or slot they get a mention they make for disturbing reading... The same legislation that criminalises ill treatment of animals specifically exempts the well documented and proven cruelties of hare coursing and fox hunting from prohibition.... Animals will fare better in Ireland when we abolish the distinction between "thug" cruelty and "snob" cruelty and thus make it clear that some animals (and/or humans) are not, to quote George Orwell, "more equal than others". John Fitzgerald Callan, Co Kilkenny (story)

Western Mail 4.4.17 Ensuring the horses at Aintree come first - As we approach one of the high points of the British Racing calendar, I wanted to remind your readers about the dedication and commitment of the 6,000 people who work behind the scenes every day of the year, to ensure the 14,000 British racehorses receive a level of care and a quality of life that is virtually unsurpassed by any other domesticated animal.... All of the history, popularity and prestige of British racing would mean nothing if we did not care for our horses. That is only possible because all of us who work in British racing are committed to ensuring that the horse comes first. Nick Rust Chief Executive, British Horseracing Authority, on behalf of The Horse Comes First (letter)

Sheffield Star 4.4.17 Not so Grand National - The Grand National takes place on Saturday. Since 2000 28 horses have died on the Grand National Course and, over the course of the three- day meeting... We can help by refusing to bet on this event, or on any other race, until radical changes are made to this cruel and unnecessary spectacle of horse racing. Kevin Marsden by email (letter)

COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE AWARDS 2016 (2)
Harrogate Advertiser 4.4.17 Village shop named the best in the North - A village shop and post office has put Marton-cum-Grafton on the map after beating competition from across the North in the Countryside Alliance’s Rural Oscars. Spellows was named Northern Champion in the Village Shop / Post Office category, edging out four other finalists from as far afield as Cumbria, South Yorkshire and County Durham... (story)
Isle of Wight Radio 28.3.17 LISTEN: Hear The Isle Of Wight Farmers React To Winning A “Rural Oscar” - Briddlesford Lodge Farm will soon be proudly displaying a “rural Oscar” after it scooped the Countryside Alliance’s Clarissa Dickson Wright award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Food, Farming and Education’. The Isle of Wight dairy farm has expanded its business over the years and now boasts a cafe, heritage centre and farm shop and hosts educational visits for primary school children... (story)
Horticulture Week 27.3.17 Garden centre owners witness Parliamentary attack by Matthew Appleby - Green Pastures owners James Debbage and Michelle Evans were outside Parliament when Khalid Masood killed four people last week. Debbage and Evans were visiting London from Norwich for a Countryside Alliance East Anglian rural Oscar rural enterprises champion award reception for their farm shop and garden centre business and were walking just metres from the place at Westminster where the incident took place... (story)
Hereford Times 27.3.17 Robert Ruck, owner of Wellington Shop and Post Office, moments from London terror attack - Ben Goddard - A SHOPKEEPER who collected a 'rural hero' award in London heard the gunshots of last week's terrorism attack. Robert Ruck, who runs Wellington Shop and Post Office, was walking over Westminster Bridge in London on Wednesday moments before the terrorist attack which saw pedestrians mowed down by a car injuring 50 people, three of them fatally... Robert and his wife had travelled down to London for The Countryside Alliance Rural Oscar awards which took place on Wednesday afternoon inside the House of Lords.... (story)
Carlisle News & Star 25.3.17 Cumbrian mum's terror as she faced Westminster terrorist - A Cumbrian mum who found herself just yards from the man responsible for the London terror attack said her first instinct was to simply run. Jennie Allison and her husband Steve were attending the Countryside Alliance Awards at the Houses of Parliament and had gone outside for a photograph when the killer - named by police as Khalid Masood - walked towards them... (story)
Evesham Journal 25.3.17 Worcestershire butcher Pete the Meat was locked down in House of Lords' Westminster Hall during London terror attack - A BUTCHER, who had just been crowned Britain's best, found himself in lockdown in the House of Lords alongside hundreds of MPs during the Westminster terror attack. Pete Lawton, from Inkberrow, near Worcester, had just been crowned Britain's best butcher at the Countryside Alliance Awards at the houses of Parliament.... (story)
Metro 25.3.17 Butcher on Westminster bridge during attack was also caught up in 7/7 - Nicole Morley - A man was caught up in Wednesday’s terrorist attack in London – 12 years after he was affected by the devastating 7/7 atrocity. Greg Strolenberg was visiting Parliament with his wife Jenny, his business partner Gareth Doherty, his wife Nicola, and head butcher Andy Gleed when London attacker Khalid Masood struck. The group had been attending the Countryside Alliance food awards in the House of Lords when they were invited on a tour of the Commons.... (story)
Redditch Advertiser 24.3.17 Pete the Meat, based in Astwood Bank, has been named as top butcher in the Countryside Alliance Awards - AN Astwood Bank butcher described as "a force of nature" has been officially crowned best butcher in the country. Pete the Meat, based in Astwood Bank, has been named as top butcher in the Countryside Alliance Awards, nicknamed the Rural Oscars, which celebrate businesses and groups working hard to keep rural life thriving... (story)
ThisIsTheWestcountry 24.3.17 Ponsanooth Stores awards victory turns to terror during London attack - Peter Johnstone - Triumph turned to terror for the owners of Ponsanooth Village Stores after their day out at a Westminster awards ceremony was overtaken by the attack on Parliament on Wednesday. Michelle Firminger and Ben Carter were at the Countryside Alliance Awards ceremony in the Palace of Westminster, where they were named the best village shop in the UK in 2016, and afterwards they had planned to tour the building with MP George Eustice.... (story)
Wiltshire Gazette & Herald 24.3.17 I had to protect my son, says mum at Westminster during terror attack - Tina Robins - MUM Ceri Cryer's first instinct was to shield her young son with her body when a man burst into the canteen at Westminster shouting to warn of the terror attack on Wednesday. Her son Bede, eight, had accompanied his cheesemaker mum with his dad and grandparents to the awards ceremony for the Countryside Alliance’s Rural Oscars and they had just sat down to lunch with North Wiltshire MP James Gray when there was a commotion on Wednesday afternoon... (story)
Cumberland & Westmorland Herald 24.3.17 Couple flee knifeman in terror attack - AN Eden couple had to run for their lives after a knife-wielding man came towards them during Wednesday’s terror attack in London... As the horrific scenes unfolded around Westminster, Steve and Jennie Allison, owners of Low Howgill Butchers and Deli in Appleby, were at the Houses of Parliament, having just attended the Countryside Alliance Awards ceremony... (story)
Hull Daily Mail 24.3.17 Beverley officials in lucky escape pay tribute to PC Keith Palmer killed in Westminster By HDMTDavidson - Beverley's mayor has expressed “eternal gratitude" to PC Keith Palmer, who was killed in the Westminster terror attack as town officials were leaving the Houses of Parliament. Mayor Councillor Rob Begnett and town clerk Helen Watson were leaving a tourism awards ceremony when Wednesday's attack unfolded... The mayor and Ms Watson had been at Westminster representing Beverley Town Council at a Parliamentary reception for tourism champions, hosted by Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom. They were congratulated by town MP Graham Stuart, after Beverley Food Festival was highly commended at the Countryside Alliance Tourism Enterprise Awards, before they left the event at 2.30pm... (story)
Farming UK 23.3.17 Andrea Leadsom hands out 2016 'Rural Oscars' at a Parliamentary reception - The 2016 Countryside Alliance Awards, nicknamed the Rural Oscars, have been handed out by the Environment Secretary Andrea Leadsom MP at a Parliamentary reception (22nd March). Businesses from across England and Wales, who had already won their regional title, came to Westminster to find out if they had taken the national title... (story)
Redditch Standard 23.3.17 Cut above: Redditch butcher is named the best in the whole country - Imogen Buller - A POPULAR Redditch butcher was moved to tears when he was officially crowned the very best in the country. Pete the Meat, based in Astwood Bank, has been named the top butcher in the UK in the Countryside Alliance Awards, a contest known as the ‘Rural Oscars’ which celebrates businesses and groups working hard to keep rural life thriving... (story)
East Anglian Daily Times 23.3.17 Lavenham butcher at 7/7 2005 London bombing was trapped at Parliament during 2017 Westminster terror attack - Matt Reason - Sheltering in the Houses of Parliament, a Suffolk butcher has revealed how for the second time he found himself stuck in London as terrorists struck the capital city. Greg Strolenberg, of Lavenham Butchers, was visiting the Houses of Parliament on Wednesday, March 22, with his wife Jenny along with his business partner Gareth Doherty, his wife Nicola, and head butcher Andy Gleed. They had just finished picking up their Countryside Alliance food ‘Oscar’ at a ceremony in the House of Lords when they were invited on an unplanned tour of the House of Commons with Suffolk councillor Harriet Steer... (story)
Times & Star 23.3.17 West Cumbrian woman caught up in London terror attack - A West Cumbrian trader was caught up in the terror attack in the heart of London while collecting an award for her work following Storm Desmond. Daphne Eddington, who runs Braithwaite's village shop, visited parliament with Copeland MP Trudy Harrison to receive a rural hero award from the Countryside Alliance.... (story)
Wilts & Glos Standard 23.3.17 Brinkworth farming family speak about being trapped in Parliament during yesterday's terror attack - THREE generations of Brinkworth famers were in Parliament yesterday as the horrors of the suspected terrorist attack unfolded. Ceri Cryer of Brinkworth Dairy was with her family to receive the Best Farm Enterprise for the South West Award at the Countryside Alliance’s Rural Oscars, when all hell broke loose. The family were with North Wiltshire MP James Gray on the terrace of Parliament, in view of Westminster Bridge, moments before the car crashed into victims... (story)
Western Mail 23.3.17 Swansea family 'fortunate' to have missed London attacks by minutes BY GEMMA PARRY - A Swansea man in Parliament on the day of the London terror attacks has said he feels fortunate to have missed it by minutes. David Francis was at the House of Commons and the House of Lords with his son Jamie, daughter-in-law Jodie and their three children to take part in the Countryside Alliance Awards. Their shop in Gower , Pennard Stores, had been shortlisted for the Rural Shop and Post Office for Wales award... (story)
ITV 23.3.17 Cumbrian trader caught up in Westminster terror alert - A Cumbrian woman was caught up in yesterday’s terror attack when she visited Parliament to receive an award for her work following Storm Desmond. Daphne Eddington who runs the village shop in Braithwaite was there to receive a Countryside Alliance award as a 'Rural Hero'.... (story)
Bury Free Press 23.3.17 Lavenham butcher describes the moment he and colleagues were caught in Westminster terror attack - PAUL DERRICK - A Lavenham butcher who was at the House of Commons during Wednesday’s terrorist attack has described the moment he and colleagues fled into the building. The team from Lavenham Butchers were at Westminster where they had just received a highly commended in the Countryside Alliance Awards’ best butcher category... (story)
Telegraph 22.3.17 The rural Oscars: Britain's best village shop, butcher and farm revealed - Saffron Alexander - A village shop and post office which had been closed due to flooding for 11 months has been named Britain's best village shop. The Countryside Alliance Awards, a celebration of rural produce, skills, enterprise and heritage through small business, named Ponsanooth Village Stores in Cornwall the village shop and post office champion for 2016... Pete the Meat in Worcestershire was named the champion in the Butcher category. The shop was described by the judges as "a force of nature" in the industry.... The Farm Enterprise category saw Hayley Hanson Hide in Wales come out on top to be named champion.... (story)
Telegraph 22.3.17 Secrets of the best rural shop in Britain - On the evening of December 23, 2013, Michelle Firminger headed out from her village shop and Post Office to run a few errands ahead of the busiest day of the year... Yet from the sodden chaos has emerged an incredible story of community solidarity, as the entire village rallied around to rebuild Michelle’s shop and staff it as volunteers. Yesterday, it won the coveted prize of the best village shop in the country in the Countryside Alliance Awards, a category supported by the Daily Telegraph.... (story)
Derby Telegraph 22.3.17 London terror attack sees owner of Derby's Bluebell Dairy stuck in Houses of Parliament with family By ShannynQuinn - A Derby couple and their baby son were among those in lockdown inside the Houses of Parliament following the Westminster terrorist attack. Oliver Brown, of Bluebell Dairy, Spondon, travelled to London this morning with his wife, Ella, and their six-month old son to attend the Countryside Alliance Awards ceremony - which was held at the Houses of Parliament - where the company received an award... (story)
Yorkshire Post 22.3.17 Lockdown follows Westminster rural awards - BEN BARNETT - Representatives of rural businesses in Yorkshire attending a prestigious national awards ceremony at the House of Lords today are all believed to be safe. A reception to celebrate the winners of the Countryside Alliance Awards was held in the Cholmondeley Room this afternoon and it finished shortly before gunfire rang out in the grounds of Westminster Palace at around 2.45pm... Earlier in the day, there had been cause to celebrate for Yorkshire enterprises at the awards. The Ross family of Lawns Farm Shop in Morthen near Rotherham was named the Countryside Alliance’s Local Food Champion and Beverley Food Festival was highly commended in the Tourism Enterprise category.... (story)
Hertfordshire Mercury 22.3.17 Owner of Foxholes Farm Shop in Hertford locked down in parliament following terror attack By Sam_Meadows - The owner of a Hertford farm shop which won second place in a national awards ceremony at Parliament is currently in lock down. Foxholes Farm was highly commended in the Countryside Alliance awards but Catherine Smith is now locked in the building following today's terror attack.... (story)
ThisIsWiltshire 21.3.17 Long-standing business unveils exciting plans for new leisure facility - Robin Murray, Reporter - A FAMILY-RUN company is about to open a new leisure facility in a village near Warminster. Hillbrush will take an exciting step forward in its 95-year history on Monday, April 10 when Visit Hillbrush, a new destination for eating, shopping and learning, opens to the public in Mere... Visit Hillbrush has collaborated with a number of local suppliers including Countryside Alliance Award Winners Penleigh Farm Traditional Butchers and Lavender Blue Bakery... (story)
West Briton 20.3.17 Ponsanooth post office and stores wins Countryside Alliance rural Oscar By WBgdavies - A woman who has transformed a village shop and post office as well as the community itself has helped it win a 'rural Oscar'. onsanooth Village Stores has been named the top in the South West by the Countryside Alliance awards. Michelle Firminger took on the stores in 2013 but just eight months later it was destroyed by a devastating flood which also left her homeless... (story)
Hertfordshire Mercury 20.3.17 Foxholes Farm in Hertford win in Rural Oscars Awards local food and drink category By charlottepage - Foxholes Farm in Hertford has won an award at the Rural Oscars for businesses in the East of England. The London Road farm was named winner in the Local Food and Drink category in the Countryside Alliance's annual awards, which celebrates rural produce, skills, heritage and enterprise... (story)
SoGlos 16.3.17 Hillside Brewery wins Countryside Alliance Rural Oscar - Forest of Dean’s independently run Hillside Brewery has topped the Tourism Enterprise category in the south west region of the Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars 2017, and will go on to compete in the British finals... (story)
Ross Gazette 16.3.17 Longhope Brewery in line for Rural Oscar - Hillside Brewery, at Longhope, is famous for its award winning artisan ales, experience days and community work. Now this inspiring local business has won the Tourism Enterprise category in the Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars, in the South West region 2017... (story)
Newbury Weekly News 14.3.17 West Berkshire business scoops a rural 'Oscar' - A WEST Berkshire business has walked away with a rural ‘Oscar’. Saddleback Farm Shop, in Brightwalton, was named joint- champion in the South East Butcher category at the Countryside Alliance Awards, which celebrate and promote rural businesses... (story)
Andover Advertiser 13.3.17 Clatfords Village Store and Post Office highly commended in the South East in the Countryside Alliance Awards - A GOODWORTH Clatford-based shop has been honoured in the ‘Rural Oscars’. The Clatfords Village Store and Post Office was one of five stores in the South East to receive a highly commended in this year’s Countryside Alliance Awards... (story)
Suffolk Free Press 9.3.17 Top Lavenham butchers hopes to win national prize - Owners and staff from a Lavenham butchers’ shop are off to lunch in the House of Lords with the hope of winning a national award. Lavenham Butchers, run by Greg Strolenberg and Gareth Doherty and their wives Jen and Nicola, won the regional award for their shop in the Countryside Alliance Awards. Now they are up against five other butchers’ shops from all over the country in the final of the awards which celebrate rural produce and excellence.... (story)
Romsey Advertiser 7.3.17 Droxford holiday business holds open day as part of disabled access campaign - Andrew Ross - KATHERINE and Andrew Graham, co-owners of Wallops Wood Cottages, which was awarded Highly Commended in the South East Countryside Alliance Awards, are hosting an open morning on Friday... (story)
4.3.17 Redditch butcher meats with more award success - Imogen Buller - A REDDITCH butcher is officially a cut above the rest after receiving a top Midlands award for his work. Pete the Meat, based in Astood Bank, has been named the joint Midlands winner in the Butcher category of the Countryside Alliance Awards, a contest known as the ‘Rural Oscars’ which celebrate businesses and groups working hard to keep rural life thriving... (story)
Rugby Advertiser 1.3.17 Rural ‘Oscar’ award for Napton store - A village shop in Napton that was once set to close down has gone on to blossom and win a rural ‘Oscar’ award. Adam and Hannah Slade, who run Napton Village Stores, have shown that a mix of fresh produce, everyday items and little luxuries at competitive prices can make a shop successful... (story)
Daventry Express 1.3.17 Raising a glass to award - Glasses are being raised at Warner Edwards Distillery in Harrington after they won a prestigious award. The business, run by Tom Warner, received a Rural Oscar from the Countryside Alliance for Midlands Champion in the Local Food & Drink category... (story)
Uckfield FM 28.2.17 The Llama Park at Wych Cross wins top award! Nus Ghani has enthusiastically welcomed news that The Llama Park, in Wych Cross near Forest Row, has won a Countryside Alliance Award. Ms Ghani nominated The Llama Park, which has been named South East Regional Champion in the Tourism Enterprise Category. It will now go forward to the national grand final.... (story)
Wilts & Gloucestershire Standard 28.2.17 Brinkworth Dairy scoop up two more awards for excellence - Callum Chaplin - BRINKWORTH Dairy have added two more awards to their overflowing trophy cabinet. The north Wiltshire dairy won the Chippenham Business Awards Best Independent Business and Country Side Alliance South West Best Farm Enterprise, all in the same week... (story)
Eastern Daily Press 25.2.17 Bergh Apton garden centre Green Pastures bags two coveted awards - Geraldine Scott - It’s double celebrations at a Norfolk garden centre after scooping two national awards at the Garden Retail Awards in London this week. Green Pastures, based in Bergh Apton, near Norwich, have been crowned Garden Centre Outlet of the Year (medium-sized centre category) as well as bagging the Catering Excellence award for the best garden centre based restaurant... (story)
Horncastle News 25.2.17 Woodhall Spa butchers ready to bring home the bacon - R J Hirst of Woodhall Spa are celebrating after becoming 2016 Countryside Alliance highly commended finalists for Best Butchers in the East of England... (story)
Evesham Journal 25.2.17 Businesses scoop top regional awards - THREE local businesses have taken top spots in the regional finals of a national countryside award scheme and are in contention for a British title. They were all nominated by the public in the 2016 Countryside Alliance Awards – known as the Rural Oscars. Pete the Meat butchers in Evesham Road, Astwood Bank, Redditch, is joint Midlands champion in the Butcher Category of the annual accolades while Bodenham Arboretum, Wolverley, Kidderminster, is joint Midlands champion in the Tourism and Enterprise category, while Hillers Farm Shop, Dunnington, near Alcester, came joint Midlands champion in the Local Food/Drink category.... (story)
Harborough Mail 23.2.17 Gin makers are distilling success - A gin distilled just a few miles from Harborough has been named one of the winners in the ‘Rural Oscars’. Warner Edwards Distillery, based at Falls Farm in Harrington, was among the winners for the Midlands at the 2016 Countryside Alliance Awards... (story)
Northamptonshire Telegraph 22.2.17 Cheers to another award for gin producer based near Rothwell - STEPHANIE WEAVER - A gin producer has scooped yet another award after being named one of the winners at the ‘Rural Oscars.’ Warner Edwards from Harrington was among the winners for the Midlands at the 2016 Countryside Alliance Awards, which are better known as the Rural Oscars.... (story)
Redditch Standard 21.2.17 Hillers farm shop near Alcester wins top Countryside Alliance food award - Ross Crawford - HILLERS Farm Shop of Dunnington near Alcester is celebrating after being crowned Local Food Winner for the Midlands in the Countryside Alliance Awards... (story)
Lincolnshire Echo 21.2.17 Sweet treat for Lincolnshire tearoom and post office By Lisa Porter - Sweet treats, cream teas, local lamb and honey all contributed to a village teahouse and post office winning a top award. Leadenham Post Office, Gift Shop and Teahouse have competed against the entire East of England won the rural Oscars... Judges from the Countryside Alliance, running the awards, visited the tearooms after it made past the voting stage... (story)
Eastern Daily Press 17.2.17 East Anglian firms in the running for Countryside Alliance’s Rural Oscars - Chris Hill - East Anglian firms will compete for national titles after winning their regional categories in a rural business awards scheme. The Rural Oscars are the Countryside Alliance’s annual celebration of rural produce, skills, enterprise and heritage. The East of England category winners, who will go through to the British finals in March, include Dairy Barns in Hickling, which won the tourism enterprise award, and Green Pastures, in Bergh Apton, outside Norwich, which was judged the best farm enterprise… (story)
Cumbria Crack 16.2.17 Low Howgill is a cut above the rest - Steve and Jennie Allison’s shop Low Howgill Butchers & Deli in Appleby has just been made the Regional Winner for the North of England in the Butchers category by the Countryside Alliance Awards… (story)
Cambrian News 13.2.17 Sarn butcher recognised at national awards By Dylan Davies - A SARN butcher has been named runner-up at a national awards ceremony. The Countryside Alliance Wales Awards, dubbed the Welsh Rural Oscars, celebrates rural produce, skills, enterprise and heritage. Sarn Village Shop, Cig Cerion, was named runner-up in the butcher category…. (story)
Daily Post 11.2.17 Gwynedd butcher is a cut above in Countryside Alliance awards - BY ANDREW FORGRAVE - Gwynedd butcher Bryn Jones was the toast of Pen Llŷn after excelling in this Countryside Alliance Wales Awards. Just six years after deciding to retrain as a butcher, and three years after opening his first shop, his Sarn-based Cig Cerion business was highly commended in a competition featuring a host of established names… (story)
Daily Post 11.2.17 Mobile catering business in a horsebox wins Countryside Alliance accolade BY ANDREW FORGRAVE - An advocate of local food has won plaudits for setting up a quirky mobile catering business that offers the best of North Wales produce. Caroline Dawson from Nercwys, Flintshire, was named runner-up in the Local Food category at this year’s Countryside Alliance Wales Awards, Cardiff. Her business, the wonderfully named “Fodder in the Field”, provides a shabby chic catering service at outdoor events, from shows to weddings – all served from a converted a 1971 Rice horse trailer… (story)
County Echo 9.2.17 Local business highly commended in Local Food category - A north Pembrokeshire firm has been highly commended at the Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars for Wales…. Three Pembrokeshire-based businesses won awards at the event, including Megan Davies, owner of Rhwbeth Melys cake company in Maenclochog, who was highly commended in the Local Food category…. (story)
Narberth & Whitland Observer 8.2.17 Pembrokeshire Falconry wings its way to Welsh Rural Oscar - MID and West AM Simon Thomas sponsored the Countryside Alliance Wales Awards that mark excellence in rural produce, skills, enterprise and heritage. The ceremony was held in the historic National Assembly building the Pierhead in Cardiff Bay. It was hosted by Rachel Evans, Countryside Alliance director for Wales. At the event, Simon Thomas met with the team from Pembrokeshire Falconry. The firm based at Picton Castle, Haverfordwest, was awarded the Wales champion accolade in the farm enterprise category… (story)
Narberth & Whitland Observer 8.2.17 Awards for Pembrokeshire businesses at Welsh Rural Oscars - Pembrokeshire politicians Paul Davies AM and Angela Burns AM joined around 100 people last Wednesday evening at the Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars for Wales… Three Pembrokeshire-based businesses were recognised in winning awards at the event. Sian and Geraint Bowen, who run Bethesda Farm Shop near Narberth, were highly commended in the butcher category and Megan Davies, owner of Rhwbeth Melys cake company in Maenclochog, was highly commended in the local food category. Pembrokeshire Falconry won first place in the tourism category and go forward to the UK awards which are hosted in Westminster later on this year… (story)
Pembroke & Pembroke Dock Observer 8.2.17 Awards for Pembrokeshire businesses at Welsh Rural Oscars - Pembrokeshire politicians Paul Davies AM and Angela Burns AM joined around 100 people last Wednesday evening at the Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars for Wales…. Three Pembrokeshire-based businesses were recognised in winning awards at the event. Sian and Geraint Bowen, who run Bethesda Farm Shop near Narberth, were highly commended in the butcher category and Megan Davies, owner of Rhwbeth Melys cake company in Maenclochog, was highly commended in the local food category. Pembrokeshire Falconry won first place in the tourism category and go forward to the UK awards which are hosted in Westminster later on this year…. (story)
Western Telegraph 6.2.17 Pembrokeshire Falconry win place in Rural Oscars final - THREE businesses from Pembrokeshire were among those enjoying the accolades at the Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars for Wales last week. Pembrokeshire Falconry based at Picton Castle, Haverfordwest was awarded the Wales champion accolade in the farm enterprise category go forward to the UK awards which are hosted in Westminster later on this year… (story)
Warrington Guardian 3.2.17 The ‘Rural Oscars’ - FORGET Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone and glittering Hollywood award ceremonies. Another ‘Oscars’ battle is heating up and one of the finalists is a lot closer to home. Snoutwood Trotters at Laburnum Farm in Great Sankey has made it into the final of the Countryside Alliance Awards… (story)
Holsworthy Post 18.1.17 Blackberry Farm Shop reach regional finals - THE team at the Blackberry Farm Shop in Milton Damerel, has made it to the regional finals of one of the countryside’s most prestigious awards. Lizzy and Mike Kirby and their team have ‘done Devon proud’ and made it through to the final stages of ‘The Countryside Alliance Rural Oscars’… (story)
Ledbury Reporter 2.1.17 Two Herefordshire finalists named in Countryside Alliance's Rural Oscars - TWO county village shops have been announced as regional finalists in the 2016 Countryside Alliance Awards…Kingsland Post Office and Wellington Delights have been named as two of the four Midlands’ finalists in the the village shop/post office category… (story)

Gloucestershire Live 4.4.17 Watch animal rights activists' protests as livestock lorry pulls into abattoir By janethughes - Animal rights demonstrators inspired by a Toronto woman prosecuted for giving water to thirsty pigs on the way to an abattoir have held their first event in Gloucestershire this week. Members of the newly created Gloucestershire Animal Save protested outside Foyle Food Group in Cinderford in an effort to try to comfort cattle on their way in... (story)

GetWestLondon 4.4.17 TK Maxx protest: Cuddly geese toys join demonstration against animal cruelty BY GOOLISTAN COOPER - An animal welfare charity demonstrated outside TK Maxx in Hammersmith with 40 cuddly life-sized geese toys. The Four Paws protest was called to object to the treatment of ducks and geese whose feathers are used to fill its duvets. The 40 stuffed toys represent the 40 animals that the group claim are often tortured, live-plucked or force-fed for the production of one down-filled duvet.

(story)

Burton Mail 4.4.17 Burton's first-ever vegan fair set to attract huge crowds free event at town hall By AOmisoreBM - Folk who shy away from eating or using animal products can revel in the tasty treats on offer at the Burton's first-ever vegan fair.... Kevin White, founder of the Midlands Vegan Campaigns, said: "At the Burton Vegan Fair there will be 40 stalls which will showcase a vast array of vegan food and products including cakes, cheese, chocolate, raw food and a variety of delicious hot meals."... (story)

Irish Times 4.4.17 Irish live cattle exports - Your article on Irish cattle exported to Turkey calls out for immediate action (“Irish cattle slaughtered in conditions ‘breaching EU law’”, April 1st). The graphic images that I have already seen are shocking and include cattle from Ireland being unloaded in Turkey and the Middle East. Unbelievable cruelty.... FRANK KAVANAGH, Greystones, Co Wicklow
Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed must stop live animal exports immediately; cruelty like this cannot be tolerated in Ireland or beyond... CAITRIONA LAWLOR, Mount Merrion, Co Dublin (letter)

3.4.17

Farming Life 3.4.17 CAI attend Alliance conference - Members of Countryside Alliance Ireland (CAI) attended the recent Alliance Party conference in Belfast. They met with party leader Naomi Long On Saturday 25 March... (story)

Herald 3.4.17 MSPs hit out at quango over 'failure to protect woodland' from deer - David Leask - URGENT reform of how Scotland manages its wild deer population is needed amid concerns the animals threaten up to a third of the nation’s native woodland, MSPs have warned. A Holyrood committee has accused quango Scottish Natural Heritage of “failing to provide leadership”... Harry Huyton, director of OneKind, an animal welfare charity, said: “The closed season exists to protect the welfare of deer, including the welfare of dependent and unborn calves... (story)

Surrey Comet 3.4.17 Pressure on Kingston University to drop use of real fur in student fashion collections - Kingston University has come under pressure from students and animal rights organisations to ban its use of real fur in fashion courses after a student union motion against the "cruel" practice was passed. Business management student and US army veteran Simon Plazolles-Hayes led the successful motion at the student union on March 9.... (story)

Basildon Echo 3.4.17 Free our peacocks! Nearly 1,300 people back campaign to let beloved Chalkwell birds roam free - Robyn Pierce - NEARLY 1,300 people have signed a petition calling for peacocks in Chalkwell Park to be freed from their enclosure. The online petition was started by animal rights campaigner Mica Day, from Westcliff, last year - but has continued to gain support as the summer approaches. Labour councillor Julian Ware-Lane believes the birds, which have been an attraction at the park since the Fifties, should be free to roam.... (story)

Mail 3.4.17 Farm worker, 19, who was secretly filmed STAMPING on a calf and KICKING a cow in the head is facing jail after admitting 'unthinkable animal cruelty' By Luke Barnes For Mailonline - A farm apprentice has been told he faces prison for hitting, stamping on and throwing newborn calves. Owen Nichol, 19, kicked cows in the face and shouted,'Come on you f****** t***' before stamping on a newborn calf seven times. The abuse was captured on a covert camera placed in a barn by the charity Animal Equality, Taunton Magistrates' Court in Somerset heard.... (story)

2.4.17

Bucks Free Press 2.4.17 OPINION: Colin Baker - ‘It is important we minimise suffering’ - There is really only any hope for humanity when, collectively and individually, it becomes unthinkable that we inflict pain suffering and death upon each other or the other living creatures with whom we share this fragile planet – for pleasure or reasons other than survival or food... Don’t believe the hunt apologists’ canard that foxes are somehow intrinsically evil... Don’t let the apparent ‘olde English’ look of the hunt fool you into thinking it to be anything other than a shabby anachronism and a reminder of when all life was cheap... (story)

1.4.17

Irish News 1.4.17 Vegan protestors criticised over targeting of small businesses - AN animal rights group has been urged to “think again” over planned demonstrations at small businesses after targeting a series of butcher shops. Vegan organisation Direct Action Everywhere (DEA) disrupted trade at five butchers in Ballymena, Co Antrim, last Saturday and say more protests are planned at other “places of violence” in the coming weeks and months... (story)
Belfast Telegraph 31.3.17 Animal rights protest targets butchers and shoppers in Northern Ireland By Chris McCullough - Animal rights protesters who caused chaos after disrupting a busy shopping afternoon in most of Ballymena's butchers' shops have been condemned. The protesters from Direct Action Everywhere - Northern Ireland went inside the shops chanting "It's not food, it's violence"- much to the dismay of the owners and customers.... While most of the owners asked the protesters to leave the shops peacefully, some customers on the streets took exception to being videoed and having their photos taken... (story)

Mix96 1.4.17 Fears over tactics used by vegan activists at abattoirs and restaurants - The organisation representing the UK's meat industry says it is concerned it is "only a matter of time" before someone is hurt because of violent protests by animal rights groups. The British Meat Processors Association has told Sky News there have been a number of instances of unlawful behaviour during co-ordinated protests which have included abusive and intimidating behaviour towards employees, contractors and hauliers as well as trespassing on private property. Its comments relate to the SAVE organisation - an animal rights group which started in the US but now has more than 20 branches in the UK.... (story)