January 2007

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(*)- added since last update


York Press 31.1.07 Cruel to the fox - WHILE not entirely in agreement with the ban on foxhunting by the Government, for reasons that, as far as I am aware, the fox has no natural predators, I do not agree with what went on at the shoot at Sandringham which included Prince Philip recently. The size of shot used for shooting pheasant would not be used on any creature near resembling the size of a fox by any responsible shooter…. Bob Waite, Holgate, York (letter)

Newcastle Evening Chronicle 31.1.07 Six in court for badger bloodsport By Peter Taylor, The Evening Chronicle - Five men and a teenager will face a court after an alleged badger-baiting ring was smashed by police… Operation Rushford was launched in the Cramlington area in October 2005, in co-ordination with the RSPCA's special operations unit…. Those charged with conspiracy to hunt wild mammals with dogs between February 18, 2005, and March 13 last year, are Alan Walton, 51, of Avebury Place; Brian James Cole, 30, from Avebury Place; Sean Dilger, 26, from Alderley Way; and Lee Lawton, 37, from Avebury Place, all of Cramlington. Also charged are Wayne Lannen, 23, from Coniston Road, Wallsend, and a 17-year-old boy from the Cramlington area…. (story)

Guardian 31.1.07 Diary - Jon Henley - …In court this week, upstanding animal rights group Speak - which has campaigned so assiduously against Oxford University's planned animal research lab - objected most strenuously to the idea that it might surrender its list of members lest "Oxford University send official emails threatening law-abiding members of the public". Happily once more, this Speak is not the same irresponsible bunch that publishes on its website the email addresses of individuals working for companies that back the £18m lab… Of course not…. (story)

Derby Evening Telegraph 31.1.07 PROUD OF MY ANIMAL RECORD - Judi Hewitt (Evening Telegraph, January 1) gets hot under the collar when I point out that many people who object to using animal fur seem perfectly happy to eat meat and wear leather shoes. She says: "These animals are not killed for food but are killed purely for vanity." So it's all right to be cruel to animals if you are hungry?... The moral question is about animal welfare, not which part of the animal we use, and for what purpose…. Roger Helmer, Conservative MEP. (story)
Derby Evening Telegraph 1.1.07 UPSET OVER MEP SARCASM - I Read with disgust East Midlands MEP Roger Helmer's sarcastic comments regarding his view on fur. I would just like to tell Mr Helmer that animals killed for fur are not killed for food but are killed purely for vanity.... Judi Hewitt, Rhyl, Denbighshire. (letter)
Derby Evening Telegraph 19.12.06 IN DEFENCE OF WEARING FUR - I Was proud to support the recent move in the European parliament to ban the importation of cat and dog fur.... There is nothing wrong with fur garments so long as the animals were killed humanely and were not from endangered species. Animal rights fanatics who get splenetic over fur coats should remember that the majority of people in this country wear leather shoes, many have leather bags and leather seats in their cars, and most are happy to eat meat. Where is the moral difference between a leather handbag and a fur coat?... Roger Helmer, Conservative MEP for Derbyshire. (letter)


Western Daily Press 30.1.07 HUNT OFFICIAL IS FINED £80 - A hunt steward has been fined £80 for using threatening behaviour towards two hunt monitors on Boxing Day. Mervyn Dowell, a steward for Cotley Harriers, harassed and threatened League Against Cruel Sports monitor Graham Forsythe and Helen Weeks from Protect Our Wild Animals, as they attempted to video the Harriers near Yeovil…. (story)

Western Morning News 30.1.07 ONE LAW FOR US, ANOTHER FOR THEM? - I believe that if I had a child who was still at school, and I wanted to take photographs of him/her taking part in a school play, sports day or swimming gala, I would need first to obtain the permission of the parents of all other children who might be included in the photograph.Can someone explain to me why this requirement does not appear to apply to hunt monitors… Peter Guy, Halifax (letter)

Gloucestershire Echo 30.1.07 OTIS IS LUCKY TO STILL BE DRIVING - I agree with the two previous correspondents that Otis Ferry was fortunate not to receive a 12-month disqualification after he was found guilty of drink driving… I haven't been drunk all that often, but in my experience the sensation is fairly unmistakable. Having been handed a fine plus expenses which, for someone in his circumstances, won't amount to a burden, maybe Mr Ferry will reflect on his choice of friends… John Ricketts,Lynworth (letter)

Mid Devon Gazette 30.1.07 SHOULD THE HUNTING BAN BE REVIEWED? - A recent letter regarding the spin on the popularity of hunting raises some interesting points.I had assumed that because the hunters keep telling us hunting is even more popular in spite of the ban, that this was due to drag hunting replacing a cruel blood sport and more people were attending because they preferred this to persecuting a wild animal. If this is not the case, then can we assume these hunters are breaking the law by continuing to pursue a live animal with packs of hounds? So are the hunters telling porkies or is it really because drag hunting is more popular?... NAME AND ADDRESS SUPPLIED. (letter)

Western Mail 30.1.07 Assembly inquiry into farm 'bird pit' - Steve Dube, Western Mail -THE National Assembly is investigating possible breaches of public health at a Welsh game farm. The move follows the discovery of rotting bird carcasses and their eggs in a pit at the Beulah Shoot near Llanwrtyd Wells… The pit was discovered by Kit Davidson, of the International Fund for Animal Welfare, who investigated after noticing crows circling overhead…. (story)
Wales on Sunday 28.1.07 Health probe into animal 'death pit' - Catherine Mary. Evans, Wales on Sunday - Countryside Minister Carwyn Jones launched the probe after a wildlife crime investigator for the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS) claimed he stumbled upon the 6ft-deep grave while walking along a public footpath in Beulah, near Llantwrtyd Wells. "It was last spring and I was walking on a footpath. I was alerted to its presence by the stench of rotting carcasses which I could smell from the footpath. I just followed my nose," he said…. (story)
Farmers Weekly 23.1.07 Illegal poultry disposal in Wales - The discovery of a heap of rotting bird carcasses in South Wales has highlighted the possible disease risk of illegal animal disposal to livestock businesses. This latest case of mass dumping of game birds was discovered in a pit in Beulah by the League Against Cruel Sports. The former veterinary advisor to the Welsh Office, John Campbell said, “What is worrying is that we do not know what caused these birds’ deaths…. by Richard Allison (story)
Meat Info 12.1.07 Dumped rotting gamebird carcases pose risk to human health - Gamebird carcases have been found rotting in a ditch in Beulah, South Wales, prompting Welsh Assembly member Peter Black to ask Carwyn Jones, minister for the countryside, what can be done about the risk to human health…. The discovery has led to an investigation into the mass dumping of gamebird carcases and their eggs at the Beulah Shoot, near Llanwrtyd Wells, by investigators from the League Against Cruel Sports…. (story)

Western Morning News 30.1.07 DOWNSIDE OF THOSE BIG SHOTS - I read with interest Philip Bowern's article (January 20) concerning shooting, corporate style… As someone living in a fairly rural community (albeit little more rural than that of the residents of Yelverton or Horrabridge), where regular shooting takes place, I am absolutely certain there is little gained by the vast majority of local inhabitants from the Company Big Shots (as he chooses to call them) who pursue this activity…. Michael R Spry, Yelverton (letter)

Aberdeen Press & Journal 30.1.07 Policy on airguns - It might seem strange for the UK's shooting organisation to welcome proposals (the Press and Journal, January 25) from an Aberdeen City councillor to introduce a ban on air weapons in the city, but a brief discussion reveals how aligned Councillor Norman Collie is with the views of the British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC)…. BASC Scotland's viewpoint is that we need better education and enforcement of existing legislation - precisely the motivation behind the councillor's comments. Mr Collie also commented that he would not want to see responsible users of airguns affected… James Scott, British Association for Shooting and Conservation Scotland, Trochry, Dunkeld. (story)

Western Mail 30.1.07 Cast your mind over what angling clubs do for Wales - Moc Morgan, Western Mail - Not many people realise the important part angling clubs have played in Wales…. Throughout the years, many clubs in Wales have been able to benefit from the grant aid that was at one time available from the Sports Council…. One is very proud of the part angling clubs play in helping and promoting young anglers…. Local clubs are also very supportive of disabled anglers and rejoice at seeing them succeed at national and international disabled events… (story)

Western Mail 30.1.07 The local economy needs diversity - I refer to the article"Rights to River Access"… Paddy Rooney's point about flouting the law is hardly an argument for changing it…. Again the subject of cost arises, and this I believe is the major concern of those who have to pay it. I want only to pass over water, not to set out to kill or snare fish, nor do I want to cull other animals, which may reduce fish stocks…. BOB ANDREWS, BrynhyfrydLlanddarog,Carmarthen (story)

Northern Echo 30.1.07 FOIE GRAS - WHILE the City of York Council takes its time to consider the motion to ban foie gras (Echo, Jan 26), ducks and geese will suffer some of the worst cruelties imaginable…. Will Wright, PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) Europe Ltd, London. (letter)

Independent 30.1.07 Let's put ethical food on the menu - There is no need for Véronique Knighton (letter, 27 January) to worry yet that York restaurants will be unable to serve her foie gras. The council did not debate the proposal. As for her contention that the producers "have great respect for their animals", many would consider forcing tubes down the gullets of geese and ducks, feeding them massive amounts of food they do not need, in order to produce a huge abnormal liver, a very strange way of showing respect…. MARIAN HUSSENBUX, ARROWE PARK, WIRRAL (letter)

Times 30.1.07 Battle of Trafalgar Square takes wing - MARCUS LEROUX - Ken Livingstone’s war on pigeons reached court yesterday as an animal-rights group claimed that he had reneged on a contract to cut bird numbers by reducing their feed. The Save the Trafalgar Square Pigeons group say that Mr Livingstone, the Mayor of London, broke a 2002 contract, under which the pigeons would continue to be fed but in reduced quantities…. (story)
Independent 12.12.06 Pigeon lovers sue Mayor over feeding ban By Arifa Akbar - It has been called the modern-day "Battle of Trafalgar" and has pitted pigeon lovers in the capital's most famous square against Ken Livingston. Now the fight to feed the pigeons is being taken to the law courts. Campaigners issued legal proceedings against the Mayor yesterday in an attempt to force him to allow the feeding of the 1,500 birds. The Save The Trafalgar Square Pigeons action group said they had fed the birds daily at 7.30am, with Mr Livingstone's agreement, since 2002… Ann Mann, the group's spokeswoman, said campaigners had been reassured that the feeding programme would be reduced without starving the birds. "It's unacceptable that the birds should starve to death," she said… (story)
Independent 12.12.06 The Third Leader: Bird brains By Charles Nevin - Few assignments are so fraught with crossfire-catching potential as one that puts the commentator in Trafalgar Square among the Mayor of London and the pigeons.... The novelty value of the fox is diminished, as is the plight of the sparrow. But pigeons: don't get them started.... (story)
Guardian 12.12.06 Trafalgar Square pigeon protesters plan new action against mayor - Hugh Muir - The pigeons of Trafalgar Square will have their day in court as animal rights activists try to force Ken Livingstone to continue their feeding, it emerged yesterday.... The Save the Trafalgar Square Pigeons Action Group claims Mr Livingstone has indirectly caused the deaths of thousands of birds through starvation... (story)


Exeter Express & Echo 29.1.07 HUNT DEBATE COULD SCUPPER CAMERON - Reading Sally Wilcox's letter Hunts should look for happy medium, Points of view, January 24, I got a strange sense of deja vue.Haven't we had this conversation before? Isn't it understood that a hunt which only chased the ill or infirm would be a very short affair?... The fact is that if in three years' time Tory leader David Cameron is still fighting the last election, he will lose again. G R Holwill, Stoke Hill Crescent, Exeter (story)
Exeter Express & Echo 24.1.07 HUNTS SHOULD LOOK FOR HAPPY MEDIUM - In reply to G R Holwill's letter Points of view, January 10, about fox hunting, my father has always said the reason Labour banned fox hunting is class hatred… The ideal solution is the happy medium - the fox hunt should go ahead but not for one hour as that's cruel…. Foxes suffer more if someone shoots them… Sally Wilcox, Guinness Lane, Exeter (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 20.1.07 HUNTING FAN MISSED THE POINT OF LETTER - Giles Bradshaw has a record of missing the point of the hunting ban, so it's perhaps no surprise that he missed the point of my letter, Backing hunting is not route to power, Points of view, January 10.I have no interest in his political inclination but I do feel the British electorate should have a fair choice of government at the next election…. It's one thing to preserve the status quo, quite another to actively campaign for something most people believe to be cruel and unnecessary…. G R Holwill, Stoke Hill Crescent, Exeter(by fax) (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 16.1.07 ALLIANCE IS HEADED BY A LABOUR MP - GR Holwill talks about "Giles Bradshaw and the Countryside Alliance's support for David Cameron's Tory Party" in his letter Backing hunting is not route to power, Points of view, January 10. He is wrong on both counts. The Countryside Alliance is a non-party political organisation and is headed by a Labour MP, I have never voted Conservative in my life… Giles Bradshaw, Rose Ash, South Molton (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 10.1.07 BACKING HUNTING IS NOT ROUTE TO POWER - It's tempting to believe that, with a majority of only 65, it's possible for Labour to lose the next election.... It seems to me that Giles Bradshaw and the Countryside Alliance's support for David Cameron's Tory Party is a bit of a poison chalice. If Mr Cameron is serious about winning the next election, he will kick the Hunting Bill into the long grass now.... G R Holwill, Stoke Hill Crescent, Exeter (letter)

The Shields Gazette 29.1.07 Say no to animal testing - While the workings of the European Parliament are not usually a concern for most residents of South Tyneside, I'm convinced readers will be outraged when they hear about a new piece of legislation to be passed in a few weeks, called REACH. That's because it could see a return to testing cosmetic ingredients on animals…. Laura Stewart, aged 16, Hebburn (letter)

Bath Chronicle 29.1.07 MY FURY AT THE ONGOING FUR TRADE - Re: your recent story about the anti-fur protest in the city.Thank you for bringing this piece of news to the attention of Bath people and people like myself who often come to shop in the city. I am so dismayed that this evil trade has started up again…. JENNY MANN, Windsor Terrace, Bristol (story)

Western Daily Press 29.1.07 HUNTERS NOT VILLAINS - Congratulations to the RSPB spokesman who clearly displayed great patience in dealing with the ignorant phone call chronicled by June Payne of Warminster… Attacks on sparrowhawks feature with depressing frequency in your newspaper… And why, precisely, should the Countryside Alliance be represented on the committee of a conservation organisation? Brian Hill, Creech St Michael, Somerset (letter)


Sunday Telegraph 28.1.07 Lines upon the death of a Sandringham fox - I have rarely read such bias and inflammatory nonsense as your report of a fox being shot during a shoot attended by the Duke of Edinburgh… The fox was clearly shot but there appears to be no evidence that it wasn't killed instantly as many animals twitch when dead…. Mark Elliott, CEO, National Organisation of Beaters and Pickers Up, Amesbury, Wiltshire
I was appalled by your report of the death of a fox at Sandringham…. Patricia Hunt, Westcliff-On-Sea, Essex
Perhaps the animal rights campaigners who complained about the killing of the fox at Sandringham would have enjoyed burying the pet goose belonging to my son's family… B C Holdsworth, Betchworth, Surrey (letters)

Sunday Times 28.1.07 Killer foxes - IT IS NOT unusual to control vermin by shooting them, but it was, I felt, unusual that this should be considered newsworthy (Pest control — Sandringham style, News, last week). Foxes are a pest to game birds and protected species alike… Mike Taylor, Market Drayton, Shropshire
SWIFT MERCY: What would Maurice Chittenden prefer the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh to do with an injured bird or animal — leave it to die slowly? Katharine Howard by e-mail
BAN CRUELTY: I cannot believe that although Prince Philip is the patron of the WWF he allowed such an act of cruelty to take place…. Debbie Gaynor, Wigan, Lancashire (letters)

Sunday Mirror 28.1.07 EXCLUSIVE: CHELSY UNDER FIRE FOR JOINING BIG GAME BASH - Paul Henderson In Reno, Nevada - PRINCE Harry's girlfriend Chelsy Davy was blasted by animal rights campaigners last night - for attending a convention promoting big game hunting in Africa…. Last night Tim Phillips, of Animal Defenders International, said: "Safari Club is a group who are happy to hunt and kill pretty much any animal that moves…. (story)

Sunday Telegraph 28.1.07 Animal rights 'martyr' inspires extremists to new bomb campaign By Andrew Alderson, Chief Reporter, Sunday Telegraph - A group of animal rights extremists has begun a terror campaign in memory of a "martyr" who died in a prison hunger strike. Detectives are trying to identify the group which has already carried out a series of firebomb attacks in the name of Barry Horne, who was described as an "urban terrorist" by the judge who jailed him. A letter bomb sent to a firm in Oxfordshire earlier this month included a note which read: "If not delivered, return to Dr Barry Horne RIP", The Sunday Telegraph has learnt…. (story)

BBC News Online 28.1.07 Gang steals van with rescued pets - An animal rescue worker said he has been left sickened after a gang of youths stole an ambulance full of pets. The gang stole the vehicle after a Freshfields Animal centre officer dropped his keys during a delivery in Stockbridge village, Merseyside…. David Callender, manager of the centre, said he was taking two cats back to their owners when he dropped his keys. "The next thing I knew a gang of kids were around the van waving the keys at me and laughing…. (story)
BBC News Online 27.1.07 Van full of cats and dogs stolen - An animal rescue ambulance full of cats and dogs has been stolen in Merseyside… The vehicle is owned by the Freshfields Animal Rescue Centre, based in Ince Blundell, Liverpool. Volunteer Sue Brown said the animals were likely to be frightened and urged anyone with information to contact Merseyside Police…. (story)


Western Daily Press 27.1.07 MENDIP HUNTERS SET A CHALLENGE - Mendip Farmers' Hunt members are hoping one of their own will triumph at this year's hunt chase on Saturday, March 31, which was won for the third time last year by the Avon Vale's Simon Coady.Setting off from the hunt kennels at Priddy at 10.30am, the race, over 19 obstacles including stone walls, hedges and timber, will be split into two sections, one for ponies under 14.2hh and the second for those over 14.2hh… (story)

Western Daily Press 27.1.07 HURRY ALONG TO CATCH HUNT'S SCURRY - Tedworth Hunt Scurry on February 25, is described as a "good, old fashioned steeplechase".Open to all, and split into three classes for ladies, under 18s and open riders over 16, the scurry is run over three miles with around 18 fences…. (story)

Western Daily Press 27.1.07 MAKING A SPLASH IN PURSUIT OF GOLD PRIZE - Even the mud, wind and driving rain could not deter competitors at the Ledbury Hunt Golden Button Ride on New Year's Eve.The hunt set out to stage a traditional point-to-point - quite literally from one point to another across country. "It's how jump racing first began," explained the Ledbury's joint master, David Redvers. "A few idiots decided over dinner to ride as fast as they could across country. It's quite different from a few circuits around a racecourse…. "A lot of people fell off, but that's quite normal. And we ended up raising more than £5,000 for the county's Air Ambulance Trust."… (story)

Western Daily Press 27.1.07 FOX-HUNT IMAGE STILL WITH ME 60 YEARS ON - I, too, am over 60 and born and brought up in the country.We are the generation whose parents took in the refugees from the wartime bombing. We ate rabbits shot by the locals… For sure, though, if the hunt, that we rarely saw, got a fox, the mood would have been celebratory. They were defending our food supply. Charles Henry, Somerset (letter)
Western Daily Press 23.1.07 FOX-HUNT IMAGE OF CRUELTY IS STILL WITH ME 60 YEARS ON - 08:00 - 23 January 2007 I am a resident who hates the hunt coming each Boxing Day to Lacock. There are a few of us who can remember the old days as kids (in the 1940s), when we used to go across the fields around Lacock. I was six years old and my first encounter with the hunt and hounds was by a land drain in a lane from Lacock to Gastard. They had chased the fox into a land drain… When it came out, the master of the hunt used his whip to trap the fox further. The fox was picked up by the scruff of its neck and its stomach was slit open. They cut the heart out and fed it to the hounds, and cut the tail off then daubed it in the fox blood and patted it on to the young members of the hunt…. The ones afraid to speak now have a voice; there are still many people who were children in the 1940s and lived among them and their cruelty then, and 60 years have gone on and it's still with us…. Miss R Palmer, Lacock, Wiltshire (story)

Western Daily Press 27.1.07 DRIVER GOT OFF FERRY LIGHTLY - I Was shocked to read that rock star Bryan Ferry's son escaped a drink-driving ban after claiming he was given three glasses of treble vodkas when he requested single measures… Ferry is a renegade and was one of a number of people who stormed the House of Commons in 2005 in a pro-hunt protest which he has vowed to continue, although hunting is banned… G H Cowmeadow Ross-on-Wye Herefordshire (letter)

Fermanagh Herald 27.1.07 avian flu - The autumn arrangements to screen wild birds for the presence of highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza have been announced. The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) programme, being introduced for the autumn migration of water birds, will have three main elements… The department has been working closely with the Environment and Heritage Service, Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, British Association for Shooting and Conservation and Countryside Alliance, who are helping to deliver the programme… (story)

Independent 27.1.07 Collapse in support for animal rights extremist attacks By Ian Herbert - The animal rights movement's disinterment of an elderly woman's remains, designed to demonstrate the lengths activists would go to halt experimentation, has contributed to the collapse of the movement's campaign of intimidation, two years after it seemed to be forcing British pharmaceutical firms overseas… The reduction in animal rights attacks is, in part, attributable to the conviction of ringleaders, half of whom are now in jail.. (story)
Times 24.1.07 Fewer protests - Attacks by animal rights extremists fell last year, the Association of the British Pharmaceutical Industry said…. (story)

Burton Mail 27.1.07 MP joins bear fur hats protest by James Benstead - NORTH West Leicestershire’s MP has joined political colleagues outside the Houses of Parliament in protest against the use of real bear fur in making hats for the Queen’s guards. David Taylor was one of dozens of cross-party MPs to gather in London wearing faux bearskin caps emblazoned with a 'No Fur’ logo in a bid to stop the cull of Canadian black bears, whose skins are fashioned into ceremonial caps for the Five Guards’ regiments. They and People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are calling on the Queen, HRH Prince Charles and the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to consider ditching real bear pelts in favour of headpieces made from luxurious fake fur… (story)

Western Daily Press 27.1.07 IF WE WORK TOGETHER WE CAN SOLVE LYNTON'S GOAT PROBLEM - Having been involved with the campaign to stop the proposed cull of Lynton's famous feral goats back in 2005, it's disappointing to see that once again some locals are calling for them to be shot.This is the first winter that the fence and cattle grid - which it was hoped would solve the problem of straying goats, as well as ponies and, eventually, sheep - have been in place…. As the council also helped fund the fence and grid scheme - with taxpayers' money - surely it should think twice before declaring the scheme a failure so soon and try to solve these problems in a creative rather than a destructive way. Jan Hunt Box Wiltshire (story)


Kent/East Sussex Courier/Sevenoaks Chronicle 26.1.07 INTO THE WILD WITH FOXES BY SARAH HARRINGTON - Catching a glimpse of a fox in the wild with its striking red fur and beady eyes is as close as most people come to the creature. But for volunteers at a little known charity dedicated to the fox in Southborough, it is an every day occurrence…. The Fox Project, based in Draper Street, began 20 years ago as an information bureau with three members who were inspired to run a fox rescue network after being involved in the relief of stricken wildlife at the Shetland oil spill disaster. "This was our turning point," said the charity's director Trevor Williams…"The majority who dislike foxes have an agenda like foxhunters or gamekeepers."… One well-known volunteer for the charity is retired engineer Mike Towler, 74, of Trottiscliffe, who has in his care a domesticated fox called Cropper… (story)

Western Morning News 26.1.07 EXEMPT HUNTING DATES (story)

Western Daily Press 26.1.07 Blood lust now turning to cats - If R M Morris is concerned about the conservation and cruelty aspects of hunting, he should campaign for a law preventing or regulating it… Giles Bradshaw, Devon
Note that word again everybody! "Estimate". Just who are these "estimators", I wonder?... Just another fabrication from the lunatic fringe. Charles Henry, Somerset (letters)
Western Daily Press 25.1.07 BLOOD LUST NOW TURNING TO CATS - Cat lovers and owners beware: alarming statistics estimate that 9,000 "feral" cats were shot in one year. This tally did not include cats shot and snared by gamekeepers and others during their work… Is there no end to the hunting fraternity's blood lust? The fox, the deer, the squirrel, the mole, the badger and many birds of prey, even swans, and now cats are on their hit list… R M Morris Minehead Somerset (letter)

Western Daily Press 26.1.07 HUNTING BAN HAS NOT HALTED ANIMAL ABUSE - I read that 12 people were arrested because of disruption to companies associated with animal research. I feel these people have a right to voice their views on the subject of animal cruelty. The police are quick to arrest animal rights groups while they're not at all interested in bringing the Countryside Alliance into the courts…. Norah Pound, Wroughton, Wiltshire (letter)

Times 26.1.07 Shoots, eats, leaves - ANDREW BILLEN - Shooting game has replaced gardening as the preferred leisure activity for businessmen. Our correspondent tries it for a day in the killing fields of Suffolk… (story)
Times 26.1.07 What it costs to go a-hunting - Syndicate shooting: where a group of people get together to rent land from one or more landowners (who may be estate owners or farmers) on a yearly basis. Syndicates might employ a keeper, or a syndicate member might keep the land himself. The cost to the syndicate is around £20,000 a season… (story)

Belfast Telegraph 26.1.07 To dock or not - While Mr Pollen of the British Association of Shooting and Conservation in Northern Ireland is keen to have the tails of working dogs docked in case they are injured, he is incorrect on one point. The tails of security dogs, such as springer spaniels doing drug detection, are not all docked…. Davina Walshe Croydon, Surrey (letter)
Belfast Telegraph 26.1.07 Dogs don't deserve such a sorry tail - Roger Pollen of the BASC makes an animal welfare case (Writeback, Janunary 22) because there is a possibility that gun dogs won't have their tails docked…. In reality, as a member of the BASC, he likes to turn birds and animals into a bloodied mess with his shotgun, as he indulges in 'sport' with his mutilated dogs. RICHARD SPENCER Randalstown (letter)
Belfast Telegraph 22.1.07 Working dogs and sorry tails - None of our MPs or MLAs would deliberately smash a dog's tail and leave it a bloodied mess. Yet the current review of animal welfare legislation for Northern Ireland is examining the issue of tail docking for dogs, and a ban on this practice for working dogs could mean exactly that fate for tens of thousands of animals in the province…. ROGER POLLEN Director, BASC NI (letter)

Western Morning News 26.1.07 IT is good to see such widespread support for MP Nick Hurd's attempts to get more power to local communities via his Sustainable Communities Bill… Simon Hart, Chief Executive Countryside Alliance (letter)
Peterborough Evening Telegraph 24.1.07 Bill offers hope for people power - It is good to see such widespread support for MP Nick Hurd's attempts to get more power to local communities via his Private Members Bill, the Sustainable Communities Bill…. The Countryside Alliance hopes that the Government has the will to trust communities to take sensible decisions as opposed to insisting that civil servants in Whitehall know best. Simon Hart, Chief Executive, Countryside Alliance (letter)

BBC News Online 26.1.07 Students oppose animal test plans - Students at a university campus in Kent have expressed concern over plans for a pharmaceutical research laboratory which could include animal testing. The development has been confirmed at the Medway School of Pharmacy, run by the universities of Greenwich and Kent. A group of environmental science students e-mailed BBC South East saying they were "completely against" the plans, and feared a security risk…. (story)

Petersfield Post 26.1.07 Buy British to help veal campaigners - As a rapidly growing farm animal welfare charity Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) has enjoyed having its headquarters based in Petersfield. However, our ongoing expansion to counter the global growth in factory farming has had the effect that our office in Petersfield has become too small for us. Our new international headquarters are now based in Godalming, Surrey…. continental veal will often be raised significantly differently to British veal…. In the UK it is illegal to keep calves without bedding. CIWF advises anyone wishing to buy veal, to buy British and preferably Soil Association organic standard veal, which encourages farmers to give calves access to the outdoors…. (letter)

Henley Standard 26.1.07 Say 'no' to foie gras - Sally Paton Ker, Hurley. (letter may be in archive)
Shropshire Star 17.1.07 Keep foie gras off the menu - P Watkins, Ludlow (letter)
Harrogate Advertiser 5.1.07 Please think twice before tucking into fois gras From: Joan Silvester, Blair Park, Knaresborough - MANY of your readers may be aware of the unspeakable cruelty involved in the production of foie gras... (letter)
Surrey Mirror 27.12.06 Let's not duck the issue of foie gras - MOST of your readers will be aware of the unspeakable cruelty involved in the production of foie gras. Together we can use our consumer power to say no to this product.... If you notice foie gras on the menu or in the shops please speak to the manager about its production and then contact Compassion in World Farming... Sonia Rundle-Odds Cheyne Walk, Horley (story)
Harrogate Advertiser 29.12.06 The cruelty behind foie gras From: Joan Silvester, Blair Park, Knaresborough. MANY of your readers may be aware of the unspeakable cruelty involved in the production of foie gras... If you want full information, it can be obtained from Compassion in World Farming... (letter)

Bradford Telegraph & Argus 27.1.07 Fighting meat free - Labour Euro MP Robert Evans has launched a campaign to ban bullfighting across Europe (T&A, January 19). While not condoning this "abhorrent entertainment" it might interest readers to know that in Spain at least bull rings have abattoirs that prepare all the carcasses and give the meat free to hospitals. David Rhodes, Croscombe Walk, Bradford (letter)

Bradford Telegraph & Argus 27.1.07 Children can be vegetarian... While being pleased that Bradford firm Mumtaz is doing well (T&A, January 23), I would question the assertion by director Rab Nawaz, right, that infants have slower average mental development if they are not fed meat. There are millions of vegetarian children all over the world, including my daughter and her cousins in India, who have not had any adverse problems because of their diet…. Cynthia Trasi, Kirkgate, Shipley (letter)


Telegraph 25.1.07 Tail of town 'n' country - Today's Mr Fox has it pretty good, says Max Davidson - "Aren't they cute?" "Yuk! They're vermin!" Opinion was sharply divided when a pair of foxes put in an unscripted appearance at my parents' house in Wimbledon…. Perhaps this is the shape of things to come? Foxes proliferating like rabbits in the wake of the hunting ban and drifting to the towns in search of food? If anecdotal evidence is anything to go by, the numbers seem to be rising sharply… (story)

North Devon Journal 25.1.07 WRONG TO LABEL THESE GROUPS AS VIGILANTES - It is wrong for D W Almond to try to label hunt monitors as 'vigilantes' (letters, January 11, 2007).The definition of 'vigilante' is someone who takes the law into his own hands by trying and/or punishing another without legal authority. This term cannot be used to describe the work of LACS and IFAW hunt monitors because they do not interfere with the hunts' activities… GILL PURSER, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire (letter)
North Devon Journal 25.1.07 SUPPORT NOT CONDEMN - D w ALMOND'S comments were the same old tosh put out before the ban. Does he/she not know that according to the Countryside Alliance there were no jobs lost… JUDI HEWITT, Hadley Crescent, Rhyl. (letter)
North Devon Journal 25.1.07 LEAVE WILDLIFE ALONE INSTEAD - In the letters section (January 11 edition), D W Almond declares that hunt monitors should leave the hunters alone and instead concentrate on illegal immigrants etc.Then perhaps the hunters would like to leave our wildlife alone and chase the many felons at large?... DAVE WALDEN, Lee Road, Lynton. (letter)
North Devon Journal 11.1.07 DO THESE TWO GROUPS REALLY HAVE THE RIGHT? - I have always understood that the forces of law and order in this country were fundamentally opposed to vigilantes, as groups or as individuals. How then can the LACS and the IFAW claim to be working with the police and the crown prosecution service to monitor hunting? Have the chief constable and the director of the CPS given approval to the activities of these self-appointed guardians of a specific Act of Parliament?... Since these organisations seem to seek to destroy the livelihoods of thousands of countrymen, perhaps the tables could be turned by publishing details of any businesses involving their members and the legal practices supporting them, so that we in turn can withhold our custom from those enterprises. D W ALMOND, Pixie Dell, Braunton. (story)

Irish Independent 25.1.07 Another side to hunting - "There is a side to hunting that you will never see portrayed in the paintings that adorn many a hallway around the country," wrote hunting enthusiast Caitriona Murphy (Irish Independent, January 16). One side to hunting that will certainly never be seen in these paintings is the cruelty meted out to the defenceless victims…. AIDEEN YOURELL, IRISH COUNCIL AGAINST BLOOD SPORTS, PO BOX 88, MULLINGAR (story)

Glasgow Herald 25.1.07 Campaigners welcome city’s bid for first UK ban on airguns - ALISON CHIESA - A Scottish city could be the first in the UK to ban airguns under new proposals. A motion to outlaw the weapons will be considered by councillors in Aberdeen, in a move welcomed by gun control campaigners… (story)
Scotsman 25.1.07 Airgun ban move - ABERDEEN councillors will next month consider a motion to outlaw airguns in the city… (story)
Aberdeen Press & Journal 24.1.07 NORTH-EAST LEADS WAY WITH AIRGUN VOTE ON BAN - KIRSTY URQUHART - Airguns could be outlawed in Aberdeen in a Scottish first, the Press and Journal can reveal. City councillors will be asked to consider a total ban on the weapons and on ball-bearing guns in a bid to end the attacks on people and animals. Seaton Councillor Norman Collie is putting forward a motion at the next full council meeting on February 28 asking for members to agree to a city-wide restriction…. (story)

Essex Echo 25.1.07 Foxes are a real cause of distress for us - The wildlife worker is out of touch with the reality of the distress that is being caused to so many people by foxes… We and all our neighbours now think some action should be taken. R Belcher, Clarence Close, Benfleet (letter)
Essex Echo 25.1.07 Handy tips to banish all those noisy foxes By Christine Sexton - A wildlife worker has offered some handy hints on keeping noisy foxes at bay, after residents complained of being plagued by the howling animals. Veronica Mepham, who runs the Rescuers Wildlife Sanctuary, in Benfleet, said there were plenty of quick and easy ways to banish burrowing foxes from back gardens…. (story)

Swindon Advertiser 25.1.07 Activists are also in prison - I have to disagree with Barry Woodham (SA, January 19) when he states that the only people in prison are thieves and felons. There is a third category, animal rights activists. They have not transgressed the laws of society but are banged up for their beliefs. The organisers of the Save The Newchurch Guinea Pigs campaign are serving long sentences, as are a number of the Stop Huntingdon animal cruelty group… P BEAVEN. Upper Stratton (letter)

Edinburgh Evening News 25.1.07 Vote on ban of foie gras after cruelty claims - York: Councillors were voting today on whether to stop restaurants selling foie gras on the grounds of animal cruelty… (story)
Independent 24.1.07 Councillor tries to remove 'cruel' foie gras from city restaurants menus By Robert Verkaik, Law Editor - The French love it so much that they have introduced laws to ensure it is protected as part of their gastronomic heritage…Councillors in York will to be asked tomorrow to remove foie gras from the menus of all the city's restaurants. It would be the first restriction of its kind in Britain. Paul Blanchard, the Labour councillor leading the campaign, has described the force-feeding of ducks and geese, essential to the preparation of foie gras, as torture… (story)
Yorkshire Post 24.1.07 CITY CONSIDERS 'CRUEL' FOIE GRAS BAN - Julie Hemmings - YORK could become the first city in the UK to ban foie gras amid concerns about cruelty in the way it is produced. A motion goes before tomorrow night's full city council meeting proposing to "discourage or prohibit" the sale of the delicacy in shops and restaurants in York… Paul Blanchard, the York councillor calling for the ban, also wants the council to press the Government to block the sale of foie gras in the UK… (story)

East Grinstead Courier 25.1.07 TESTS UNCOVER UNLABELLED FUR - Shoppers in Lingfield are being warned they may be buying real fur on the high street, Surrey County Council Trading Standards has warned…. The county council is working with campaigners Respect for Animals to lobby the Government to introduce labelling to help consumers make an informed choice said trading standards officer Peter Denard. (story)

Banbury Guardian 25.1.07 FUR FLIES OVER MAYOR'S ROBE - CONCERN has been expressed at a decision to buy a new mayoral robe made of real fur. Brackley Town Council is to replace its current robe with a £1,020 garment which uses musquash, the term for muskrat fur. But the decision has sparked early debate in the town. Rachel Ogunremi, 20, of Manor Road said: "I'm really angry, you are killing something that doesn't want to be killed when you could use fake fur!"… (story)

Surrey Mirror 25.1.07 Animal rights group attacks restaurants foie gras By Jolene Hill - A FOOD DELICACY also known as "torture in a tin" could be off Reigate's fine dining menu if animal welfare campaigners have their way. Pressure group Viva! has written to celebrity chef Tony Tobin, who runs The Dining Room, in Reigate High Street, and to French eatery La Barbe, in Bell Street, asking them to scrap foie gras… Viva! campaigns manager Justin Kerswell, who comes from Guildford, said: "Foie gras is torture in a tin…." (story)

Southern Reporter 25.1.07 Farm boss says he received phone threats before mysterious blaze by BOB BURGESS - EGG baron John Campbell has revealed he received personal threats just days before a suspicious blaze at one of his poultry farms. Fire investigators and detectives have launched a probe to determine if it was started deliberately. So far their investigations are inconclusive – but Mr Campbell believes there can be no other cause for the outbreak at Hamilton Hill Farm near Romanno Bridge…(story)


Keighley News 24.1.07 Beagle ‘hunts’ flourishing in spite of national ban - Some pastimes are "hare" today, gone tomorrow, but the Airedale Beagles are going from strength to strength despite the hunting ban. Located at Crag Top Farm, near the summit of Silsden Moor, known locally as The Nab, the pack of 45 beagles is as fit and healthy as ever…. (story)

Galway Independent 24.1.07 Government in better position to advise what's best for wildlife when it bans hare coursing - I notice that Environment Minister Dick Roche has appealed to developers, builders, farmers, and local authorities to cease or curtail developments that decimate wildlife. I would respect and admire the Minister's concern for Ireland's endangered flora and fauna if it weren't for a glaring oversight on the part of successive governments to halt one of the most shameful wildlife abuses of all: live hare coursing… John Fitzgerald, Lower Coyne Street, Callan, Co. Kilkenny (story)

Guardian 24.1.07 Independent report clears track despite spate of deaths - Tony Paley - Wolverhampton racecourse, where seven horses have been killed since early November, has been given a clean bill of health in an independent study, the Horseracing Regulatory Authority revealed yesterday…. The track had come under severe criticism from the charity Animal Aid following five fatalities in the space of six weeks before Christmas…. (story)
Wolverhampton Express & Star 22.12.06 Experts hit at further racing By Daniel Pountney - The decision to allow racing to continue in Wolverhampton after a string of horse deaths was today condemned by experts as it emerged Dunstall Park has held a record 98 meetings this year... Animal Aid is demanding fixtures are suspended at Dunstall Park pending a full inquiry and assessment. Dene Stansall, horse racing consultant for the charity, said: "Economic interests are being put far ahead of animals’ welfare.”… (story)
Guardian 20.12.06 Animal rights groups aghast at Wolverhampton all-clear - Chris Cook - Animal rights bodies yesterday hit out after the Horseracing Regulatory Authority, which is responsible for ensuring that racecourses are maintained in a fit and proper state, gave Wolverhampton a clean bill of health despite the fact that five horses have died at the track since early November. "Economic interests are being put far ahead of the animals' welfare," said Dene Stensall of the charity Animal Aid…” (story)
Guardian 20.12.06 String of deaths prompt soul searching at Wolverhampton - Track exonerated despite five fatalities at the course. Jockeys back official findings on the tragedies. - Chris Cook - Wolverhampton racecourse, scene of unprecedented carnage over the last six weeks, could breathe easier yesterday. Having been the site of five horse deaths in a little over a month, a shocking total for any racecourse but especially one which does not feature jump racing, the Dunstall Park track was all but exonerated of blame for the fatalities.... Dene Stensall of Animal Aid, which last week called for Wolverhampton to be closed pending an engineering survey, was in no mood to concede.... (story)

Daily Record 24.1.07 FURY OVER DEAD DOG - ANIMAL charities reacted with fury to yesterday's Record exclusive revealing how a dog died of thirst at a police station…. Scots actress Annette Crosbie, who runs a greyhound welfare group, said she was "appalled"… (story)

Surrey Comet 24.1.07 Does red hatchback belong to poisoner? The driver of a red hatchback could be responsible for the dog poisoning in the Ham area, according to the RSPCA inspector investigating the deaths. An anonymous caller to the RSPCA last week reported the sighting of someone feeding foxes from the car near the Hamlands wooded area on a few occasions… An anonymous caller to the RSPCA last week reported the sighting of someone feeding foxes from the car near the Hamlands wooded area on a few occasions… (story)
Surrey Comet 13.1.07 Dead dogs ‘a result of fox poison’ By Lisa Williams - Dog walkers are on red alert after three suspected cases of pet poisoning. A black labrador named Sam died on December 28, a day after being taken for a walk on the Hamlands wooded area in Ham. His owner Pat Hilton said Sam fell extremely ill after coming back from the walk…. Mrs Hilton, from Ham, said that, about two weeks before Sam's death, she saw a dead fox in Riverside Drive and now believes the two incidents are related…. (story)

Bromley Times 24.1.07 Eat veg and lose weight - WE learn that almost two thirds of adults in Britain are overweight or obese, and amazingly that obesity will soon overtake smoking as the major cause of early death… It is no conincidence that this epidemic had been matched by a massive increase in meat consumption… For those who are interested further information and sample recipes are available free of charge from The Vegetarian Society… CHRIS POPE, Vegetarian Society, Erith (story)

South Wales Echo 24.1.07 Call to ban animals from classrooms - Moira Sharkey, South Wales Echo - Animal rights campaigners are calling for a ban on keeping animals in classrooms. The People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) Europe say animals kept in classrooms are commonly improperly fed or neglected… (story)
Glasgow Herald 23.1.07 Campaigners call for ban on school pets - ALISON CHIESA - ANIMAL rights campaigners yesterday called for a ban on school pets. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta), the pressure group, launched National Rabbit Week by calling on government ministers to introduce a ban on all creatures in classrooms… Poorva Joshipura, its director, said: "Keeping animals in the classroom teaches children all the wrong lessons - that animals are disposable learning tools' or props' which can be abandoned and forgotten about over long weekends or school breaks….” (story)


Western Morning News 23.1.07 SLEEPWALKING INTO AN ORWELLIAN NIGHTMARE - The basic rights of peaceful protest and freedom of speech are the cornerstone of British democracy.Yet government laws intended to combat terrorism and crime are routinely being used to stifle free speech and curtail legitimate protest. A woman is arrested at the Cenotaph by six policemen for reciting the names of British troops killed in Iraq; anti-hunting ban protesters are beaten senseless by police in a baton charge; a broadcaster is summoned to explain to police her "homophobic" remarks on air, and so on. Opinions which Labour views as objectionable are now being criminalised…. Giles Chichester, Conservative MEP for the South West and Gibraltar (letter)

Western Morning News 23.1.07 ENOUGH VIOLENCE WITHOUT HUNTING - If hunts had nothing to hide, why do they (hunt stewards) box in cars of film crews? What a way to get pleasure. There are plenty of reasons to be ashamed of it.How sad that a three-year-old child has been "hunting" since she was 12 months old… Selecting animals which we can abuse, hunting, terrifying them, is just like racism; the only difference is the victim - and neither do we need to eat them…. Louise Piddington, Plymouth (letter)

Nottingham Evening Post 23.1.07 TALLY HO - It was such a lovely sight to see, The hunt going through Risley, Just after Christmas Day, And no protesters on the way…. ANTHONY HULL Sandiacre (poem)

Grimsby Telegraph 23.1.07 SEARCH FOR SAFETY - In response to Claire Roberts' letter regarding fox hunting. One of our beloved rabbits suffered at the hands of a very hungry fox last winter, our children were also upset at the loss of our pet.However, this is not a reason to be in favour of fox hunting and our children would also agree that fox hunting is cruel and unnecessary… J Stockley, Filey Road, Grimsby. (letter)
Grimsby Telegraph 15.1.07 MIXED VIEWS ON THE NATURE OF FOXES - Foxes do take advantage of food sources in whatever form available. However, what your correspondent, name and address supplied, has witnessed, is a vixen with possibly four cubs, just before dispersal… Mick Binnion, Heneage Road, Grimsby
IT is a pity your reader is so misinformed about foxes. They do not go around in packs, being solitary by nature. The cubs you saw are now independent and will shortly be leaving home… Name and address supplied.
On Friday January 5, I awoke to the sound of our family guinea pig squealing violently. I shot down stairs and opened the back door to see a fox scaling our 6ft fence at the end of the garden. Our pet rabbit was lying listless on the grass…. I used to disagree with hunting, but no body chased this fox and encouraged him into our secure garden, and asked him to kill in cold blood. Clare Roberts, Watford Avenue, Grimsby.
RESIDENTS of Grimsby need not fear the presence of urban foxes. For the past eight years, as an independent wildlife consultant I have been operating a professional fox deterrence service in London and the south east…. Almost all cases of fox nuisance can be resolved humanely by the use of simple deterrence techniques, whereas destruction or so-called 'capture and relocation' involves suffering and anyway merely creates a vacancy for other foxes to fill - often within days… John Bryant, Humane Urban Wildlife Deterrence. www.jbryant.co.uk (letters)
Grimsby Telegraph 6.1.07 SAFETY WORRIES AS FOXES SKULK AROUND VILLAGE It's 4.30am I have just been awoken by a barking sound. No it's not dogs but foxes - a pack of six, yes six, running round the houses in Scartho and they are big, the size of a small dog but far bigger than a Yorkshire Terrier which we have, so at times we are a bit worried about letting the dogs out.My point is, no fox hunting is well and good - but can you see a time when we are over-run with them, six foxes sounds like we already are!.... Name and address supplied (letter)

Lancashire Telegraph 23.1.07 Shadowy trade in live monkeys - THE world's largest monkey breeding factory is in Vietnam. It exists to supply the escalating demand for live animal experiments in the UK research industry and elsewhere. The Government is turning a blind eye to an appallingly cruel and inhuman trade by giving supplier approved status to companies which import these monkeys for vivisection…. SHEILA BRENNAN, Bombay Street, Blackburn (letter)

Nottingham Evening Post 23.1.07 CRUELTY OF CRATES USED AT PIG FARMS - I read with interest Jennifer Scott's article in the Evening Post on the British roadside caff (January 13), especially her comments about "outdoor reared pork" being a meaningless term. Perhaps Jennifer is not aware that 70% of Britain's sows actually give birth to their piglets indoors - not in "front of the telly" as she put it - but incarcerated in a metal crate so small she can never turn around…. JUSTIN KERSWELL Campaigns Manager, Viva! Wilder Street , Bristol (letter)

Nottingham Evening Post 23.1.07 SAINT'S DAY 'FARCE' – So the Spanish have a St Anthony Day to honour animals and one of the things they do to "celebrate" is ride a horse through a bonfire (World and National News, January 17). What a farce!... JANET WENSKE Gardenia Grove, Mapperley (letter)


Surrey Mirror 22.1.07 Foxes a menace to local food producers - I READ Mr O'Brien's letter with interest (Surrey Mirror, January 11). I'd like to direct his question about the purpose of hunting foxes to many of Surrey's farmers,who are endeavouring to provide us with superb local produce…. One local pig farmer was losing piglets every night to the fox, and a Guildford farmer told me how he had horrifically lost a cow and calf to a fox one night (the fox had closed in to eat the calf as it was being born; the cow later had to be destroyed due to the injuries she suffered trying to protect her calf)…. Set aside your emotions about "blood lust" and "people in fancy dress" - we owe it to the fox to find the most humane way of maintaining, indeed conserving,a smaller, healthy population, and hunting is the best way of doing so…. Geraldine Firth, Mill Lane, Chilworth, Guildford (letter)
Surrey Mirror 8.1.07 Fox hunting no longer has a point - ON Boxing Day, we saw the leaders of various hunts in Berkshire proclaim that the return of a Conservative Government would allow them all to enjoy hunting foxes again. Can anybody explain what is the purpose of hunting foxes in a modern society in the 21st century?... This is similar to the barbaric practice of breeding pheasant, so that "gents" can shoot them on the glorious 12th. Yet another pointless pastime. John P O'Brien, Park Ley Road, Woldingham (letter)

Surrey Mirror 22.1.07 Hunting ban law needs to be enforced - Boxing Day Hunt Was 'A Success' (Surrey Mirror, January 4). A VERY dangerous precedent is being set by the Government and the police who continue to turn a blind eye to an illegal activity, ie fox hunting…. P Duckworth, Outwood Lane, Chipstead (letter)

Western Daily Press 22.1.07 LAURIE IS UNDAUNTED BY THE DEATH THREATS BY BARRY LEIGHTON B.LEIGHTON@BEPP.CO.UK - He has braved death threats, championed democratic debate on one of the most contentious issues of our time and stood up for something he believed in when others ducked out.Now 17-year-old Swindon student Laurie Pycroft, who defied animal rights campaigners, has joined an elite group of influential people as a Great Briton. The founder of Pro-Test, which promotes and supports animal testing in medical research, was one of seven winners at the annual Morgan Stanley Great Britons awards in London…. (story)

Guardian 22.1.07 US neuroscientist rails against Oxford lab - Alexandra Smith - A leading neuroscientist and Oxford graduate has stepped into the debate over animal testing in a highly critical paper that condemns the university's controversial laboratory. Writing for Animal Aid, the UK's largest animal rights group, Marius Maxwell, a neurosurgeon at a specialist spine centre in the US, said the minority of Oxford animal researchers were "tirelessly promoting their claimed achievements before the media"…. Dr Maxwell's comments come just days after Pro-Test, the Oxford-based group backing animal testing, said three letter bombs had been sent to research companies in Oxfordshire and Birmingham…. (story)

Gloucestershire Echo 22.1.07 PET SHOP IS DEMO TARGET - Pet shop owner Lucy Gooding says animal rights protesters are targeting her business…. (story)
Gloucestershire Echo 22.1.07 PROTESTERS JUST WON'T LEAVE MY PETS ALONE - Pet shop owner Lucy Gooding says animal rights protesters are targeting her business.The 19-year-old, who owns The Animal Magic Shop in Church Road, Bishop's Cleeve, says campaigners have visited her shop three times and handed out leaflets in the six months since she opened. Lucy says Gloucestershire Animal Action group hasn't visited any other pet shops and is worried about her livelihood if they continue to target her…. Chris Smith, spokesman for Gloucestershire Animal Action Group, said: "It is definitely not the case of targeting one pet shop. That would completely defeat the object…. (story)


Gloucestershire Echo 20.1.07 FERRY IS SPARED DRINK-DRIVE BAN - The son of rock star Bryan Ferry has been spared a drink-driving ban because friends plied him with treble vodkas during a night out in Cirencester.Magistrates in Gloucester accepted Otis Ferry, 24, thought he had drunk only three single vodkas mixed with Red Bull when in fact he had downed at least two trebles followed by another drink…. (story)
Western Daily Press 20.1.07 £500 FINE BUT NO BAN FOR OTIS IN DRINK-DRIVE CASE BY BRIAN PRICE B.PRICE@BEPP.CO.UK - High-profile hunt campaigner Otis Ferry has avoided a driving ban despite drinking at least seven shots of vodka during a night out…. during a special reasons hearing, Gloucester Magistrates' Court was told that Ferry's friends had bought him treble vodka Red Bull drinks, but he believed he was drinking single shots. Ferry escaped a driving ban, but was fined £500 and ordered to pay £364 costs….(story)
Scotsman 20.1.07 Ferry's son avoids driving ban - even after 7 vodkas - LIAM CREEDON - OTIS Ferry, the pro-hunting campaigner, yesterday escaped a driving ban despite drinking at least seven shots of vodka during a student "trebles" evening…. (story)
Mirror 20.1.07 A LOT OF RED BULL By Richard Smith - FOX hunting buffoon Otis Ferry got off a drink drive ban yesterday claiming he did not know his mates had plied him with treble vodkas….(story)
Mirror 20.1.07 SUNK BY FERRY - HOOLIGAN Otis Ferry escaping a drink-drive ban - despite pleading guilty - will leave ordinary motorists wondering if the wealthy are above the law…. Ferry showed contempt for democracy by invading the Commons and holding the fox-hunting ban in contempt. (story may be in archive)
Yorkshire Post 20.1.07 OVER-LIMIT OTIS FERRY ESCAPES BEING BANNED FROM DRIVING - Pro-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry yesterday escaped a driving ban despite drinking at least seven shots of vodka during a student "trebles" evening…(story)
Sky 20.1.07 No Driving Ban For Otis - Pro-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry has escaped a driving ban despite drinking at least seven shots of vodka…. He hit the headlines when he stormed the House of Commons with seven other hunting protesters during a debate on the foxhunting ban in September 2004. The Master of the South Shropshire Hunt, described as the "prime organiser" behind the stunt, was given an 18-month conditional discharge for breaching the Public Order Act…. (story)
Malton & Pickering Mercury 24.10.06 Hunt protester Ferry on drink-drive charge - PRO-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry, a former whipper-in with the Middleton Hunt based at Birdsall, near Malton, has appeared in court on a drink-drive charge.... Ferry, who lives near Shrewsbury, Shropshire, is the master of foxhounds with the South Shropshire Hunt.... (story)
Gloucestershire Echo 21.10.06 ROCK STAR'S SON OTIS CALLS FOR A DELAY TO HIS DRINK-DRIVE HEARING - Otis Ferry has had his sentencing for drink-driving put back so he can be judged by familiar faces.The son of rock star Bryan Ferry, famed for storming the House of Commons in a pro-hunt protest, was due to be sentenced at Gloucester Magistrates' Court after he pleaded guilty to driving a Volkswagen Golf while over the limit in Somerford Road, Cirencester.... (story)
Metro 20.10.06 Rocker Bryan Ferry's son in court - Pro-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry is appearing in court today after admitting a drink-driving charge.... Otis claimed he genuinely did not believe he had drunk enough alcohol to be over the drink-drive limit. His lawyer is expected to argue that this would represent a "special reason" for not disqualifying him…. Otis hit the headlines when he stormed the House of Commons with seven other hunting protesters during a debate on the foxhunting ban in September 2004. The Master of the South Shropshire Hunt, who was described as the "rime organiser" behind the stunt…. (story)
ContactMusic 20.10.06 OTIS FERRY DRINK-DRIVING SENTENCING DELAYED - BRYAN FERRY's son OTIS made a brief appearance in court today (20OCT06) to be sentenced after pleading guilty to drink-driving charges in August (06), only to have his case adjourned... (story)
Shropshire Star 12.8.06 Otis has change of plea - Shrewsbury pro-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry is facing being disqualified after admitting drink-driving… (story)
Yorkshire Post 12.8.06 ROCK STAR'S SON FACES BAN FOR DRINK-DRIVING - Pro-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry has admitted drink-driving and faces being disqualified. The 23-year-old son of rock star Bryan Ferry changed his plea halfway through a hearing at Stroud magistrates' court in Gloucestershire yesterday…. (story)
Mirror 12.8.06 FERRY PECULIAR - Rock star's son admits drink driving but tries to escape ban on technicality By Don Mackay - THE SON of rock star Bryan Ferry admit ted drink-driving yesterday - then tried to avoid a ban by claiming he was convinced had been under the limit… (story)
Gloucester Citizen 12.8.06 OTIS FERRY TELLS COURT: YES, I DID DRINK AND DRIVE - Rock star Bryan Ferry's hunt-supporting son Otis has admitted drink driving in Cirencester, after initially denying it…. (story)
24dashcom 11.8.06 Otis Ferry faces ban for drink driving - Pro-hunting campaigner Otis Ferry is today facing being disqualified after admitting drink driving. The 23-year-old son of rock star Bryan Ferry changed his plea halfway through his trial at Stroud magistrates' court in Gloucestershire… His barrister, Phillip Lucas, said: "The issue is his genuine belief that he hadn't consumed enough alcohol to put him over the legal limit. That has been his belief and remains his belief….. Magistrates adjourned sentencing so Ferry's lawyers could hire an expert to explain how his alcohol level had gone over the limit… (story)
Gloucester Citizen 24.10.05 FERRY CHARGED - Rock star Bryan Ferry's son Otis will appear before Cirencester magistrates next month on a charge of drink-driving. The 22-year-old hunt master is alleged to have been over the limit in Somerford Road on October 11… (story)

Times 20.1.07 Food detective: pheasant - SHEILA KEATING - Game, it seems, is making a comeback in the supermarkets, and according to the promotional website Game-to-Eat, the market is now worth £38 million….(story)

Northern Echo 20.1.07 Prosecution of 'greyhound killer' delayed - AN attempt to prosecute a man accused of putting down thousands of unwanted greyhounds was delayed again yesterday. Builders' merchant David Smith faces a charge brought by the Environment Agency relating to the disposal of the carcasses of up to 10,000 dogs…. The RSPCA also looked into the case, but the society decided that no animal cruelty regulations were breached as the dogs were killed humanely… A planned protest by the animal rights' group Greyhound Action was abandoned on learning of the planned adjournment, but members are expected to gather at the court for the new hearing date, on Friday, February 16…. (story)

Newcastle Journal 20.1.07 Grey squirrels face the death penalty By Tony Henderson, The Journal - A catch-and-kill offensive is being launched against the grey squirrel in Northumberland… Now two groups have been formed - one funded to the tune of £149,000 by the Government - which cull greys and a third is process of being organised… Former military policeman Norris Atthey, 63, who lives in Ulgham, Northumberland, is setting up a group to cull greys and is currently distributing recruitment posters…. Lord Redesdale is a co-founder of the recently established Red Squirrel Protection Partnership… The Ponteland Save Our Squirrels organisation, led by Sally Hardy, Penny Hewitt and Margaret Stainsby, was started on the back of concerns over the decline of the reds population in the area over the last five years…. (story)

Oxford Mail 20.1.07 Laurie named as a 'Great Briton' - A teenager who founded a group in support of animal testing for research condemned animal rights activists who sent letter bombs to two Oxfordshire firms and a third in Birmingham. Laurie Pycroft, 17, who established Pro-Test a year ago, criticised extremist animal rights campaigners hours after he was recognised as a 'Great Briton' at an award ceremony in London…. (story)

Swindon Advertiser 20.1.07 Our Laurie’s simply great By Matt Jackson - SWINDON student Laurie Pycroft has been officially recognised as a great Briton. The 16-year-old activist and founder of Pro-Test was one of seven winners at the Morgan Stanley Great Britons awards in London…. (story)
Telegraph 19.1.07 DNA print inventor is your Great Briton By Nicole Martin - The inventor of DNA finger printing was named as the Great Briton of 2006 at a ceremony at London's Guildhall last night. Prof Sir Alec Jeffreys, whose pioneering work 20 years ago revolutionised crime detection, won the votes of thousands of members of the public… Laurie Pycroft, 16, who founded the pro-vivisection movement, Pro-Test, was recognised for his campaign work…. (story)
Telegraph 19.1.07 A Great Briton - One of them is an octogenarian knight of the realm and holder of the Order of Merit; another is a teenager who works from his bedroom. What they have in common is that they are both Great Britons – that is, award winners in the Morgan Stanley Great Briton of the Year contest. Sir David Attenborough and Laurie Pycroft emerged from a pool of candidates nominated by the public… Laurie Pycroft is associated with animals, too, but in a very different way. He has founded a movement, Pro-Test, that campaigns for the right of scientists to carry out vivisection…. The British public is divided about vivisection, but there should be no doubt about the bravery of a young man who is prepared take on these disgusting and sinister extremists. That is the act of a Great Briton. (story)


Witney Gazette 19.1.07 Monitor: 'I was attacked' By Hayley Cover - A 60-YEAR-OLD hunt monitor said she was violently knocked to the ground by a supporter as she tried to film a hunt taking place in Oxfordshire. Judy Gilbert, a hunt monitor for Protect Our Wild Animals - an Oxfordshire anti-hunt organisation - was filming the Heythrop Hunt in Dean, when she claims a supporter of the hunt attacked her…. (story)
Oxford Times 18.1.07 Police investigate hunt assault claim By Hayley Cover - A 60-YEAR-OLD hunt monitor said she was violently knocked to the ground by a supporter as she tried to film a hunt taking place in Oxfordshire. Judy Gilbert, a hunt monitor for Protect Our Wild Animals - an anti-hunt organisation - was filming the Heythrop Hunt in Dean, near Chipping Norton, when she claims a supporter of the hunt attacked her… (story)

Western Morning News 19.1.07 JUST ACCEPT IT'S A MAD WORLD … By and large we are a polite lot here in this "shoddy little island full of mixed up people" (to quote a guest on the Today programme) - rural dwellers in particular don't go around shouting offensive things from rooftops…. Never will I forget being on WMN duty and joining a busload of country folk to cover the big pro-hunt march in London a few years back. When we reached town and started to see folk of a foreign ilk walking the pavements??? Well, it takes a lot to shock a hardened hack like me, but what I saw and heard from seemingly decent law abiding people in that bus outraged me beyond belief… (story)

Hexham Courant 19.1.07 Quagmire - MY thanks go to the Tynedale Hunt meeting of January 10 which kindly turned large sections of my daily dog walk into a quagmire, virtually impassable in places on foot…. IAN KENYON, Lincoln Hill, Humshaugh (letter)

Bedford Times & Citizen 19.1.07 Why is hunting within the law a problem? – In response to the recent letters objecting to your coverage of the Oakley Hunt Boxing Day meet (T&C Dec 29), what is the problem? As long as they are hunting within the law, what is wrong with reporting a colourful traditional event which for too long has been forced out of the public eye due to illegal pressure from anti-hunt organisations?... The fact that groups of saboteurs still go out clad in balaclavas trying to disrupt 'legal' hunting by diverting hounds away from the control of hunt staff and into trouble just goes to show the real motive behind the ban had nothing to do with animal welfare and more to do with misguided grudge against so called 'toffs on horseback'…. HW Hulatt, Park End, Stevington (letter)

Lancashire Evening Post 19.1.07 It's not just pit bulls that can be vicious - The savaging to death of a five-year-old girl by a pit bull terrier was an unbelievably horrible tragedy… On the other hand, what about foxhounds bred and trained for blood sports? These hounds are wonderfully gentle and child-friendly when not on a fox, deer, or mink hunt. Unfortunately reports of suspect activity and "accidental foxhunting" in recent months, indicate that a minority of hunting enthusiasts do not respect the hunting act or 'local residents' right to reasonable safety… Ms Katherine Watson, Bramhall, Stockport (letter)

Shropshire Star 19.1.07 Barbaric sport coverage - The front page headline on the Shropshire Star on December 26 - “Thousands at hunt meets” - confirms my view that the Shropshire Star supports fox hunting with dogs…. Hunting with dogs is a barbaric sport… R Williams, Shifnal (letter)

Worcester Evening News 19.1.07 Strengthen law, don’t get rid of it - Yet again we are treated to the facts about life, the universe and hunting according to Jon Burgess (Letters, January 8). The Hunting Act most certainly was about improving animal welfare with a clear intention to prevent the prolonged pursuit and cruel slaughter of foxes, deer and hares… The law as it stands needs strengthening and enforcing but is only needed because some people still delight in seeking out and watching the violent and bloody death of an animal. Why? Well, that's a question that defeats me. Maurice Brett, Bromsgrove. (letter)
Worcester News 16.1.07 Hounds live despite, not because of, ban - It is obvious that neither I Wilson or B Harris (Letters, January 9) are acquainted with the Hunting Act 2004 or have any idea what has happened since it came into force. Thankfully, hounds have not been put down but this is in spite of the ban and not because of it. Since 2004, country people and the hunting community have been determined to keep their traditions and way of life intact…. Jon Burgess, Malvern. (letter)
Worcester News 9.1.07 They were there to watch sport’s end - How wrong the huntsmen are about public opinion. The large turnout of spectators on Boxing Day was made up of people wanting to see the dying days of a cruel part of this country's past…. B HARRIS, Worcester. (letter)
Worcester News 9.1.07 Law has not meant dogs being killed - I was very pleased to read that the local seasonal hunts were well attended and that hunts generally are thriving. This proves what many were saying all along - the passing of the law did not mean that any dogs needed to be put down and a good day's fun and exercise can be had by chasing a scent rather than a live animal.... I WILSON, Malvern (letter)

North East Evening Gazette 19.1.07 Hunt down evil hunter - As someone who has campaigned for animal rights and welfare issues most of my adult life, I thought I'd heard of every possible act of man's intolerable cruelty towards our four-legged friends but the recent story about a so-called trophy hunter proved I was wrong. Several foxes (minus their heads) have been discovered by police in our area… STEPHEN PATERSON (post grad student and animal rights campaigner), Redcar (letter)

Sutton Coldfield Observer 19.1.07 DOG IS INJURED BY DISCARDED ANGLER'S HOOK - FIONA LANGTON - Anglers who carelessly discard hooks and line are threatening local wildlife and the health of dogs being walked in Sutton, it has been claimed. Sutton resident Fiona Langton's cocker spaniel Toffee swallowed a fishing hook and 17 inches of fishing line after a walk round Blackroot pool last week…. An RSPCA spokesperson said careless anglers were a threat to local wildlife…. A spokesperson for Birmingham City Council, on behalf of the Sutton Park Rangers, said it was rare for dogs to be hurt… "We find that anglers there are generally very responsible." (story)

Cambridge Evening News 19.1.07 Hare coursers handed ASBOs in crackdown - TWO hare coursers have been handed ASBOs to stop them practicing the illegal sport on farmland in Cambridgeshire. George Lee, 24, and John Bruce, 39, both of Belvedere, Kent, were caught hare coursing on land near Littleport on Wednesday, December 27, by Cambridgeshire police Rural Community Action Team (RCAT)…. (story)

Cambridge Evening News 19.1.07 RSPCA wins 98% of animal cruelty cases - TWO brothers convicted of causing unnecessary suffering to a dog after allowing it to get grossly fat believe the RSPCA was "out of order" to prosecute them. Derek and David Benton, of Newport Avenue, Fordham, were found guilty at Ely Magistrates' Court… Ms Koehorst, of Bishop's Road, Trumpington, was prosecuted by the charity last year, but was cleared of failing to provide Jemima, a massive black and white saddleback sow, with appropriate veterinary treatment for mange. She said: "I was always brought up thinking the RSPCA was a wonderful thing and they obviously do some good, but they have got too big for their boots….(story)

Yorkshire Post 19.1.07 EURO MP CALLS FOR BULLFIGHT BAN IN EUROPE - A Labour Euro MP yesterday launched a campaign to ban the "disgrace" of bull fighting across Europe. Robert Evans said the practice was "abhorrent entertainment" which killed 40,000 bulls every year…. Jordi Casamitjana, of the League Against Cruel Sports, backed the campaign… (story)


Milford Mercury 18.1.07 Tragic death at Hunt Ball - A popular local farmer died suddenly during the Pembrokeshire Hunt Ball at Haverfordwest County Showground on Saturday. Peter Lewis Evans, aged 48, from Hayscastle, was given immediate medical attention by a doctor who was a fellow guest at the ball…. (story)
Western Telegraph 18.1.07 Tragedy at Hunt Ball - Revellers were shocked and distressed to witness the sudden death of a popular local farmer at this year's Pembrokeshire Hunt Ball on Saturday. Hayscastle farmer Peter Lewis Evans, aged 48, died suddenly during the ball at the county showground…. (story)
BBC News Online 15.1.07 Man's sudden death at hunt ball - Dyfed-Powys Police say that a man died during the Pembrokeshire Hunt Ball on Saturday night…. but his death is not thought to be suspicious. (story)

Western Daily Press 18.1.07 DOUBLE AGENT DOG STORY OF THE WEEK - Without a doubt the best news story of the last week was Tristan Cork's wonderfully entertaining report on Fever the foxhound which, depending on which side you support, either infiltrated the West headquarters of the League Against Cruel Sports to obtain information, or was dognapped by the LACS and returned to the Minehead Harriers Hunt after being brainwashed…. Robert Readman Bournemouth (letter)

Western Daily Press 18.1.07 A CASE OF DIVINE REINCARNATION? - In response to the Your Call comment by Charles Henry, "Anti-slavery and pro-hunt parallel" (Western Daily Press, January 10), it is the people who inflict cruelty on humans and animals who are unbalanced, not those who try to stop it…. A Williams Bath Somerset (letter)

North Devon Journal 18.1.07 BOXING DAY HUNT CAUSES CONFUSION - I am confused about the report on the Boxing Day hunt at Torrington (Journal, December 28). Were these people hunting illegally or was this a drag hunt?Hunting with dogs became illegal two years ago. At that time we were led to believe that if hunting were banned the horses and hounds would be shot…. Why do some of the hunting fraternity still want to repeal the Hunting Act when hunting seems to take place as usual, albeit without the live chase and kill?... SHEELAGH DARLING, Marwood, Barnstaple. (letter)

The Forester 18.1.07 WHAT A MARVELLOUS SIGHT ON BOXING DAY - What a marvellous sight on Boxing Day was the meeting of the hunt, more so as there was no bloodshed.Do those little children on their ponies really think there is no suffering when the hounds rip the foxes to pieces or are they just simply brainwashed?... (Name and address supplied) (letter)

Shropshire Star 18.1.07 Media doff their caps to hunters - J Hewitt, Rhyl (letter)
Daily Post 12.1.07 Hunt ban By Judi Hewitt, Rhyl - I DON'T understand why hunts are insisting on repealing the ban if they are having such a good time hunting without killing anything. It concerns me that these people are desperate to carry on getting their kicks from torturing animals to death… (letter)

Accrington Observer 18.1.07 Farm at the centre of bird shooting row - A DAIRY farmer has defended his right to shoot Canada Geese which are deluging his farm, despite protests from angry residents…. Susan and Alan Cook, of St James’ Road, Church, regularly walk their dog along the canal path opposite the field and have mounted early morning patrols to try to stop the killings. They say they understand the problems geese can cause but claim the birds are being killed unnecessarily as a "sport"…. (story)

Yorkshire Evening Post 18.1.07 Swan poison alert BY NEIL HUDSON …Yorkshire Swan Rescue Hospital said it dealt with at least five swans a month suffering from lead poisoning – it picked one up from Fairburn Ings, near Pontefract, last week. Co-founder of the charity Dan Sidley said Wakefield and Pontefract, together with Kirklees, were among the busiest areas for swan rescues, owing to the large number of waterways… (story)

Oxford Mail 18.1.07 Storm update: Lab fence topples - A security fence surrounding the building site of the Oxford University animal experiments laboratory has fallen on four people… Police were already on the scene because a of demonstration outside the lab and officers and protesters raced to help victims…. (story)

Oxford Mail 18.1.07 Wrong targets - I refer to your story, Animal rights activists rack up litany of unsolved crimes… The pro-vivisection lobby and its bedfellows, the Government, gleefully jump on the bandwagon to blacken anti-vivisectionists at every opportunity…. PAMELA KINNUNEN Purley Avenue London (story)

Western Mail 18.1.07 Sick 'sport' in Wales - I refer to the awful death over the New Year of the little girl savaged by the pit bull terrier in Merseyside…. this problem of dogs bred for their ferocity and for dogfights is not just a problem in the north of England… hat possible enjoyment can people get from watching two dogs rip each other to bits? LORRAINE PARKER, Whitchurch Road, Cardiff (letter)

Newcastle Journal 18.1.07 End in sight for old mink farm complex By Dave Black, The Journal - A mink farm which was at the centre of a sustained protest campaign by animal rights activists might be about to disappear forever from the Northumberland landscape. Cornyhaugh Farm near Ponteland hit the headlines in the late 1990s when it was targeted by anti-cruelty campaigners calling for it to be shut down because of the conditions in which mink were kept and killed for their fur…. (story)

Ely Standard 18.1.07 Airman who killed dog discharged - ANIMAL rights campaigners have welcomed news that a former medic who slashed his dog's throat with a military knife has been kicked out of the American Air Force. Senior Airman Dustin Yandell, 22, originally from Maryland and based at RAF Lakenheath having served in Iraq, has been discharged after admitting killing his golden retriever, Goldie, in March last year…. Kate Fowler-Reeves, head of campaigns at Animal Aid, said: "This is a very shocking case but sadly not unusual. There are a lot of cases of deliberate cruelty…. (story)
East Anglian Daily Times 9.1.07 Serviceman discharged after cruelty case - LORRAINE PRICE - ANIMAL rights campaigners last night welcomed news that a former Iraq medic who slashed open his dog's throat with a military knife has been kicked out of the American air force. Senior Airman Dustin Yandell, 22, originally from Maryland and based at RAF Lakenheath, has been discharged from service at the base after admitting killing his golden retriever Goldie in March 2006.... Kate Fowler-Reeves, head of campaigns at Animal Aid, said: "This is a very shocking case but sadly not unusual....” (story)


Cornish Guardian 17.1.07 HUNT SUPPORT - More people are supporting East Cornwall Hunt than before the government ban on fox hunting, say committee members.The hunt had a successful meeting at Colliford recently and up to 2,500 supporters followed 87 riders from Jamaica Inn for the traditional Boxing Day meet…. (story)

Cambridge Evening News 17.1.07 Manic mockery From Alison Brannick, Thicket Road, Houghton, St Ives - I KNOW little about hunting, so I don't know if Mr Ayling (Letters, January 4) was right or wrong… But if I knew he was wrong I would try to answer thoughtfully. It's a pity Mike Michalak (Letters, January 10) chose another road. By firing manic mockery at Mr Ayling, rather than offering any reasoned rebuttal, he merely disclosed something grotesque in himself. (letter)
Cambridge Evening News 10.1.07 No reason to live From Mike Michalak, Swaffham Road, Burwell - OH my God, poor old Ken Ayling (Letters, January 4), no more fox hunting and it seems his life is all but at an end…. His day of fun has been taken away and now he comes out kicking an screaming like a spoilt child… Take up a hobby, something like embroidery or flower arranging. I think you'll find it far less stressful. (letter)

Western Daily Press 17.1.07 CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR - In response to Charles Henry's letter where he says he is thinking of coming back as a horse (Your Say, January 10), I hope he does not come back as a fox as he might not relish being ripped to pieces by a pack of hounds… S Palmer Cam Dursley (letter)

Leicester Mercury 17.1.07 GOVERNMENT SHOULD ADMIT IT BLUNDERED OVER GUN BAN - I am pleased to say that the Home Office is currently in consultation with the Department of Culture, Media and Sport regarding a temporary relaxation of the laws relating to pistols ahead of the London Olympics in 2012…. The ban has proved beyond any doubt that the Government made a blunder because we all know that gun-related crime has spiralled out of control, despite all those registered handguns being destroyed…. G Allen, Rothley. (letter)

Scotsman 17.1.07 Wildlife in question - I have three questions for Alex Hogg Letters, 12 January): 1, What evidence is there that "stock and other wildlife is declining at an alarming rate" due to predation by protected predators?... PATRICK STIRLING-AIRD, Secretary, Scottish Raptor Study Groups, Old Kippenross, Dunblane, Perthshire (letter)
Scotsman 12.1.07 Birds of prey conundrum - Martin Hulme asks if the Scottish Gamekeepers Association agrees that those convicted of killing birds of prey such as red kites should serve custodial sentences. The SGA does not feel that, other than for persistent offenders, custodial sentences are appropriate, and the law as it stands is more than adequate to deal with offenders... ALEX HOGG, Chairman, SGA, Eddleston, Peeblesshire (letter)
Scotsman 8.1.07 Illegal killing of birds - Alex Hogg, of the Scottish Gamekeepers Association, claims (Letters, 5 January) that just 4 per cent of Scotland's red kite population has been illegally killed. This is at odds with your report (29 December), which revealed that nearly half of the entire kite population had been illegally killed through poisoning and shooting.... MARTIN HULME, Alnwickhill Road, Edinburgh (letter)
Scotsman 5.1.07 End to RSPB rhetoric - The Scottish Gamekeepers' Association condemns the use of poison, but analysis of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds' own figures shows that less than 4 per cent of Scotland's red kite population have been illegally killed, a huge improvement on previous years (your report, 29 December). The SGA questions why the RSPB tries to discredit the game industry which pumps £240 million annually into the rural economy... ALEX HOGG, Braemar, Aberdeenshire (letter)


Mid Devon Gazette 16.1.07 HOUND AT LACS - Huntsmen were forced to retrieve one of their hounds from the League Against Cruel Sports office at Dulverton after it was left behind during a hunt meeting.Fever (pictured above) became separated from the rest of the pack as the Minehead Harriers hunted in Exmoor, Somerset…. (story)
Western Morning News 11.1.07 LOST FOXHOUND MAKES NEW FRIENDS - NICK FOLEY - When Fever the foxhound got lost an embarrassed huntsman was forced to cross 'enemy lines' to find her after she was rescued by an anti-hunt campaign group. She became separated from the rest of the pack as the Minehead Harriers hunted in Exmoor, Somerset, last week. After being rescued by the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS), she was looked after at its south-west headquarters in Dulverton.... (story)
BBC News Online 10.1.07 Huntsmen retrieve lost hound dog - Red-faced huntsmen were forced to retrieve one of their hounds from anti-hunt protestors after it was left behind during a hunt meeting. Fever became separated from the rest of the pack as the Minehead Harriers hunted in Exmoor, Somerset.... (story)
Western Daily Press 9.1.07 HOW FOXHOUND FEVER FOUND HERSELF BEHIND 'ENEMY' LINES BY TRISTAN CORK T.CORK@BEPP.CO.UK - She's an unlikely undercover agent in the fierce Cold War between hunting folk and the anti-hunt campaigners. The four unmistakable legs, a tail and no collar or lead give the game away about whose side Fever the Foxhound is on.... The Minehead Harriers were hunting, legally of course, in the area around Dulverton where the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS) has its West base. All the hounds were there except Fever, who was instead being photographed with the league's campaign literature, posters and displays, at the very heart of the organisation that has done the most to ban the thing she was bred to do.... Exactly how Fever went over to the other side remained a matter of small dispute yesterday - LACS staff said she was left behind and lost, while some hunt followers said they suspected she may have been prematurely dog-napped..... (story)

Western Daily Press 16.1.07 USING CHILDREN TO PROMOTE HUNTING - I See that Charles Henry has resorted to bluster and insult again in his response to my latest letter… When we see children at hunt meets used by their parents to carry slogans such as "born to hunt' then we can see in an instant how they view their vulnerable charges… Gill Purser Cheltenham (letter)

Western Daily Press 16.1.07 LAW IS STILL BEING IGNORED BY MANY - So Fiona Vigar joint master of the Cattistock foxhounds, "Hunt 'used nature reserve'" (Western Daily Press, January 9) is unaware that her professional huntsman allowed the pack of hounds on to Hardington Moor nature reserve while she followed on horseback.If a trail was being laid as she claims, why was the trail laid through a SSSI… Helen Weeks West Coker Somerset (letter)

Western Daily Press 16.1.07 VILLAGERS' VIEWS - Have the villagers in Lacock any say about their landlord, the National Trust, allowing the local hunt to meet in the village?Marian Carroll Gloucester (letter)

Western Morning News 16.1.07 GOOD REASONS FOR REPEAL OF UNPOPULAR ACT - Recently the BBC Today programme ran a Poll which asked: "Which law would you most like to see repealed?"… There is no doubt that the hunting Act, hated by vast numbers in town and country alike, illustrates just how much the House has become so utterly disconnected from the people, especially on this issue, where it is now clear it is totally at variance with the opinion of the electorate as a whole…. Tess Nash, Helston (letter)

Exeter Express & Echo 12.1.07 SUPPORT IS, IN FACT, DECLINING FOR HUNTS - The Countryside Alliance would like us to believe that there is enormous support for hunting because of the numbers who turned out on Boxing Day. A different account is given by people who monitor hunts.On ordinary hunting days, support is no longer there and, as a consequence, finance is drying up…. Name and address, withheld on request (letter)

Western Mail 16.1.07 Alliance is as sordid as the hunt - Steve Dub 's write-up "Repeal the Hunting Act is new resolution", (Country & Farming, January 9) read like it came straight from the Countryside Alliance's website…. I have to hand it to the Countryside Alliance, they will try anything to overturn the ban on cruelty, even if it means using every dirty trick in the book to advance their vile cause….The Countryside Alliance would have us all think hunting with dogs is just good, harmless picturesque fun but the reality is as sordid as the extremist element of the organisation itself. JUDI HEWITT, Hadley Crescent, Rhyl (letter)

Grimsby Telegraph 16.1.07 BAN ALL BLOOD SPORTS - Why, once again, do we have to put up with the sick pictures in the papers of members of the Royal Family blasting pheasants out of the sky just for the fun of it - it is not sport but sheer wanton cruelty, and is nothing but barbaric… T Hall, Willing Way, Grimsby (letter)

Western Mail 16.1.07 Taking youths off the street and onto the river bank - Moc Morgan, Western Mail - An important debate was conducted in Westminster recently. It was to do with fisheries legislation… During the debate, the Minister, Ben Bradshaw, referred to some excellent coaching work being done by angling groups in England, when coaches had gone into schools and given practical advice to pupils on the joys of angling. The most notable was the Hooked on Angling scheme, which cast off in the Durham area…. (story)

Times 16.1.07 Overwhelmed by a force of nature - SIMON BARNES - To receive a fierce and swooping bird of prey on your arm, you need patience, faith and trust - The world is two nations: on one side, there is humanity, civilisation and control; on the other, the nonhuman, the wild, the untouchable. Well, my heartland lies between them. Call it the DMZ (demilitarised zone). And so I received an invitation to reach out and touch the wildest creatures on the planet: and it was not to be turned down. The Hawk Conservancy in Hampshire invited me to fly some hawks. Like Oscar, I can resist anything except temptation…. (story)

Bucks Herald 16.1.07 BREAKING NEWS: ANIMAL RIGHTS PROTEST IN AYLESBURY - ANIMAL rights protesters have been outside The Bucks Herald's building in Aylesbury this morning… (story)

Bath Chronicle 16.1.07 HOTELS URGED TO TAKE FOIE GRAS OFF MENUS - Restaurants in Bath are being urged to axe foie gras from their menus. Animal rights group Viva! is urging city residents to boycott eateries serving up what they have dubbed 'torture in a tin'…."Foie gras is torture in a tin," said the group's campaigns manager Justin Kerswell… (story)

Somerset County Gazette 16.1.07 Release of badgers "irresponsible" say farmers By Chris Alder - FARMERS in West Somerset have branded the RSPCA irresponsible after it released badgers into the wild near Lydeard St Lawrence. They say the badgers could add to the spread of bovine TB at a time of heightened concern about the disease…. (story)
Western Morning News 11.1.07 BADGERS FREED INTO TB HOTSPOT - EXCLUSIVEMARK CLOUGH - The rspca has been labelled "irresponsible and provocative" by Westcountry farmers for releasing badgers into the wild near a bovine TB hotspot.The animal charity has released juvenile badgers fitted with radio tags into the West Somerset countryside around Lydeard St Lawrence, as part of a study to see how they disperse and survive. The study came to light after farmers in the area demanded to know what a Land Rover fitted with a long aerial was doing driving around the lanes near their farms. The farmers are furious that the project could add to the spread of bovine TB, the disease which has blighted many farms across the Westcountry… (story)


Western Daily Press 15.1.07 NOW A DIFFERENT SHAGGY DOG STORY - I Felt I had to write to commend the bravery of the Western branch of the League Against Cruel Sports following its "rescue" of Fever, the Exmoor foxhound (January 9). Not only did it allow her to enter its headquarters, it seemed happy to spend its time with her.This all comes as a rather shocking turnaround as the LACS' own website states that every hunting season there are "scores of incidents - some trivial, but many serious" involving rioting (out-of- control) hounds… Charlotte Fiander London (letter)

Aberdeen Press & Journal 15.1.07 Pheasant shoot - Well done, Fiona Clark… Fiona hopes Joe Watson is never mistaken for a pheasant. I hope he is. Bruce Kean, 11 Causewayend Crescent, Aberchirder (letter)
Aberdeen Press & Journal 12.1.07 Day out at the pheasant shoot - Well, well, Joe Watson, so you enjoyed your day with the gentry on the pheasant shoot (the Press and Journal, January 6). Is there a special energised stimulation as one aims the shotgun at the blood-pumping aerial flight plumaged in many different hues, sole wish for death to conquer - as a bravado hit?... Fiona Clark, Pittendrum Gardens, Sandhaven (letter)

Aberdeen Press & Journal 15.1.07 Red kites in the north - , John Smith's letter on red kites in the north (the Press and Journal, January 11) was cynical and ill-informed and failed to appreciate even some basic facts about the red kite, namely it is a scavenger living almost exclusively on carrion and road casualties, thus posing no threat to pheasants or grouse…. Logan D. Steele, 40 Bridgewater Avenue, Auchterarder. (letter)

Gloucestershire Echo 15.1.07 FOIE GRAS? DON'T FORGET THE GEESE - Animal rights campaigners staged protests in Cheltenham on Saturday.The Gloucestershire Animal Action Group handed out banners and leaflets to shoppers in the town centre opposing the sale of rabbit fur. A dozen protesters also stood outside The Queen's hotel at 4pm to oppose the use of foie gras in its restaurant. Chris Smith, who is heading the campaign, said: "Foie gras is made by force feeding ducks and geese huge amounts of grain so their livers swell up to almost 10 times their normal size…. (story)

News Shopper 15.1.07 Why don't churches fight factory farms - EXCELLENT! I refer to the letter from Robert Roach drawing our attentions to the appalling conditions turkeys are reared in for our Christmas feasts… C POPE, Erith (letter)
News Shopper 18.12.06 God wouldn’t bless this barbaric tradition - ONE of God's creations was the wild turkey. A wonderful bird that lives in open forest, can fly up to 55mph, roosts in trees and can live up to 10 years... Millions of turkeys eaten this Christmas may have come from a squalid, windowless unit, or from the pole barn system where most birds have their beaks removed because the conditions lead to cannibalism. I appeal to all religious people to question celebrating a holy time by gorging on the carcass of a mistreated animal... Robert Roach, Sidcup (letter)


Sunday Times 14.1.07 ROD LIDDLE - My, it’s warm in court today - Be upstanding for his honour Judge Mark Davies, who adjudicates upon immigration matters in the Sheffield area and, in his spare time, enjoys squeezing a small concertina over his private parts, while standing in the buff by some straw…. Davies has stripped off to become Mr July in a calendar produced by the Pennine Foxhounds, of which he is joint master. Tremble, tremble, you miscreant foxes…. (story)

Independent on Sunday 14.1.07 Bears are still dying to make new hats for the Guards By Marie Woolf, Political Editor - The Ministry of Defence has spent more than £320,000 over the past five years on ceremonial hats for guardsmen, each made from a single bearskin…."Tradition is no excuse for outright cruelty," said a spokesman for Peta, the animal welfare campaign group….(story)

Sunday Herald 14.1.07 Fury at 250,000 hen farm’s ‘free range’ claim By Rob Edwards, Environment Editor - PLANS TO put more than a quarter of a million hens in 11 huge sheds and sell their eggs as "free-range" have been derided as a mockery by animal welfare campaigners…. these arrangements are really "pseudo-free-range", according to John Robins of Animal Concern…. (story)


Bristol Evening Post 13.1.07 BREAKING THE CITY BARRIER - Curtis Thompson talks to Mary Tapping about his transition from built-up Bristol to his work in the country as kennel huntsman for the Avon Vale HuntCurtis Thompson grew up in Barton Hill. His landscape was hemmed in by tower blocks in a community straddling one side of the Feeder Canal…. (story)

New York Times 13.1.07 The Changing Times Take the Fox Out of the Fox Hunt - WIELD, England — On a quickly souring Hampshire morning in late December, Will Hudson meandered in on a tall, brown horse, shepherding 40 barking hounds… The British Parliament’s controversial Hunting Act in 2005 made the use of dogs to kill prey illegal. So to keep fox hunting alive, clubs like the Hampshire Hunt, one of 314 still registered in Britain, have resorted to drag hunting, or trail hunting, in which a scent is laid artificially…. (story)

Western Daily Press 13.1.07 NATURAL ENGLAND COULD BE FURTHER THREAT TO WILDLIFE - Maybe we should think about how much of our "natural England" we will lose if we pander to the prejudices that motivate Mr Richardson's letter… Livestock farming, hunting, fishing and shooting can and do all have massive conservation benefits… Giles Bradshaw Devon (letter)

Western Daily Press 13.1.07 A lesson in how to rig the result - A huge number of people vote for a hugely unpopular law, and immediately the opposition screams foul!... Publicising a vote is very different from rigging. Claire Wright, Cambridgeshire
How do you rig a one-person one-vote poll? Liam Thom Isle of Wight (letters)

Scotsman 13.1.07 Cormorant - not my flavour of the month - SHOOTING & FISHING - ALASTAIR ROBERTSON - MY ELDERLY cousin rang to ask if I had a recipe for cormorant…. The other recipe which excited me but which I began to smell a rat about came from Willie Fowler, a one-time Spitfire pilot who in 1965 published Countryman's Cooking, which is a glorious paean to political incorrectness…. "Having shot your cormorant, hold it well away from you as you carry it home; these birds are exceedingly verminous… Bury the carcass and leave it there for a fortnight. This is said to improve the flavour by removing, in part at least, the taste of rotting fish…. Simmer gently in seawater, to which two tablespoons of chloride of lime has been added… ake out of the water and allow to dry, meanwhile mixing up a stiff paste of methylated spirit and curry powder. Spread this mixture liberally over the breast of the bird. Finally roast for three hours. The result is unbelievable. Not even a starving vulture would eat it... “ (story)

Exeter Express & Echo 13.1.07 COUNTRY SHOW IS FAIR GAME - The Westcountry Game Fair, which is billed as the ultimate countryside experience, will be held at the Royal Bath and West Showground in March.The event, on Saturday, March 17, and Sunday, March 18, attracts thousands of visitors who are passionate about the countryside way of life…. he British Association for Shooting and Conservation will be on hand to offer coaching and advice, and there are opportunities to put theory into practice with the clay shoot and air rifles… Fly-casting demonstrations and coaching with world champion fisherman Hywel Morgan, will be available for angling enthusiasts… (story)

Daelnet 13.1.07 New battle in hedgehog wars - ONE OF the strangest wars ever fought between two sets of nature lovers seems set for another battle with the publication of new scientific evidence which could stop the wholesale slaughter of hedgehogs on remote Scottish islands…. This infuriated the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS), which asked for permission to trap the hedgehogs and move them back to the mainland. This, however, was refused by Scottish National Heritage because, it claimed, the mammals would die slow and lingering deaths because they would be unable to acclimatise to their new homes… (story)
Scotsman 10.1.07 Survivors may solve prickly problem - JOHN ROSS - HEDGEHOGS relocated from the Western Isles to the mainland to avoid a cull are surviving in their new homes, according to animal rights groups... the Uist Hedgehog Rescue (UHR), a coalition of animal rights groups, relocated 756 hedgehogs from North and South Uist over the past four years. The group radio-tracked 20 hedgehogs for a month after they were transferred to the Eglinton Country Park in Irvine, Ayrshire. While some died from natural causes, 80 per cent survived, according to the study.... (story)
Glasgow Herald 10.1.07 Wildlife campaigners renew call to abandon hedgehog cull - DAVID ROSS - WILDLIFE campaigners have renewed calls for Scottish Natural Heritage to abandon its controversial cull of island hedgehogs following research suggesting they can be safely relocated to the mainland.... (story)
Aberdeen Press & Journal 10.1.07 HEDGEHOG CULL COSTS £950 A HEAD - CLAIM - Hedgehog lovers claimed yesterday that it costs taxpayers £950 to kill each one captured in the Western Isles compared with £50 a head to ship them alive to the mainland.... (story)
BBC News Online 9.1.07 Call to spike Uists hedgehog cull - Fresh calls have been made to end the cull of hedgehogs on the Uists in the Outer Hebrides.... the British Hedgehog Preservation Society said its studies have found that island hedgehogs can survive if relocated to the mainland.... Ross Minett, spokesperson for the Uist Hedgehog Rescue coalition, welcomed the findings.... (story)

Gloucestershire Echo 13.1.07 EAT MEAT? THEN YOU CAN'T SAVE HEDGEHOGS - She once made a 430-mile journey to the Outer Hebrides to save hedgehogs.But animal campaigner Angela Gabbott has been forced out of defending the prickly creatures this year - because she's a meat eater. Scottish Natural Heritage wants to resume a cull of hedgehogs on the island of Uist in the spring…. Mrs Gabbott, 59, who lives in Corse Lawn, joined campaigners in May 2003 to help save the hedgehogs. She wanted to return to the Hebrides this year but has been warned off by fellow campaigners, who are all vegetarians. Mrs said: "We applied to help but the organisers told us we shouldn't come unless we were prepared to be like them…. (story)


Post & Times 12.1.07 PLEA TO REVIVE FOX HUNT EVENT - A Market town should revive an annual fox hunt meet to add to its crowd-pulling power once current regeneration work has been completed.The controversial suggestion comes from dairy farmer and Uttoxeter Town councillor, David Brookes. He is suggesting that members of the exclusive Meynell Hunt should resume the annual meet they used to stage in Uttoxeter's now-improved Market Place…. (story)

Exeter Express & Echo 12.1.07 HUNTING ACT TOPS RADIO POLL - Hunt supporters were delighted that the Hunting Act received the most public votes in a Radio 4 vote to repeal the least popular national law.At East Devon Hunt's Boxing Day meet, fieldmaster John Oram-Evenett encouraged supporters to use their mobile phones and vote in the poll…. (story)
Observer 7.1.07 Comment - Jasper Gerard - Actually, flooding Today with calls can only help keep democracy afloat - We are faced with McCarthyism in reverse, an illiberal liberalism.... Last week, we woke to hear Ed Stourton announcing the result of a vote on which nanny-state law Today listeners would abolish. Alas for Ed, people had voted massively to end the ban on... foxhunting. He admitted through gritted metropolitan teeth that the BBC almost refused to count the votes due to 'suspicions there was an organised campaign at work'. What? A campaign before a vote? Whatever next? Perhaps we should declare the last election void for fear Labour conducted an 'organised campaign'. The culprit was the Countryside Alliance, an outfit I've detested since being suckered into supporting it at its launch... the BBC almost instigated a ban of its own, basically because it doesn't approve of big fat men on farting horses. You suspect that if Amnesty activists weren't too stoned to have flooded the switchboard with demands to, say, legalise terrorism, there would have been no talk of discarding their vote... (story)
Sunday Telegraph 7.1.07 When the people speak: don't listen By Carol Sarler, Sunday Telegraph ... Oh, come on: didn't you just know, the minute you heard our friends back at Today announce their wheeze to find the law "we the people" most want repealed, that it would be bloody fox hunting? Fair enough to the pro-hunters, if they enjoy their little game at our expense. What is not fair, however, is for anybody to suggest that an organised few hundred in a nation of 60 million provide any clue to the views of we-the-people… (story)
Daelnet 5.1.07 Thrown again: the BBC and the hunting ban - Our countryside and rural affairs commentator John Sheard, who had a pretty poor Christmas and New Year, presents a rare vote of thanks to the BBC for giving him the biggest laugh of the holiday by, once again, being unseated by the fox hunting ban... (story)
Daelnet 2.1.07 Hunt vote bewilders BBC - A MASSIVE radio poll demanding the return of legal fox hunting appears to have bewildered the producers of BBC radio's flagship news programme, today, over the New Year. Listeners were asked to vote for the parliamentary act that they would most like to see repealed and of the thousands who voted, a massive 53% demanded the scrapping of the Hunting Act, which made fox hunting illegal two years ago... Presenters attempted to smear the vote by suggesting that it had been orchestrated by the Countryside Alliance... But the League Against Cruel Sports had made a similar, though opposite appeal, on its website and had gone further by urging its supporters to write to the BBC demanding that the anti-hunting bill be removed from the poll. (story)
Western Morning News 2.1.07 HUNTING ACT TOPS POLL OF BAD LAWS - The repeal of the Hunting Act, which brought in the ban on hunting nearly two years, has been overwhelmingly called for in a vote held among listeners to BBC Radio 4's Today programme. But the size of the vote - 52.8 per cent of all votes cast - has already prompted claims that a campaign was organised by the pro-hunting Countryside Alliance to encourage hunt supporters to vote.... This is not the first time that hunt supporters have been accused of acting in a concerted way to try to influence matters. Pro-hunters inundated the Prime Minister's website to petition him over the Hunting Act and they have also been accused of swamping the Department of Culture, Media and Sport's "Icons" website to ensure that hunting with hounds was portrayed as an icon of Englishness. In that instance, organisers of the website decreed that the icon should be "hunting and the ban" - a move which hunt supporters condemned…. (story)
Telegraph 2.1.07 Hunting ban is top in BBC Radio 4's Today programme poll of which Act to repeal By Charles Clover, Environment Editor - Listeners to BBC Radio 4's Today programme have voted overwhelmingly for the repeal of the 2004 Hunting Act which banned hunting with dogs, it was announced yesterday.... There was some controversy over the result when it was revealed that the panel — which selected five Acts to be included in Today's end-of-year poll — considered excluding the hunting ban because of evidence of a concerted campaign to skew the result.... (story)
Eastern Daily Press 2.1.07 Polls reveal hunting ban divisions - STEVE DOWNES - The controversial ban on hunting with hounds was back in the spotlight last night as the public had its say in two contrasting votes. Almost 2,600 people voted on the EDP website on whether to repeal the 2004 law - with a significant majority saying they wanted to keep it. But a national radio poll, asking which law people most wanted to scrap in 2007, saw more than half of voters opt for abolishing the hunting act.... Of the 2,590 votes, 1,437 (55pc) said the ban should stay, 1,086 (42pc) said it should be repealed and 67 people said they did not care. Meanwhile the poll for Radio Four's Today programme saw 52.8pc of listeners call for the repeal of the hunting act... (story)
Independent 2.1.07 Row as 'Today' programme's poll is won by fox-hunting alliance By Ben Russell, Political Correspondent It should have been a bit of festive fun with a slightly serious political edge. But the Radio 4 Today programme's annual Christmas survey instead led to a row after listeners voted to repeal the ban on fox-hunting. The poll, which has a long history of producing questionable results, caused more controversy this year, with claims that the Countryside Alliance had orchestrated calls to abolish the 2004 Hunting Act. The Alliance dismissed the claims as "sour grapes"… (story)
Times 2.1.07 Red faces as the BBC is outfoxed in listeners' poll - GREG HURST - After falling victim to past embarrassments, it really should have known better. But the BBC suffered fresh ignominy yesterday after admitting that a radio poll had been hijacked by hunt supporters. Ed Stourton, one of the presenters of the Radio 4 Today programme, broke the news to listeners over breakfast with the results of a vote to find the law that the programme’s audience would most like to scrap.... (story)
Daily Mail 1.1.07 FARCE AS RADIO 4 LISTENERS 'MANIPULATE' VOTE ON HUNT BAN by CHRIS BROOKE - A prestigious BBC poll to discover the law most people want scrapped has been denounced as a farce after being 'manipulated' by pro-hunting campaigners. The annual vote by listeners to the Radio 4 Today programme was intended to spark a serious national debate by identifying Britain's 'least useful and most damaging piece of legislation.'... (story)
Evening Standard 1.1.07 COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE ACCUSED OVER RADIO 4 HUNTING VOTE - Listeners to the BBC Radio 4 Today programme have voted overwhelmingly for the repeal of the 2004 act which banned the hunting of foxes with dogs, it was announced. But questions were raised over the 52.8% vote for the repeal of the Hunting Act after the Countryside Alliance confirmed that it had conducted a drive to encourage pro-hunting activists to vote.... (story)
BBC News Online 1.1.07 Hunting ban tops 'unpopular' poll - The Countryside Alliance has admitted conducting a drive to get people to vote for a repeal of the laws banning hunting with dogs, in a Radio 4 poll. The Hunting Act took 52.8% of the votes to top a Today poll of the act people would most like to see reversed.... (story)
Western Morning News 23.12.06 BBC LISTENERS VOTE ON HUNTING BAN REPEAL - The Countryside Alliance expects 10,000 campaigners to vote for the Hunting Bill to be repealed in a BBC poll on which laws should be scrapped.Every winter, a panel of experts for Radio 4's Today programme shortlist five laws from suggestions sent in by listeners on which legislation should be over-turned. But, despite the huge scale of feeling on hunting, the law only just made the list.... (story)

Isle of Wight County Press 12.1.07 PROTESTER LAYING FALSE TRAILS From Liam Thom, 2 Highwood Lane, Rookley, Ventnor: WHILE I realise that the harassment of people chasing an artificial scent across the rural IW is an unpopular activity, I am surprised that those three of four individuals who still continue this pursuit have to get people from the mainland to write their propaganda for them…. I refer to the letter from Miss Watson, of Stockport, Cheshire, (CP, 05/01/07) which mentions various alleged incidents happening a long way from the IW. She also mentions the activities of the IW Hunt in the century before last. What this has to do with trail hunting on the Island in the 21st century, I fail to see…. (story)
Isle of Wight County Press 5.1.07 From Miss Katherine Watson, 60 Rushton Drive, Bramhall, Stockport, Cheshire - MAY I compliment the IW support group of League Against Cruel Sports on backing up a landowner in his struggle to secure an ASBO after repeated hunt trespass on his land. The ten pro-hunt militants, currently taking an appeal against the High Court upholding the Hunting Act to the Low Lands, are vociferous about their rights with no consideration for the rights of fellow citizens... The League Against Cruel Sports support group is making a commendable effort to achieve proper enforcement of the ban on this barbaric idea of a good day out, in spite of execrable threatening and violent behaviour by pro-hunt extremists and deserves every success in 2007. For further details contact Paini Vahvelaeien... (letter)

Yorkshire Post 12.1.07 Smelling a rat From: J Blackburn, Cropton, Pickering. SO it's legal to hunt vermin (rats) with dogs, but illegal to hunt vermin (foxes) with dogs (Yorkshire Post, January 6). I wonder why? Has it anything to do with class prejudice by any chance? (story)

The Sentinel 12.1.07 THRILL WITHOUT THE KILL - I am writing in support of A R Brassington's letter pointing out the strange logic of John Abberley's arguments in support of fox hunting…. (letter)

York Press 12.1.07 Wild fantasy - LET me correct Jeremy D Fox, who seems to be living in a world of his own creation, as seen in his letter (Wild threats, January 4). The League Against Cruel Sports has never "allowed the Government to slaughter more than 11,000 badgers"…. Jenny Barsby, League Against Cruel Sports, Union Street, London. (story)
York Press 4.1.07 Wild threats - MR H GRIFFITH (Arrogant' foxhunters who break the law, Letters, January 2), is against hunting with hounds. Is he not aware that the number of foxes in this country is now completely beyond control? The main reason is the fox's ability to adapt to the urban environment. Now, in towns and cities, well beyond the reach of bullet or hound, the fox has only to eat and reproduce.... Jeremy D Fox, Malton Avenue, York. (story)
York Press 4.1.07 ‘Arrogant’ foxhunters who break the law - RE your report concerning the fox-hunting debate (Riders in a storm, December 27). Why do blood-sport enthusiasts continue to hunt foxes contrary to the law of the land?... The arrogance born of the hunting fraternity's centuries-old tradition of thinking and believing that the countryside and everything in it (people and wildlife) belongs to them, to do with as they wish. Indeed this feudal thinking still prevails in the minds of the hunting hierarchy even today.... Mr H Griffith, Malton (letter)

Chard & Ilminster News 12.1.07 Hunt generates money for local economy - I REFER to a letter in last week's Postbag about the Boxing Day Hunt meet…. It would have cost the taxpayers a pittance to sweep a bit of horse muck up, and the pros far outweigh the cons. There's no doubt that the local hunt and those who turn out generate money into our local economy. Surely local pubs and shops that opened must have benefited that day?... Why should the hunt have to ask a few visitors from outside for the authority to meet?... W. CHURCHILL, Crewkerne Road, Chard (letter)
Chard & Ilminster News 12.1.07 Who picks up the cleaning bill? - CHRIS Gale, (Postbag, January 10 issue) is right to ask under whose authority Chard High Street was closed, and who picks up the bill for cleaning up after the Cotley Harriers held their Boxing Day meet. I hope he gets an answer!... It is time to put an end to Boxing Day meets in the market towns of Somerset. Just as it is time to close the loopholes in the Act. HELEN WEEKS, West Coker, Yeovil (letter)

Newark Advertiser 12.1.07 Better uses for Market Place - I found the reporting of the return of the hunt to Newark Market Place (Salute By The Hunt, Advertiser, January 5) unnecessarily political… I find it hard to believe from the pictures shown in the Advertiser that 1,000 people turned out to support the hunt on New Year’s Day…. I think the sheer number of people that stayed away speaks volumes. — DISAPPOINTED, Newark (Name and address supplied).
Newark Advertiser 12.1.07 Quiet dignity - I felt sick when I read in the Advertiser that “about 1,000 people applauded the hunt’s arrival” in Newark Market Place… The one individual to stand out in the report was Mr Laurence Goff who staged a peaceful protest…. S. GORDON, Winthorpe Road, Newark
Newark Advertiser 12.1.07 Back too soon - I was appalled to read Chiel’s Comments (Hunt In It’s Place, Advertiser, January 5) glorifying the return of the hunt to Newark Market Place… Congratulations to Labour town councillor Laurence Goff and the other peaceful protester for raising the voice of reason. I am ashamed I did not return earlier from my new year trip to support them. — CHARLOTTE ORSON, Newark (Full address supplied). (letters may be in archive)

Petersfield Post 12.1.07 Hunt differences - In your last edition (January 3) you published a picture of the Hursley Hambledon Hunt, a foxhound pack, followed by a report on how they operate with the hounds following "the scent of a fox which was placed on a rag and trailed in front of them." Unfortunately you then take a quote by me from our South Downs Bloodhounds newsletter about our Boxing Day hunt and use it as if I am a ‘hunt leader’ of the Hursley Hambledon Hunt. I would like to make clear that I have no capacity within the Hursley Hambledon Hunt and that I am in fact the Master of the South Downs Bloodhounds…. Jeremy Whaley, Windmill Cottage, Froxfield (letter)

Kent & Sussex Courier 12.1.07 TOWN SUPPORT FOR YOUNG ANGLERS - A Project to teach Crowborough's youth "the art of angling" came under fire this week. Town councillor Julian Salmon, a member of the Green Party and strict vegetarian, was furious at a bid by Crowborough and District Anglers Club for a £225 grant. He said at a meeting of the council's finance and general purposes committee on Tuesday: "It is abuse. As a council, I don't think we should be supporting the abuse of animals by children." But his words were not supported by the rest of the committee… (story)

Argus 12.1.07 Tanks for little ray of sunshine - Thank you and congratulations for the beautiful photograph of the underside of the baby undulate ray (The Argus, January 5). It is striking how human-like the face and body of the dear creature is. Surely such a sight can only re-emphasise that fish are in some ways like us and can, like us, feel pain…. Liz Taylor, Furze Road, Worthing (letter)

Ledbury Reporter 12.1.07 Go vegan! I was interested to read that Tory candidate Harriett Baldwin is going on a "carbon diet". Earthsave International has done research about the damaging effect livestock production is having on climate change. It concludes that by going vegan we can eliminate one of the major sources of methane… PAULINE BURGESS, Richmond Road, Malvern (letter)

Portsmouth News 12.1.07 Foie gras demo held outside restaurant - AN animal-rights group staged a protest outside a restaurant over a 'cruel' French delicacy. The Southern Rights Animal Coalition demonstrated outside Bistro Montparnasse in Palmerston Road, Southsea, to try to get the owners to take foie gras off the menu…. Spokesman Dave Thompson said: 'It is inherently and unjustifiably cruel and it has no place on the high street.' (story)


Ryedale Gazette & Herald 11.1.07 Two sides to a hunt ban tale - CLAIRE METCALFE considers the pros and cons of the controversial act to outlaw hunting with dogs, as the activity appears to grow in popularity.... One hundred riders and more than 600 supporters turned out for the Middleton Hunt's Boxing Day meet in Malton Market Place, a similar number to previous years.... FOR - Tim Easby, huntsman and master of the Middleton Hunt.... AGAINST - Eric Beechey, Yorkshire representative of the League Against Cruel Sports.... (story)

North Devon Journal 11.1.07 WESTCOUNTRY LEGEND DIES - It is with great sadness that I must report the death of one of the West Country's real characters from the farming community.Raymond Burrough died on Boxing Day following an attack by a 15-month-old bull on his home farm near Exeter... As well as being master of the East Devon Hunt, Raymond was a supporter of the Young Farmers' Club. He was always ready to help any young person who wanted to enter the agricultural industry. (story)
Midweek Herald 11.1.07 Huge send off for respected farmer - FRIENDS and colleagues from across East Devon have paid tribute to farmer Raymond Burrough whose funeral service was held on Wednesday last week. Mr Burrough, 70, one of the Westcountry's best known farmers and East Devon Hunt stalwart, died on Boxing Day, two weeks after receiving injuries during an attack by one of his own cattle.... (story)
Mid Devon Gazette 9.1.07 TRIBUTES POUR IN FOR RESPECTED FARMER - Tributes have poured in from the farming community after the death of one of the area' s best-known farmers.Raymond Burrough, 70, died on Boxing Day, 11 days after being injured while moving a bull calf at his Whimple farm... Mr Burrough was a staunch supporter of St Mary's Church, Master of the East Devon Hunt and a fierce supporter of a better deal for young farmers.... (story)
Western Morning News 4.1.07 FITTING SEND-OFF FOR HUNTSMAN AND FARMER - More than 1,000 people packed out a small village church to bid farewell to one of the Westcountry's best-known farmers and huntsmen.The widow of Raymond Burrough - Margaret - had previously worried that she might seem "a little presumptuous" for ordering a marquee for yesterday's sombre occasion. But instead the congregation was so big it spilled into the small village squarein Whimple, East Devon… Mr Burrough was the Master of the East Devon Hunt and stood firm against the ban on hunting with dogs. Canon Ken Parry, who rode with the hunt, said: "He stirred up great support for the Countryside Alliance…. (story)
Exeter Express & Echo 4.1.07 HUNDREDS FLOCK TO BID FAREWELL TO A REVERED FARMER AND HUNTSMAN - Hundreds of people flocked to a small parish church yesterday for the funeral of one of Devon's best-known farmers and huntsmen.The congregation for Raymond Burrough's funeral was so large it spilled into the small village square in Whimple, near Ottery St Mary... As Mr Burrough's coffin was led out of the church followed by his family, three huntsmen stood with hounds from the East Devon Hunt. As the hearse was led away one of Mr Burrough's former fellow huntsmen played Gone Away on the bugle.... His family have asked that donations be made to the Devon Air Ambulance and the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution in place of floral tributes. (story)
Western Morning News 2.1.07 FAMILY TRIBUTE TO TRAGIC FARMER - A grieving family have paid tribute to one of the Westcountry's best-known farmers and top huntsman who was attacked by one of his own cattle. Raymond Burrough, 70, died from his injuries on Boxing Day... (story)
Exeter Express & Echo 1.1.07 FARMER REMEMBERED WITH AFFECTION BY THE COMMUNITY HE SERVED - Tributes have been paid to one of East Devon's best-known farmers, Raymond Burrough, who died on Boxing Day.Mr Burrough, who lived at Gateshayes Farm, Whimple, was injured while moving a bull calf at the farm.... (story)
Western Morning News 30.12.06 FARMER DIES IN BULL ATTACK - PETER HARRISON - One of the Westcountry's best-known farmers - a top huntsman - has died after being attacked by one of his own cattle. Raymond Burrough died on Boxing Day after he was attacked by a bull calf on December 15. He was the Master of the East Devon Hunt, but was also heavily involved in the local Young Farmers' group, the church and parish council, and his death has rocked the community at Whimple village in East Devon... (story)

Western Gazette 11.1.07 TWO SIDES TO THE HUNTING STORY - I Would like to respond to the hunt-bashing diatribes of Neal and Helen Weeks you published last week suggesting the Hunting Act is being flouted at all times and in all places.I took the trouble to go to a Boxing Day hunt at Wedmore with the Clifton Foot and Chilmark Beagles and I spoke to Paul Jelley, the huntmaster, to find out what they actually did. Mr Jelley showed me a bottle of colourless liquid that is an artificial scent. He said it was made of ferret's urine that was accumulated from a fleece that the animals had slept on for some weeks…. Neal referred to the "rich and powerful and ruling classes". Is he referring to "toffs"? I only ask this as most of the followers had Somerset accents and what four-by-four vehicles there were in attendance were battered old Land Rovers, but alas, no Chelsea tractors…. I want to conclude this letter by saying that I am not a member of the Chilmark Beagles and they did not ask me to write in, but there are two sides to a story. Matthew Bell, Ilchester Road, Charlton Mackrell. (letter)

Western Gazette 11.1.07 Hunt figures exaggerated - REGARDING your recent letters questioning the reported numbers attending the local hunts, I must say, what's new?... Those of us who have attended many meets, over even more years, are used to this. If the pro-hunt's own "increasing numbers" were to be believed, Boxing Day sales would have stopped by now, as there wouldn't be anyone left to work in them or buy at them as the whole country would be out killing wildlife, (only in their dreams)…. Mrs Y Street, address supplied (letter)

Berwickshire News 11.1.07 SIR, - I am responding to last week’s Land Lines article by Halidon about fox hunting... WILL RAMSAY, Pittlesheugh Farm, Greenlaw. (letter)
Berwick Advertiser 11.1.07 Not just wealthy and titled who follow the hunt - WILL RAMSAY, Pittlesheugh Farm, Greenlaw (letter)
Southern Reporter 11.1.07 Hunting isn't restricted to the 'wealthy and titled' I am responding to last week's Land Lines article by Halidon about fox hunting. He stated: "I'm amazed at the number of hunt supporters on modest incomes who raise money to help provide alleged sport for the wealthy and titled." Hunt supporters are predominantly people who like to follow the hunt in their cars. With the Berwickshire Hunt, for example, they pay an annual subscription which costs less than entry to a single local rugby match to be able to follow the hounds for two days a week throughout the winter …. none of the 100 or so people at the Berwickshire Hunt meet today (January 8) had a title. The mounted followers included farmers, mechanics, salesmen, children, grooms, engineers, landowners and a post mistress…. if he thinks that hunting in the 21st century has failed to evolve into a courteous club which welcomes all, then he should come and see for himself, rather than write such a prejudiced and poorly-researched article… We welcome you to visit the Berwickshire Hunt, and I am sure that you would be equally welcome at the other packs in the Borders. Will Ramsay, Pittlesheugh Farm, Greenlaw (letter)

Southern Reporter 11.1.07 So, fox hunting has been banned in Scotland. Why then did we encounter hounds, huntsmen and followers at Bonchester Bridge on new Year's Day? Oh – I had quite forgotten. It is now called "flushing out". presumably, the hounds have been put fully in the picture, "you may look at the fox, but must not touch?... JEAN CUNNINGHAM, Birgham, Coldstream (letter)

Independent 11.1.07 Prawns' rights - Sarah Godley (5 January) makes assumptions. How does she know that Edward Pearce thinks it's all right to boil prawns alive? As an animal rights campaigner, I can tell her categorically that the vast majority of those who care about the fate of animals, are both opposed to fox hunting and to the boiling alive of any living creature... NAOMI ELIAS, CHESHAM, BUCKINGHAMSHIRE (letter)
Independent 5.1.07 : Edward Pearce (letter, 4 January) makes the mistake of assuming that his reason for opposing hunting - that he considers it sadistic - means hunt supporters' motivation must be the same - that they also consider it sadistic but unlike him have given in to the sadistic impulse... There is more objective cruelty in one prawn sandwich consumed for the pleasure of the taste than in a whole season's foxhunting... SARAH GODLEY, OCKLEY, SURREY (letter)
Independent 4.1.07 Hunters take evil pleasure in killing - Mr Hoban of Chicago (letter, 1 January), like almost all defenders of hunting, misses the central point... The objection is to killing as sport.... we are entirely right to say that pleasure in killing, the whole core, point and purpose of killing as pastime, is evil. Not to see this simple truth is to be morally defective. EDWARD PEARCE, THORMANBY, NORTH YORKSHIRE (letter)
Independent 1.1.07 Silly disputes about hunting and status - As an American who lived and observed hunting in your fine country for over a year, I find the debate on hunting a bit silly and not too different from the debate here in the US. Right, wrong or indifferent, hunting does provide an ecological balance... I find silly that usually the people who have no direct interest, meaning city-dwellers and/or people never exposed to hunting, are the biggest opponents of hunting. This is like the country folks protesting about the amount of pollution London, Birmingham or Manchester generate, or passing judgement on the lifestyle of city folk... I think half the controversy is aligned in the status gap, which is more pronounced in the UK - FRANCIS GERARD HOBAN, CHICAGO (letter)

Peterborough Evening Telegraph 11.1.07 Readers' Letters: Muzzle the dogs to save the fox - WITH reference to the story on the Boxing Day Hunt (ET, January 2), I cannot believe that an eagle, even in its wild state, would attack an animal as big as a fox. Surely a simple solution would be to muzzle the dog, then the thrill of the chase could be enjoyed with no cruelty being involved?... ROY RICHARDSON, Oundle Road, Orton Longueville, Peterborough (story)

Hexham Courant 11.1.07 Hunts do not enjoy unanimous support - I HOPE your readers don’t get the impression from your front page article (Courant, December 29) that all country folk support hunting, because this is certainly not the case... HAZEL DEAN, Corbridge (letter)

Kidderminster Shuttle 11.1.07 Old lead weights to blame for swan poisoning - MICHAEL HEYLIN Secretary Specialist Anglers' Alliance Crofts Path, Hemel Hempstead (letter)
Kidderminster Shuttle 4.1.07 Woolly thinking on angling ban - I WRITE in response to the call by Jan Harrigan for support for a ban on fishing in Bewdley town centre. While the work that Wychbold Swan Rescue Centre is to be applauded and supported, we need to think carefully before bringing in yet more restrictions on people's personal choice and freedom. I offer a number of observations: l Use of lead shot of the sizes indicated by research to be causing lead poisoning in swans was banned by law in 1987. It has not been available in shops in the UK since then and acceptable substitutes are now in use.... GRAHAM WILLIAMSON Bewdley (letter)

Western Gazette 11.1.07 BADGER FAN SEEKS HELP WITH SURVEY - A Shaftesbury badger enthusiast is calling on local residents who have the animals in their gardens to let him know so he can add the information to a survey he is undertaking.Nature and wildlife fan Joe Hashman is compiling information on badger existence and movements in the town to help secure their future and provide a valuable resource to consult when people are looking to build there…. (story)

Lancashire Telegraph 11.1.07 Slaughter footage should be banned ... I was appalled to read how Muslims were able to log on to the internet, buy an animal online to sacrifice to mark Eid celebrations, and then watch footage of the slaughter called qurbani. This should not be allowed. MRS L M JACKSON, Haslingden Road, Blackburn (story)

Worcester News 11.1.07 This delicacy is just a barbaric act of cruelty - I am very disappointed to see that a local business, the Glasshouse brasserie, in Worcester, is advertising foie-gras as part of its menu.... Justin Kerswell, Campaigns Manager, Viva!, Bristol. (letter)

Torquay Herald Express 11.1.07 SPARE THE BEARS FOR CEREMONIAL HATS, URGES MP - Adrian Sanders is urging the Ministry of Defence to rethink the "unbearable" use of real bear fur in the caps of the Queen's Guards. The Torbay MP has joined forces with fellow MPs, including Glenda Jackson and animal rights charity People For the Ethical Treatment of Animals, to try to get the tradition halted… (story)

Glasgow Herald 11.1.07 Row as charity posters compare disabled to pets - CALUM MACDONALD - Provocative posters comparing people who have learning disabilities to pets have been heavily criticised by animal rights groups.... Enable, the leading charity in Scotland for children and adults with learning disabilities, wants the posters to show that animal charities attract almost twice as many donors as disability charities... John Robins, secretary of the charities Animal Concern Advice Line and Save Our Seals Fund, said: "Enable Scotland is skating on thin ice in a pair of tackety boots. They forget that the welfare state was established to ensure that the educational and health needs of the people of this country would be paid for through our taxes…." (story)


Western Daily Press 10.1.07 A LESSON IN HOW TO RIG THE RESULT - Well done, the Countryside Alliance, for having the ingenuity to rig a BBC radio poll on which Act of Parliament should be repealed. If you cannot win an argument legitimately, why not fiddle a survey result?Because most people who participate in discussion, through mechanisms such as the Today programme's poll, expect a serious attempt at debate, that's why!... Mike Bird North Wales (letter)

BBC News Online 10.1.07 Dead fox 'tied and set on by dog' - A dead fox found with "horrendous injuries" in Kent may have had a dog set on it, the RSPCA has said. The animal welfare charity said the animal was found with a snare around its neck, bald legs, and puncture wounds to its back legs… (story)
Kent Messenger 10.1.07 RSPCA appeal after fox suffers horrific death by Kirsty Parkin - A FOX has been found dead with a rope tied around the neck and with horrendous injuries. The animal was found just off a roundabout in Singleton Hill at Ashford on Tuesday. It had a snare tied around it and bald legs and puncture wounds to them... (story)

Gloucestershire Echo 10.1.07 OFFICERS SWOOP ON POACHING SUSPECTS - Eight people have been arrested on suspicion of poaching after a police raid near Dumbleton.Officers swooped on land in Great Washbourne early on Monday after reports of a group of men coursing - hunting for rabbits or hares with dogs.... They included a 29-year-old from Charlton, near Pershore, and a 15-year-old, 18-year-old and 32-year-old from Rowley Regis in the West Midlands.... (story)

Dundee Courier 10.1.07 Important points ignored - Scottish Natural Heritage’s east area director, based at Battleby is a Mr Andrew Bachell. He recently used the national press to assure the UK’s trout anglers that shooting cormorants on Loch Leven would be both illegal and ineffective. This statement ignores the Fisheries Research Service report that cormorants consume 80,000 trout a year on the loch, it also ignores that when Loch Leven fished well the management shot up to 300 cormorants a year to protect the fishery and local jobs.... Michael C. Smith. Threapmuir Farm, Cleish, Kinross. (letter)

Blackpool Gazette 10.1.07 Facts on how animals die - The way animals are killed in slaughterhouses is something most of us don't want to think about but the incredible fact that nearly two and a half million are slaughtered each day means it is an issue we can't ignore.... For more information , contact Viva!... Susan Cooper, St Patricks Road South,St Annes (letter )

Scotsman 10.1.07 Rights group urges Big Brother viewers to roar on Shetty - TELEVISION viewers were yesterday being encouraged to vote for the Celebrity Big Brother contestant Shilpa Shetty by a high-profile animal-rights group, for her backing of campaign on behalf of circus animals. The Bollywood actress posed for a campaign by the rights group PETA in which she crouched in a cage, dressed in a tiger-striped body suit, with the tagline "Beaten, Lonely and Abused - Boycott the Circus"…. (story)


Western Daily Press 9.1.07 HUNT 'USED NATURE RESERVE' - Anti-hunt protesters in Somerset have called for the prosecutions of huntsmen who they allege illegally charged across a nature reserve with a pack of hounds. Helen Weeks, of West Coker, near Yeovil, said members of the Cattistock Hunt broke the law when they burst on to Hardington Moor nature reserve on December 30.... (story)

Western Mail 9.1.07 Repeal theHunting Act is new resolution - Steve Dube, Western Mail - THE debate over the future of hunting has shifted from the survival of the tradition to the survival of the ban itself.... "We have moved the debate from one about the survival of hunting to one about the survival of the Hunting Act," said Alliance chief executive Simon Hart… Mr Hart, the former Master of the South Pembrokeshire Hunt, who lives in Narberth, said, until last year, every December 26 since the General Election of 1997 brought in a Labour Government pledged to a vote on a hunting ban had prompted the question of whether it would be the last Boxing Day meets….(story)

Guardian 9.1.07 Country diary - Wortley - Roger Redfern - After the endless gloom at the end of the year, New Year's Day dawned bright, the sky of palest duck-egg blue and punctuated with skeins of silky cloud drifting east off the high Pennine watershed.... A heron lifted on leisurely wings as we passed Top Cliffe Wood and was soon lost in the shadows of dusk. Then we heard the calls of the Ecclesfield Beagles, followed by the huntsman's horn. Later we could make out the vague shapes of hunt followers as the beagles came closer across the great open pastures... (story)

Western Daily Press 9.1.07 TIGHTEN UP ACT - As a regular reader of the Western Daily Press, I am sick and tired of protests from hunt supporters about the hunting ban... S Palmer Cam Dursley (story)

Argus 9.1.07 Foxes, hounds and people at risk - Hunts not only flout the law with impunity (Letter, January 2), they also put human lives at risk with their so-called sport. On December 28, I was among anti-hunt monitors who spotted a hunting hound running loose on the busy A24 dual carriageway, causing cars to swerve and brake.... Also, on the same day, hounds were heard "in cry" and almost on to a fox alongside a busy lane in Coolham. The traffic was at a standstill again and hunters only called the hounds off when anti-hunt monitors began filming… Margaret Hackney, Shoreham (letter)

Northern Echo 9.1.07 HUNTING BAN - I SEE the hunt fraternity are at it again, spouting their propaganda, aided and abetted by the Countryside Alliance. Has your anonymous writer (HAS, Jan 2) had nothing better to do but follow hunts all over England for 70 years? Get off your high horse and face it, hunting is a dinosaur and should have been banned years ago. It is about killing for fun.... Name and address supplied. (letter)

Exeter Express & Echo 9.1.07 CHURCH'S ASSEMBLY FROWNS ON HUNTING - In the report on the funeral of Raymond Burrough, Echo, January 4, I find it hard to understand why Canon Ken Parry had to comment about anti- hunt people.I have never been able to work out why many church people take part in hunting when their own National Assembly of the Church of England reported before the hunt ban as follows: "The Church Assembly is of the opinion that the practices of hare coursing, deer hunting and other hunting are cruel…. K M Moyle, Collins Park, East Budleigh (letter)

Hartlepool Mail 9.1.07 Killing fields - EIGHT foxes have been found beheaded in fields on the outskirts of Hartlepool.... police fear a trophy hunting, animal killer is on the loose. One had been bound by its front and back legs, another's tail had been hacked off and one appeared to have been shot.... The first carcass was found by a walker on Boxing Day in an unnamed location near to Hart village.... (story)

Manchester Evening News 9.1.07 Animal activists to target airport - ANIMAL rights activists are to target Manchester Airport in their campaign against a company they say breeds animals for medical research abroad. The Northern Animal Rights Network plans to demonstrate outside the cargo terminal.... Luke Steele, of NARN, said: "The first of many demonstrations against the airport is to be held this coming weekend."… (story)
Yorkshire Evening Post 5.1.07 Animal rights activists seek airport pledge by peter Lazenby - ANIMAL rights activists are to target Leeds-Bradford airport in a campaign to halt transportation of animals for scientific experimentation.... The campaign has been launched by Northern Animal Rights Network (Narn). The group is also targeting a Yorkshire firm involved in breeding animals for experimentation, B&K Universal, based at Grimston, near Hull.... (story)
Yorkshire Post 3.1.07 ANIMAL PROTESTERS TARGET AIRPORT - Activists to step up campaign against laboratory specimen firm - Alexandra Wood - ANIMAL rights activists will be demonstrating outside Leeds Bradford Airport as they step up their campaign to stop an East Yorkshire firm breeding animals for use in medical research. The Northern Animal Rights Network (NARN) says it will begin a series of protests, with the demonstration on Saturday January 13, aimed at cutting off the foreign market for research animals from B&K Universal.... NARN spokesman Luke Steele said: "We have been told that B&K use whichever airport is most feasible. We know they are being taken to Sweden. There are also rodents that are taken all over the world. We have evidence of them being taken as far away as Australia."… (story)

Derby Evening Telegraph 9.1.07 SPEAK UP OVER ANIMAL TESTING - I Feel sure that readers who are animal-lovers will be outraged when they hear about a new piece of legislation to be passed in a few weeks by the European Parliament called REACH, which could see a return to testing cosmetic ingredients on animals... Elaine Jacklin, Welbeck Road, Long Eaton. (letter)
Nottingham Evening Post 8.1.07 LETTER: TESTS ON ANIMALS - I feel sure that any of your readers who are animal lovers will be outraged to hear about a new piece of legislation, to be passed in a few weeks by the European Parliament, called 'REACH' which could see a return to testing cosmetic ingredients on animals.... For more information please contact 'The British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection'... ELAINE JACKLIN Welbeck Road Long Eaton (story)

Manchester Evening News 9.1.07 A cruel food - I AM very disappointed to see that Le Petit Blanc restaurant, King Street, Manchester, is advertising foie-gras on its menu... Justin Kerswell, Viva! (story)


Western Morning News 8.1.07 FANTASTIC RESULT OF BBC'S REPEAL POLL - I read with interest your reporting of the BBC Radio 4 Today programme's Christmas Repeal.I was delighted, as were all of my fellow hunting supporters, that the Hunting Act 2004 was voted the piece of legislation most worthy of repeal. How fantastic this result was - yet what a shame that the Countryside Alliance is coming under fire for rigging this vote and the BBC is being attacked for allowing it to.... No one accuses the political parties of rigging an election because they campaigned.... James Tatlow, South Devon (letter)

Yorkshire Post 8.1.07 Hounded out From: John Grice, Durkar, Wakefield. I WAS amused to hear the result of the Radio 4 poll that nominated the hunting ban for abolition. I am not surprised. the Hunting Bill is one of the most vindictive ever to have gone through Parliament (letter)

Argus 8.1.07 Support is growing - We were among the hundreds who squeezed into the Square at Elham to support the East Kent Hunt's second Boxing Day meet since the Hunting Act.... Paddy Ellerman, Dymchurch, Romney Marsh, Kent (letter)

Argus 8.1.07 Welcome anarchy - The article "Hunt supporters turn out in force" reports "hunting is proving more popular than ever". Who came to this conclusion? Was there a poll or is it just another statement from the person who believes huntspeople are above the law?... As an anti-hunt monitor, I have had huntspeople try to run us down with their horses, attack us and, in some cases, threaten to kill us… Barbara Trenholm, Brittany Road, Worthing (letter)

Argus 8.1.07 The law should not be overlooked - Sue Baumgardt's response to the suggestion that as so many people still hunt the law should be changed is to argue robust policing of these arrogant people is required... If hunters claim they are above the law, Nick Herbert, shadow police reform minister, should put aside his personal prejudice and use his position of influence to ensure the police do their job. David Hammond, North Court, Hassocks (letter)
Argus 2.1.07 Hunters appear to be above the law - Charlotte Fiander, spokeswoman for the Countryside Alliance, states that since so many people are still out hunting, the law should be changed... I've been out regularly monitoring hunts in Sussex and seen a rider laying a so-called trail that the hounds just walked past without one putting its nose to the ground. Meanwhile, monitors were harassed and pushed by hunt stewards if they set one foot off the footpath. A woman monitor had her camera pushed into her face and another was nearly run down by a hunt supporter's vehicle, while police stood by and did nothing. However, a monitor who was accused of pushing hunt supporters, despite there being no evidence to support this and police not witnessing the act, was arrested on the spot and put in handcuffs.... Sue Baumgardt, Stoneham Road, Hove (letter)

Worcester News 8.1.07 Hunting law was not about animals - Unfortunately, Wendy Hands (Letters, January 2) is under the impression that the Hunting Act (2004) is about animal welfare. No, this legislation was purely to keep class war obsessed Labour MPs busy while Tony Blair got on with his war in Iraq. As these politicians indulged themselves bashing toffs in red jackets where was their concern for our troops who often fought without the protection of flak jackets?... Jon Burgess, Malvern. (story)
Worcester News 2.1.07 Don’t use birds to get round fox laws - I am not clear why some of the hunting fraternity claim that the Hunting Act is not working, since I have read in the press of at least three individuals who have been successfully prosecuted this year for breaching its terms.... I don't think that those hunters who, to get around the terms of the Act, have turned to misusing birds of prey as part of the hunt do themselves any services.... WENDY HANDS Upton upon Severn (letter)

Independent 8.1.07 Airgun community is law-abiding - I am a regular member and contributor to the internet-based bulletin board AirgunBBS and I found the article "Cumbrian nights lit up by poachers feeding demand for venison" by Ian Herbert (9 December) both personally offensive and inaccurate…. The BBS exists to support the legal and safe use of airguns and to offer support to the sport. ANDY MCLEAN, FOR AND ON BEHALF OF THE BBS BOARD, NEWTON-LE-WILLOWS, MERSEYSIDE (letter)

Times 8.1.07 Trophy killing - Trophy hunting in Africa is not an economic silver bullet ("Big game trophy hunters ‘help to save rare species’ ”, Jan 4). While estimates indicate that trophy hunting generates £100 million in revenue to 23 sub-Saharan countries, this figure is misleading, as 17 of the poorest of these countries receive a mere £1.5 millon… ROSA HILL, The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), London SE1 (story)

Western Morning News 8.1.07 LIVE FISH BAIT BAN FEARED - Anglers in the Westcountry fear that moves to ban fish being used as live bait in Scotland could result in similar legislation south of the border.... Mark Barrett, general secretary of the Pike Anglers' Club of Great Britain, said: "To have the law change like this on your doorstep is going to be a concern for people in the rest of the UK."… Green Party MSP Eleanor Scott, who is deputy convenor of the environment and rural affairs development committee and who helped form the Bill, said: "Anglers won't like me saying it, but fish do feel pain and we felt there was a cruelty issue here."… (story)
Sunday Telegraph 7.1.07 Anglers fear ban on 'cruel' live bait will spread By Jasper Copping, Sunday Telegraph - Anglers are to be banned from using live fish as bait after politicians decided it was cruel. The ban, which will apply in Scotland, has angered fishermen south of the border who believe it has handed a major victory to animal rights campaigners calling for similar legislation in the rest of Britain.... The blanket ban was a last-minute amendment to the Aquaculture and Fisheries Bill, which has just passed through the Scottish Parliament without any objections.... Yvonne Taylor, from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said the ban was a "massive first step" in the group's fight for one in the rest of Britain… (story)

Oxford Mail 8.1.07 Animal rights activists rack up litany of unsolved crimes By Phil Vinter - Animal rights activists have so far got away with committing about 20 crimes including arson, blackmail and vandalism since work restarted on Oxford University's research laboratory. As yet, no-one has been charged with any of the offences committed since work began again on the laboratory in South Parks Road at the end of 2005.... Pro animal-testing group Pro-Test spokesman Iain Simpson said he felt that policing of animal rights protesters had become much more effective than ever over the last year.... ALF spokesman Robin Webb added: "It is not surprising none of these incidents have been solved. The ALF has no structure. It is just individuals or groups of individuals acting under a series of policies that have been in place for 30 years. Therefore there is no chain of command for the police to gain information on." (story)

Gloucester Citizen 8.1.07 VEGGIES TO SHARE IN SOCIAL LIFE - A Vegan couple from Dursley are launching a new social group for people with similar interests. Husband and wife Nick and Jill Chappell are hoping like-minded people will join them for the inaugural session of the Mid-Gloucestershire Veggie Friends in Dursley tomorrow. The couple, from Harding's Drive, have shunned eating animals or animal by-products for the past 20 years.... (story)


Sunday Times 7.1.07 HUNTING STEREOTYPES: Rod Liddle (Comment, last week) described hunt supporters as "toffs and their genuflecting peasant followers”, who "trot about braying to one another, condescending to the lower orders”. I went out hunting for the first time last week with the Essex Farmers’ and Union hunt and there were no toffs or peasants. — Sarah Przybylska, Chelmsford, Essex. (story)

Sunday Times 7.1.07 Shooting hits spot as networking tool - RICHARD WOODS AND JOHN ELLIOTT - Executives and women go for their gun - PUT down those golf clubs and go for your gun: shooting is fast becoming the social networking sport of choice. A survey of 2,000 companies and 14,000 directors shows that shooting is soaring in popularity.... The British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) saw its membership rise to 128,000 last year, up from 110,00 in 1996... Campaigners for animal rights are concerned some shoots are so commercial that they have turned into massacres, rather than sport that produces food for the pot. Some 35m birds are reared each year just to be shot.... (story)

Sunday Independent 7.1.07 'If the bird flies, you shoot at it' - DAMP and wet; a typical St Stephen's Day.... I'm off shooting. The venue is a farm near Tallanstown, Co Louth. This is ancient countryside and one can't help feeling that the Celts hunted with hounds across it in bygone ages... This is a democratic sport. You take turns shooting and beating. Half of your day will be spent crashing through the wet undergrowth. Hard going, but you have the enjoyment of seeing hunting dogs at work in their true element.... (story)

Observer 7.1.07 All the young prudes - Brendan O'Neill - There was a time when youth (or "yoof", in patronising Janet Street-Porter speak) were considered the most free-thinking and radical section of society…. Today's "radical" youth protesters are deeply conservative and censorious, wishing to hold society back, shut down debate and keep the uppity oiks in their place… Some radical youngsters throw their weight into protesting for animal rights and against vivisection, which is one of the most anti-humanist streaks in contemporary politics. Their radical animalism elevates the interests of monkeys over men, and depicts humans - especially of the science-studying variety - as wicked and evil. Animal rights activism sums up everything that is wrong with radical protest today, where youthful activists actively campaign against humans and human interests rather than in defence of progress and equality for people everywhere…. (story)


Independent 6.1.07 Deborah Orr: It's not just the upper classes that are getting away with deadly blood sports - When a pair of Rottweilers belonging to her mother's boyfriend mauled five-month-old Cadey-Lee Deacon to death, the nation remained largely decorous about the glimpse into social chaos afforded by the tragedy... It's often said that the animus against fox-hunting is motivated by class hatred, although those who are most fond of making the accusation are less happy to acknowledge that among the lower classes, rituals that celebrate "nature red in tooth and claw" were outlawed long ago…. My New Year's Day was spent at a large woodland barbecue, mingling with city-dwellers who couldn't understand what the red-coated riders could possibly be doing as fox-hunting had been banned…. Enquiries revealed that this hunt was famous for having failed to catch a fox in eight years. Instead of banning this crew, give them a grant. (story)

Western Daily Press 6.1.07 HUNTING IS NOT SUCH A PRETTY SPECTACLE BEHIND THE SCENES - Oh, what a pretty picture the hunting fraternity painted for us all on Boxing Day!... Where was that special breed of local lout with their terriers? Where were the foul-mouthed followers, the faces of the children blooded for the "fun" of being at their first kill?... Show the face of an exhausted deer, its eyes staring, its tongue hanging out, its breath rasping, its body quivering, not knowing where to turn to get away from its persecutors…. R M Morris Minehead Somerset (letter)

Irish Independent 6.1.07 Hunt cruelty is abhorred - The hunting fraternity are very much mistaken if they think opposition to the barbaric blood sports of fox, hare and deer hunting has died away.... Those who engage in terrorising and hounding animals for fun are particularly despicable and could be described as the adult version of the schoolyard bully... AIDEEN YOURELL, IRISH COUNCIL AGAINST BLOOD SPORTS, PO BOX 88, MULLINGAR, CO WESTMEATH (letter)

The Sentinel 6.1.07 HOUNDED BY HUNT LAW-BREAKERS - I do not believe in law and order in this country any longer. I thought hunting with hounds was against the law but apparently if you are a toff you can break the law.... (letter)

Aberdeen Press & Journal 6.1.07 SHOOTING-BAN CAMPAIGNERS TARGETED - JOE WATSON - I Did something last week that I haven't done for years, and boy did I enjoy it.... it involved walking ploughed fields, climbing fences and then watching a group of conservationists at work. I say conservationists somewhat tongue in cheek as the group I was with were armed with shotguns in pursuit of pheasants that seemed rather adept at evading their fire.... Let us not forget that political correctness gone daft has already outlawed hunting by hounds on both sides of the border. There is much talk that angling and sport shooting are next on the agenda for a small-minded, ignorant minority. Hunting was deemed the pursuit of toffs when it was anything but. Sport shooting and angling are likewise far from exclusive.... (story)

Nottingham Evening Post 6.1.07 WE AREN'T ANIMAL LOVERS - For some reason that eludes me, we like to think of ourselves as a nation of animal lovers. Back in the 18th Century we had bear baiting, rat pits, cock fights and dog fighting. There are still a few of us human enough to feed wild birds, but that wholesome legacy is now in grave danger.... E. BODDINGTON Manifold Gardens, The Meadows (letter)

Independent 6.1.07 Circus animals - Something stinks about using animals in circuses, but it's not emanating from animal dung ("French turn noses up at the circus", 3 January) . Beating and whipping animals and forcing them to live in tiny cages is condemned by caring people worldwide… RHONDA COOKE, LONDON SE18 (letter)


Southern Reporter 5.1.07 The Highs and lows that made the headline news ... HUNTS TARGETED: Animal rights groups say they will monitor Borders hunts such as the Buccleuch this autumn to make sure the hunting with dogs ban is not broken... (story)

Cumberland News 5.1.07 MP says blood-free hunts behind boost in supporters - HUNDREDS of supporters turned out for the Blencathra Hunt’s traditional New Year’s Day meet at Mosedale. It coincided with Carlisle Labour MP Eric Martlew’s claim that the ban on foxhunting is the reason for increased numbers attending hunts over New Year and Christmas.... The Cumberland Farmers’ New Year’s Day hunt at Aikton and their Boxing Day hunt at Welton – the second since the ban came into force in February 2005 – were well attended.... (story)

Hexham Courant 5.1.07 Service boosts servants’ fund By WILL GREEN - MEMBERS of the Tynedale Hunt have raise £1,200 for the Hunt Servants’ Fund from the collection at their annual carol service which was held at Holy Trinity Church, Matfen.... (story)

Bedford Times & Citizen 5.1.07 Everyone has a stake in this country's wildlife - The Times & Citizen gave great prominence and support to the Oakley Hunt (T&C, December 29). Strange then that no effort appears to have been made in that edition to publish any views from the anti-hunting section of Bedfordshire's public to give some balance to the debate…. Name and address supplied
Hunt supporters should adopt law of democracy - Your not terribly balanced front page story on the Oakley Hunt vowing to "revert back to (their) traditions", (T&C, December 29), almost brought a tear to my eye. These would be the traditions of chasing foxes and stags across the countryside to the point of complete exhaustion, with a view to literally ripping them asunder in an orgiastic bloodlust, for fun… Perhaps they could advertise their future events more widely so those amongst us who are equally disappointed that cock fighting and badger baiting are unlawful can lend support. Willy White, Brook Street, Bedford
Carry on hunting - Re: The Oakley Hunt story. It is disgusting legislation. This Government seems bent on taking away everything English and historic. Carry on hunting and let's continue to see and hear the hunt for many years to come… Mick Groom, by email (letters)

Western Mail 5.1.07 SUPERFICIALLY, A PICTURESQUE SIGHT - The fox-hunters are boasting they had their best ever Boxing Day and say they were cheered by people who came to watch them.What these hunters don't seem to realise is people come to see a picturesque and historical scene. I, also, would like to watch this kind of entertainment if I knew it didn't involve killing a wild animal at the end.... Norah Pound Wroughton Wiltshire (letter)

Western Mail 5.1.07 UNDUE INFLUENCE - What a sad and disturbing picture on the front of the Western Daily Press (January 2), showing a little girl with the words "Born to Hunt" on the back of her riding jacket.Her parents should be utterly ashamed… Robert Bagnall Tewkesbury (letter)

Western Mail 5.1.07 HUNTING MAY YET LEAD TO TIME BEHIND BARS - Oh dear. Huntsman Curtis Thompson seems to think we should all be grateful for the fact that hunting saved him from a life of crime ("Horses saved me from life of crime", Post, January 2).Now, instead of the threat he posed to people, we have the threat he poses to animals…. Judi Hewitt, by email (story)

Barnsley Chronicle 5.1.07 Hunters still defy the law By Terry Bentham, Albany Close, Wombwell - I note with regret that the blood lust gripped people again on Boxing day with an estimated 300 hunts on the warpath. Some of these 300 hunts are openly breaking the law which they claim is unworkable.... (letter may be in archive)

Wisbech Standard 5.1.07 No wildlife has a chance- Your readers may remember me writing last year about the plague of the pheasant gunmen. Following my letter last year I received some threats from the gunmen, who threatened to shoot my peafowl. But I received much more support for my stand against them…. It is now possible to take out ASBOs against the shoots if they disturb you in any anti social way. The League Aainst Cruel Sports can be contacted… JULIAN KIRK, Meerdyke Farm, Harps Hall Road, Walton Highway (letter)

Bolton Evening News 5.1.07 Shoot guns in a club, not at animals - I REFER to the letter in Saturday's edition from Chris Bessell, "Guns are safe in the right hands", in reply to my letter of the preceding Tuesday…. Perhaps my last sentence should have read: "The sooner the shooting of animals is confined to history books, the better." I hope that clarifies the position. Roy Caswell, Beverley Road, Bolton (letter)

Guardian 5.1.07 Animal welfare - Professor Peter Singer may teach at Princeton, but as an Australian he has still much to learn about American politics and views on animal welfare (Americans care as much about animal welfare as Europeans do, but money counts for more in politics, January 3). First, animal welfare is an issue that transcends traditional US party lines.... Second, Professor's Singer's assertion that there is no federal legislation on the welfare of farm animals is not true.... Kenneth Satterfield, Director of public affairs, Americans for Medical Progress, Alexandra, Virginia (letter)
Guardian 3.1.07 Tethered by the wallet - Americans care as much about animal welfare as Europeans do, but money counts for more in politics - Peter Singer - Amid all the excitement about the Democrats gaining control of Congress in the November elections, one big election result was largely ignored.... In Arizona, citizens can, by gathering enough signatures, put a proposed law to a direct vote. This year, one of the issues on the ballot was an act to prohibit tethering or confining a pregnant pig, or a calf raised for veal, in a manner that prevents the animal from turning around freely, lying down, and extending its limbs.... (story)

Yorkshire Post 5.1.07 Recipe for loathing From: Bridget Noble, Yarm Road, Eaglescliffe, Stockton-on-Tees. I FOUND Bernard Ingham's article "Why I've had a bellyful of the food fascists" (Yorkshire Post, December 27 ) deeply offensive. Those of us who are vegetarians and only eat organic and free-range food do so because we believe passionately in animal welfare and healthy food… (story)


Morpeth Herald 4.1.07 Riding out to greet New Year - HUNDREDS of people turned out for the traditional New Year's Day Meet of the Morpeth Hunt.... (story)

North Devon Journal 4.1.07 THE HUNT WILL ALWAYS BE THE HUNTED - This week's visit took me to The Square at Great Torrington on Boxing Day for the annual Meet of the Torrington Farmers' Hunt. While there I found a large number of horses and riders in The Square enjoying the meet and sharing seasonable good humour with the hundreds of supporters who were "on foot".It somewhat surprises me when I hear critics of hunting talking of the "toffs in red coats" and the "ladies riding side saddle" because, to be honest, in Torrington on Boxing Day I found only local, down-to-earth folk of all ages and backgrounds just enjoying a tradition that was doing no harm to anyone or anything…. (story)

Rutland & Stamford Mercury 4.1.07 Hunt supporters turn out - CROWDS of people turned out on New Year's Day to see the Cottesmore Hunt ride out of Uppingham. More than 1,000 spectators braved the cold wind to see riders and hounds for the traditional New Year meet at Uppingham Market Place... (story)

Surrey Mirror 4.1.07 Boxing day hunt was 'a success' By John Geoghegan - "DEFIANT" hunt organisers have declared a meeting on Boxing Day a resounding success - two years after fox hunting was banned… The Old Surrey, Burstow and West Kent Hunt meets in east Surrey, west Kent and parts of Sussex and dates back to the mid to late 18th century. The hounds have been kennelled in Felbridge since 1908…(story)

Ryedale Gazette & Herald 4.1.07 Protesters stay away as bumper hunt rides out By Haydn Lewis - THERE was a bumper turn out for the traditional New Year's Day hunt at Thornton-le-Dale. This year about 350 people turned out for the meet - despite the law preventing hunting with hounds, which many thought might spell the end of the tradition. About 40 riders and more than 30 hounds took part in the Derwent Hunt meet at The Hall, Thornton-le-Dale, compared to last year, when about 30 riders took part... (story)

Cornishman or West Briton 4.1.07 LITTLE WONDER IT'S SO FLAWED - Was there ever as ill thought-out and almost impossible law to enforce as the anti-hunting with hounds legislation?Anyone who watched the various Cornish meets on Boxing Day will probably not have noticed anything different from the time before the legislation was enacted. As usual, the devil is in the detail; rather than ban hunts with hounds altogether, we have a mish-mash of what is acceptable and what is not.... (story)

Tamworth Herald 4.1.07 ATHERSTONE HUNT GATHERS MORE SUPPORT IN TOWN - TRACY ROBBINS - Support for the historic Atherstone Hunt continues to grow with huge turnouts at both festive meets. It is nearly two years since the hunting ban became law but Atherstone Hunt, together with other hunts throughout the country, has continued to gain support.... (story)

Cotswold Journal 4.1.07 Traditional scene as hunt heads off from Stow By Anita Deshmukh - The Heythrop Hunt drew a massive crowd when it gathered for its traditional New Year's Day meet in Stow. Hundreds watch the hounds and riders muster and Liz Wills, joint master of the hunt, said there were no signs of protest that she saw.... (story)

Irish Independent 4.1.07 Fox-hunting priests are 'hounded out of the chase' - John Cooney - FOX-hunting priests in Ireland are being hounded out of the chase by animal rights' activists. Influential international Catholic journal 'The Tablet' has reported that an American animal rights website has been actively targeting hunting priests.... Last night Aideen Yourell, of the Mullingar-based Irish Council Against Blood Sports, confirmed that some years ago she had conveyed her concerns to a group of Irish bishops about priests being involved in hunting. But she strongly denied that the Council has used intimidatory methods against priests.... (story)

Western Daily Press 4.1.07 HUNTING CHARADE - I Could give you many positive and good reasons why it was correct for hunting to be banned. But what I'd like to comment on is the Boxing Day meet that was mentioned on Wednesday, December 27, in your paper.This is not something to celebrate or cheer about that. Hundreds of thousands of supposedly intelligent rational human beings still have the sick desire to pursue a wild animal trying to survive in the natural instinctive way it knows.... Miss H Nicholas Cirencester (letter)

Western Daily Press 4.1.07 HUNTSMEN HAVE THE LAST LAUGH (JANUARY 2) - I'm not so sure if you should be weeping at the Hunting Act or the police's and the CPS's attitude towards it.With impending prosecutions imminent, maybe these hunt masters will be rubbing their hands less gleefully come the next Boxing Day... Simon Hacker Wotton-under-Edge
No turning back (January 1) - I put dog food out for a little fox every night. If he were to be hunted, chased and eventually killed by a pack of dogs, it would break my heart. Lisa Everton Newcastle-under-Lyme (letters)

Sheffield Star 4.1.07 Blair cabinet ''in favour of fox hunting and police 'do nothing''' - The Blair cabinet is strongly in favour of hunting. They fought against a ban for seven years, inventing one obstacle after another in breach of their own promise and in defiance of a heavy majority of the population and of their own back-benchers. Now that we have a ban, at last, the police are refusing to enforce it.... Armchair Sab, S10 (letter)

Grimsby Telegraph 4.1.07 SPORT'S RECORD TURNOUT - Fox-hunters are claiming a record Boxing Day turnout saying that this proves the unworkability of the ban on the sport. Yet a closer examination shows most huntsmen and hounds are, in fact, chasing an artificial trail... Thus if the present status quo can be maintained there is no need for a future Conservative government to inflame passions by seeking to overturn the existing ban... Tim Mickleburgh, Littlefield Lane, Grimsby. (letter)

Western Gazette 4.1.07 ANGER AT SEASONAL HUNT MEETING - So the Western Gazette chose to run a story about hunting and the Boxing Day meets, and also to advertise the meets for the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale hunt.This is the proof of the fact that hunts are illegally hunting, with no police action. The few people out there to prove this fact are being intimidated, blocked and hassled, with no real policing... Neal, Dorset Anti-Bloodsports and Animal Action, Dorchester. (letter)

Western Gazette 4.1.07 ON December 30 while out monitoring the Cattistock Foxhounds with two colleagues, we watched as the hunt went onto Hardington Moor, a nature reserve managed by English Nature... we were horrified to see the hounds looking to pick up the scent of a fox, followed by a huntsman on horseback... Helen Weeks, West Coker Hill, West Coker. (letter)

Western Daily Press 4.1.07 PENSIONER FIGHTS OFF WILD BOAR WITH DOG LEAD - Feisty grandmother Rosemary Hamilton-Meikle was recovering yesterday after fending off three wild boar - with a dog lead.Mrs Hamilton-Meikle, 80, was walking her dog Bosun in woodland when the four-year-old dachshund darted into undergrowth.... Experts believe the boars are from several packs which have been set free from two local farms by animals rights campaigners.... (story)
Guardian 4.1.07 Woman, 80, saves pet dog from wild boar on Dartmoor - Steven Morris - An 80-year-old woman fought off three wild boar as they tried to savage her dachshund during a new year walk on Dartmoor. Rosemary Hamilton-Meikle told yesterday how she used her dog's lead to frighten two of the wild pigs away and hit the third on the snout with it.... In the past year animal activists have released two lots of wild boar from farms in Devon and many of the animals are still at large. On New Year's Day, the same day as Mrs Hamilton-Meikle's encounter, a man and his two dogs were confronted by the animals on Dartmoor.... (story)
Tavistock Times Gazette 4.1.07 Wild boar charges - A WILD boar charged at a man walking his two dogs in the Buckland Monachorum area last Monday. The man was walking near Long Ash Garden Centre when he came face to face with the wild beast, believed to be from one of the herds which escaped from a farm in Exmoor last year.... (story)
Western Morning News 3.1.07 Bad for boar - THE folly of releasing wild boar from their enclosures into the countryside is underlined once more today, with further reports that the animals have been threatening to attack rural walkers and their dogs... The so-called animal rights campaigners who let them go have done nothing for the welfare of the boar. The animals could hardly have been better cared for in their large enclosures.... (story)
Plymouth Evening Herald 2.1.07 WILD BOAR CHARGES AT MAN'S PET DOGS - A dog walker came face to face with an aggressive wild boar - thought to have been roaming the moors for nine months - which lunged at his two dogs, writes Carl Eve... It was thought at least 11 boars were roaming wild across the area and had drifted southwards after animal rights activists released around 150 boars from two farms.... (story)
Western Morning News 2.1.07 WILD BOAR CHARGES AT DOG WALKER - A wild boar charged at a man out walking his dogs yesterday. The dangerous beast is believed to be from one of the herds set free from one of the region's wild boar farms.... In November, animal activists released a herd of wild boar in Holsworthy, West Devon. Another 100 were released from Alan Dedames' Woodland Wild Boar Farm, near South Molton in December 2005.... (story)
Times 2.1.07 Warning to walkers after dog owner menaced by wild boar - DARTMOOR Walkers have been told to beware of wild boar after a dog owner was menaced by an escaped animal... A number of local people have spotted the animals, which are thought to be breeding after escaping or being released from farms.... The first boar were spotted in the area just hours after 100 of them were freed by animal rights extremists at land belonging to Allan Dedames, a farmer, in East Anstey on Exmoor... (story)
Scotsman 2.1.07 Wild boar attacks man out walking his dogs - POLICE yesterday issued an alert after a wild boar confronted a dog walker and his two pets on Dartmoor.... (story)

Ulster Herald 4.1.07 Go vegetarian for the New Year - Kelly Slade, Animal Aid, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1AW (letter)
Belfast Telegraph 30.12.06 Veggies are fit and lean - KELLY SLADE Animal Aid, Tonbridge, Kent (letter)
Peterborough Evening Telegraph 27.12.06 Letter: Turn over a new leaf, go veggie - New year is the perfect time to make a fresh start and to take steps towards a fitter, healthier, happier you. And there's no better way of doing it than by going veggie... Ring Animal Aid's hotline... Kelly Slade, Campaigns officer (letter)
Scunthorpe Telegraph 26.12.06 VEGGIE LIFE CAN BE HEALTHIER - After the lavish excesses of Christmas, you are probably considering making some new year's resolutions. The new year is the perfect time to make a fresh start and to take steps towards a fitter, healthier, happier you.There's no better way of doing it than by going veggie.... Kelly Slade, Campaigns Officer, Animal Aid, Bradford Street, Tonbridge, Kent. (letter)

Western Daily Press 4.1.07 ROGER'S BEING IRRESPONSIBLE - Roger Evans seems determined to show the worst side of rural people. I refer to his latest sentimental view of rural life in West Country Life.He is irresponsible allowing too many cats to breed, a practice of many farmers and landowners which can cause not only suffering and often a painfully slow death from diseases/illnesses but the spread of FIV the feline equivalent of human HIV, plus interbreeding. Also giving the cruel-sports lobby an excuse to blame cats as one of the scapegoats for the demise of the song birds... David Thomas Hisomley Wiltshire (story)

York Press 4.1.07 Rabbit care - I WAS quite annoyed to read the recent Diary item (The Press, December 29), about the journalist's daughter whose rabbit had to be put to sleep after being terrified by a fox.... Just because she was foolish enough to leave her rabbit out overnight doesn't mean that it's all right for foxes to be mauled to death by hounds. Vanessa Grant, Woodland Chase, York. (letter)
York Press 29.12.06 Sarah snaps up a deadly fox - CAPTURED on camera by would-be journalist Sarah Spencer, this foxy character was definitely up to no good the night he visited her home in the York area. And now Sarah, 16, who is the grand-daughter of former Press chief photographer Fred Spencer, has begun to form her own views on where she stands in the great fox-hunting debate. She she was woken at 2am by the screeches of one of her pet rabbits, Biscuit... Sarah, whose ambition is to become a journalist, said she took Biscuit inside and tried to calm her down, while her mother protected her other rabbit, Dusky, from the "consistent and determined fox, which was finally scared away…. The family took Biscuit to a vet, who said she had to be put down because the fox had caused her to go into deep shock… And she asked: "Is this one of the results of the ban on fox hunting?" (story)


Post & Times 3.1.07 HUNT CAPTURES LARGE CROWDS - Hunt enthusiasts have renewed calls for the ban on the chasing and killing of foxes to be scrapped after hundreds of people turned out for a Boxing Day meet at Cauldon Low.The event, organised by the Staffordshire Moorlands Hunt, saw 25 riders of all ages with a pack of 19 hounds following a specially-laid trail at Dale Farm, in Rue Hill.... (story)
The Sentinel 27.12.06 SUPPORTERS VOW TO FIGHT FOX HUNT BAN - Hunt supporters have vowed to carry on with the fight to repeal the ban that was introduced two years ago preventing hounds chasing and killing foxes.Several hundred supporters yesterday turned out in force for the traditional Boxing Day meet by the Staffordshire Moorlands Hunt.... (story)
The Sentinel 22.12.06 HUNT READY TO GO AHEAD - A Traditional Boxing Day hunt is set to go ahead as usual almost two years after the Government imposed a ban on chasing foxes.The Staffordshire Moorlands Hunt will gather at Dale Farm, Rue Hill, Cauldon Lowe, near Leek at about 11am on Boxing Day.... (story)

Ilkley Gazette 3.1.07 Hunting dream comes true despite nightmare By Annette McIntyre - Five years ago Daniel Murphy was a dynamic student with a bright future ahead of him. But his life could so easily have been left in tatters after an accident which meant his leg had to be amputated... Despite months of hospital treatment he was determined to continue with his degree and has gone on to pursue a career in hunting, refusing to allow his life to be ruined by his injury. Today he is a kennelman and whip for the Hurworth Hunt His courage and determination have been recognised by The Field Magazine in its Young Champion of the Countryside 2006 awards... He went to university to study agriculture but says: "As soon as I got there it was spelt out to me that there was no future in livestock farming in this country." But the college - Imperial College at Wye - had a pack of beagles attached to it and although not from a hunting background, he became involved in that…. (story)

Aberdeen Press & Journal 3.1.07 FOXHOUNDS HAVE FIRST OUTING OF YEAR - Scotland's most northerly pack of foxhounds had their first outing of the year in Aberdeenshire yesterday. Kincardineshire Hunt met at Monymusk and attracted more than 200 followers, with around 50 on horseback... (story)

Northwich Chronicle 3.1.07 Hunting highs and lows - HUNDREDS of supporters turned out for the annual Boxing Day meetings in Mid Cheshire in a show of defiance against laws banning hunting.... Several hundred people watched the Cheshire Forest Hunt ride out from Lach Dennis and Joint Master of the Sandiway-based Cheshire Hunt, Richard Thomas, said more than 2,000 people gathered in Tarporley High Street to see 80 riders set off.... (story)
Middlewich, Winsford and Northwich Guardians 3.1.07 Supporters turn out for Cheshire’s hunts By Emma Cameron - THE laws banning hunting did little to deter crowds from gathering for the annual Boxing Day hunt. The Cheshire Forest Hunt rode out as usual from Lach Dennis and joint master Richard de Prez said he was happy with the level of support shown.... Protesters turned out at many hunts nationwide but the North West Hunt Saboteurs were not present at the Lach Dennis meet or at the Cheshire Hunt meet at Tarporley. A spokesman for the organisation said: "We were asked to go elsewhere on Boxing Day so there weren't any of us actually there…. (story)

Carmarthen Journal 3.1.07 HUNT PACKS A PUNCH FOR NEW YEAR'S DAY - Hundreds of people gathered in Carmarthen to watch the New Year's Day hunt meet. Around 400 people came to Nott Square to watch the 30 horses and 15 hounds meet before following an artificial scent. Treasurer of Carmarthenshire Hunt, Rhodri Wilkins, said the support for the hunt was as strong as ever.... (story)

Cornish Guardian 3.1.07 HUGE CROWD FOLLOWS HUNT - The Boxing Day meet of the North Cornwall Hunt attracted one of the largest crowds for years, with up to 900 people enjoying the traditional scene.Around 60 horses attended the hunt.... (story)

Cornish Guardian 3.1.07 TRADITIONAL HUNT MEETS ARE STILL MIRED IN CONTROVERSY - They were, of course, as mired in controversy as any pre-ban gathering.Indeed, at one meet I was told about, the local vicar got himself in hot water by doing the traditional thing and blessing the huntsfolk. Which struck me as unfortunate - why shouldn't the vicar offer a blessing to the people and their animals? He wasn't condoning their purpose - and anyway, their purpose now is not to kill with the use of hounds.... A shame, though, that in Camelford nothing was done about dealing with traffic through the town while the meet took place. It was quite hazardous - and the town centre isn't the easiest of places to navigate at the best of times. Fortunately, there was no damage to riders, spectators, horses or hounds.... (story)

Exeter Express & Echo 3.1.07 NO ACTION IS TAKEN OVER BREAKING BAN - Chris Gale is living in cloud cuckoo land if he thinks the next election will be determined by support for the Hunting Act... An outright ban never had majority support when compared with other options.... I recently chased three young stags off my land with my four dogs. It's absurd for this to be illegal because it is not cruel. Giles Bradshaw, Rose Ash, South Molton (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 3.1.07 DRAG-HUNTS SEEM MUCH MORE POPULAR - Chris Gale, of the Labour Animal Welfare Society... asks a good question: "If hunts are attracting more people to legal drag hunting..., why are Countryside Alliance members and their Tory friends so keen to see the (hunting ban) law repealed?"Journalist Alice Klein, Echo December 27, reported East Devon Hunt fieldmaster John Oram-Evenett as saying: "We hope with a change of Government we can put an end to this ridiculous and shortsighted (hunting ban) law." The Echo journalist also reported Maggie Chenery as saying: "Now it is a trail hunt and foxes are out of the equation, people don't have to worry about animal welfare and can enjoy it, and the more people we have, the more fun it is."… Am I and Chris Gale bonkers in failing to understand why the Countryside Alliance are desperate to see the Hunting Act repealed?... John Phelps, Argyll Road, Exeter
I agree with Chris Gale, Points of view, December 28, why can't the hunters be content with just drag hunting? Judi Hewitt, Rhyl, North Wales (letters)
Exeter Express & Echo 28.12.06 PLACE YOUR VOTE IN DEBATE ON HUNTING - The Hunting Act stops nobody dressing up and enjoying a day's ride in the countryside with hounds.... Come the next election the public, the overwhelming majority of whom abhor bloodsports, will know where to place their votes. Chris Gale, National executive member Labour Animal Welfare Society (letter)

Bolton Evening News 3.1.07 Hunters enjoy their sport without cruelty - CONGRATULATIONS to Holcombe Hunt for not killing a single fox since the ban two years ago. You have proved the law is working.... Mrs Jackie Webb, Sandford Close, Harwood (story)

Aberdeen Press & Journal 3.1.07 Slaughter of red kites - RSPB assertions that nearly half of Scotland's red kite population have been illegally killed are absolute rubbish designed to swell their bank balance and extend their misguided influence! Analysis of the RSPB's own figures shows that in reality less than 4% of Scotland's red kite population have been illegally killed; a huge improvement on previous years brought about by the painstaking education of members by organisations like the Scottish Gamekeepers Association (SGA).... Yvonne Hail, The Bungalow, Kirk Lane, Blairdrummond, Stirling. (story)

Forres Gazette 3.1.07 Snares are morally unacceptable - May I express my sincere condolences to the Powney family after the appalling death of their pet cat, Scully, in a snare near her home ("Gazette", December 20). If nothing else, this tragedy emphasises the wanton cruelty and abuse perpetrated in setting traps which are indiscriminate, vicious in their strangling effect and unnecessary, when problem foxes and rabbits can be effectively shot…. KATHLEEN WATSON, Rushton Drive, Bramhall, Stockport, Cheshire (story)

Western Daily Press 3.1.07 EU IS ALLOWED TOO MUCH POWER - We don't half make some silly mistakes.... in our democracy, the Parliamentary majority vote always wins, irrespective of the wishes of us, whom it should represent. That is how the Reach directive was passed in the European Parliament at its second reading on December 13... most affected will be small businesses; and countless unnecessary tests on live animals will be the norm.... Miriam Brown Weston-super-Mare Somerset (letter)

Independent 3.1.07 Hunger for meat kills ecosystems - I deplore the insinuation in the "reformed vegetarian" article (Extra, 27 December) that avoidance of meat is based upon naivety and lack of knowledge of nature "in the raw". Some of the world's best ecological scientists are vegetarian…. If it takes 20 dumb animals to make one fur coat, it takes the death of whole ecosystems to produce meat. I for one do not think the rewards are worth that price. ADELE BRAND, CATERHAM, SURREY (letter)


Gloucester Citizen 2.1.07 HUNT SETS OFF ON A NEW YEAR - More than 800 people came to watch the New Year's Day meet of the Beaufort Hunt, which saw 65 riders joining in.People aged from seven to 70 congregated at the railway car park in Tetbury at 10.45am... (story)
Western Daily Press 2.1.07 LAW IS HUNTERS' QUARRY BY TRISTAN CORK T.CORK@BEPP.CO.UK - Hunters across the West began 2007 more confident than ever that their hated ban would be repealed - but admitted it would be unlikely under a Labour Government. Riders and followers met for the traditional New Year's Day meet - the third biggest of most hunts' seasons - buoyed by the news that the Hunting Act had won a Radio 4 poll for the piece of legislation most ripe for scrapping.... At Tetbury, in Gloucestershire, hundreds gathered in a town-centre car park to applaud the Beaufort Hunt on their annual meet in the town... (story)

Western Daily Press 2.1.07 HUNTSMEN HAVE THE LAST LAUGH - The anti-hunting lobby rubbed their hands with glee and congratulated each other warmly when (after goodness knows how many attempts) they managed to get an Act of Parliament (of sorts) through Westminster.But the defiant hunt masters and other officials were boasting at the weekend that they had enjoyed their best Boxing Day ever.... You would have thought that our well-rewarded Parliamentary drafters would have been able to put together a piece of simple legislation which would be able to achieve its purpose, however, controversial. But it is such a shoddy piece of work that the hunting fraternity not only defy it but blow raspberries at it as well. It makes you weep.... (story)

Gloucestershire Echo 2.1.07 SHOW OF DEFIANCE FROM HUNT - Hunt supporters demanded that the Government reverse the Hunting Act when they turned out in force for a New Year's Day meet.In a show of defiance at legislation brought in a year ago, 500 people flocked to the Heythrop Hunt in Stow-on-the-Wold.... (story)

Peterborough Evening Telegraph 2.1.07 Riders pack out Fitzwilliam Hunt as support grows despite new rules - DOZENS of riders met yesterday for The Fitzwilliam Hunt, which is now going stronger than ever. Despite a ban on hunting with dogs which came into force more than two years ago, riders packed out the hunt in Wansford, near Peterborough, for their traditional New Year's Day meet…. (story)
2.1.07 New Year's hunt brings in its own legal eagle By Kirsty_Nicolson - A GOLDEN eagle will today accompany horseriders and their hounds in their bid to catch foxes legally. The Fitzwilliam Hunt is now stronger than ever, despite the ban on hunting with dogs which came into force more than two years ago. As riders met in Wansford, near Peterborough, for their traditional New Year’s Day hunt, it was revealed the magnificent bird of prey had added an interesting dynamic to the sport... (story)

York Press 2.1.07 Derwent Hunt enjoys big turn out By Haydn Lewis - THERE was a bumper turn out for the traditional New Year's Day hunt at Thornton-le-Dale... About 40 riders and more than 30 hounds took part in the Derwent Hunt meet at The Hall, Thornton-le-Dale, yesterday. Last year, about 30 riders took part.... (story)

Tivyside Advertiser 2.1.07 Huntsman David Barber leads the Tivyside Hunt as it leaves Newcastle Emlyn on New Year’s Day. (photo on website probably for only a week)

Essex Evening Gazette 2.1.07 Maldon: Tally-ho all By Gill Mariner - The Essex pro-hunting lobby carried the day as hundreds gathered to greet the traditional post-Christmas meet. Cheers and clapping by a large crowd in Maldon High Street welcomed the Essex Farmers and Union Hunt as it clattered into the Swan Hotel yard for the traditional stirrup cup.... (story)

Carlisle News & Star 2.1.07 ‘Cruelty-free hunting’ is more popular – MP By Keir Mudie - CARLISLE Labour MP Eric Martlew has claimed that the ban on foxhunting is the reason for increased numbers attending hunts over New Year and Christmas.... The New Year’s Day hunt, at Aikton, and the Cumberland Farmers Boxing Day hunt at Welton – the second since the ban came into force in February 2005 – were both well attended... Other packs out hunting on New Year’s Day included Blencathra, Ullswater, Bewcastle and Cumberland.... Tom Fell, regional director of the Countryside Alliance, said: "The reason that more people turned out is because they were showing support for the hunts.... (story)

Leicester Mercury 2.1.07 'HUNT BAN MUST NOT BE REPEALED' - Animal rights campaigners say scrapping a hunting ban would be "like stepping back to the Dark Ages"… Hunt organisers say record numbers of people have been turning up for traditional post-Christmas hunts in Leicestershire in spite of the act…. Yesterday, hunt supporters in Melton shrugged off the ban to enjoy their traditional New Year outing… After the Boxing Day Cottesmore Hunt, attended by crowds of more than 600, secretary Clare Bell said: "We're now getting more people coming to show their support than we had before the law was changed."… (story)

Beverley Guardian 2.1.07 Hunt draws crowds - THE traditional Boxing Day meet of the Holderness Hunt drew record crowds to Beverley Westwood, despite the hunting ban... (story)

Mid Devon Gazette 2.1.07 'WE KEEP TO THE LAW' SAY HUNTSMEN IN ASBO THREAT - TIM HALL - Hunt supporters once again turned out in large numbers in several locations in Mid Devon for the traditional Boxing Day meet, in another mass show of defiance against the hunting ban.On the same day, the League Against Cruel Sports announced that it had formed a prosecution unit to help enforce the 2004 Hunting Act, which makes the hunting with dogs of all wild mammals an offence. The Silverton Foxhounds, whose country includes rural Crediton, Yeoford, Dunsford, Tedburn St Mary, Upton Hellions and Shobrooke, met at Thorverton. ... The Tiverton Foxhounds gathered in Tiverton market place before riding through the streets to an applauding crowd out into country west of the town, and the Dulverton Farmers' Hunt met at Dulverton.... (story)

Bristol Evening Post 2.1.07 HORSES SAVED ME FROM LIFE OF CRIME - Huntsman Curtis Thompson said horses saved him from a possible prison term after he gave up the city life in Bristol and switched to the countryside.Curtis grew up in Barton Hill, where he said he used to hang around with "a bad crowd". But he shared a passion for horses with his mother and at 24 joined a hunt in Hampshire as Britain's youngest professional huntsman. Now he is back in the West Country as kennel huntsman with the Avon Vale Hunt in Wiltshire…. (story)

Scotsman 2.1.07 Joys of the hunt - It is reassuring to note that foxhunting is now more popular than it was before the introduction of the ban on using hounds to kill foxes... some will recognise that drag hunting represents a realistic alternative to traditional hunting; others who continue to hunt live foxes will be reassured by the fact that the fox, once caught, will be dispatched humanely by gunshot, rather than ripped apart by hounds. JAMES BOYLE, Eastwoodmains Road, Clarkston, Glasgow (letter)

Northern Echo 2.1.07 HUNT MEET - WHAT a Meet. What a treat. I turned out to the Zetland Hunt as it set off from Aldbrough St John, near Darlington, on Boxing Day.... I have been following hunts all over England for 70 years, but have never before seen so many participants and followers.... Name and address supplied. (letter)

Western Mail 2.1.07 Tail-docking is back on 2007 WAG agenda - Mark Hinge, Western Mail - LOOKING back over 2006, I have written about some very serious issues that affect rural Wales. These concerning post offices, police services, road accidents, train services, disability, countryside education, emergency communications, rural organisations, 4x4s, recycling, carbon, upland management, game shooting and last, but not least, tail docking of working dogs.... It is worthy to note that in Wales, shooting supports 2,600 jobs and profits £73m/GVA to the rural economy and it manages 500,000 hectares of rural Wales.... Just before Christmas, a government consultation document hit my desk. Tail- docking is back on the devolved agenda. The whole devolved package, I believe, will be based on what I term rural-reality. In other words, the fullest understanding of the issues. But more so, keeping to the fore that without that "rural-reality" a dire future does exist for those working animals which have not been docked…. (story)

Western Morning News 2.1.07 CONCERN OVER REVIVAL OF OTTERS - Otters, which were once in danger of being wiped out, have recovered in such numbers that some anglers fear they pose a threat to fish stocks.Particular concern has been caused by incidents where otters have struck at fishing lakes stocked with specimen fish... (story)

Exeter Express & Echo 2.1.07 NO MORE EAGLES IN THE HIGH STREET - I have been following correspondence culminating in the letter from Tony Parsons, Eagle seemed to enjoy its captivity, Points of view, December 28.I think it was very wrong to bring an eagle into Exeter High Street and believe such conduct will be unlawful after April 6, 2007, when the Animal Welfare Act 2006 comes into operation... John Phelps, Argyll Road, Exeter (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 28.12.06 EAGLE SEEMED TO ENJOY ITS CAPTIVITY - I read with interest the letter Dangerous to bring eagle to city street, Points of view, December 21.Here R A J Bickford stated that the "fearsome predator... would not have thought twice about attacking a child or even an adult"…. When I saw it, it was in no fear or a state of distress. It was a marvellous bird enjoying its state of captivity. Tony Parsons, Haymans Close, Cullompton (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 21.12.06 DANGEROUS TO BRING EAGLE TO CITY STREET - I was horrified to read Express & Echo, December 7 that someone brought a live tethered golden eagle into the High Street in Exeter.This is totally unacceptable and reckless, as this bird is a fearsome predator. If it had broken the tether, it would not have thought twice about attacking a child or even an adult, and any family pets, should they have been around at the time... R A J Bickford, Lebanon Close, Exeter (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 13.12.06 GOLDEN EAGLE WAS A MAGNIFICENT SIGHT - I write after reading the letter by Sharon Howe, Points of view, December 7, complaining about Exeter City Council allowing a golden eagle to be displayed in High Street. I might add that this bird was also on duty at the Westpoint Christmas fair.It was a magnificent bird and I felt privileged to have admired it as such close quarter... Tony Parsons, Haymans Close, Cullompton (letter)
Exeter Express & Echo 13.12.06 CITY HIGH STREET NO PLACE FOR AN EAGLE - While collecting for the Dr Hadwen Trust for Humane Research in Exeter on Saturday, my friends and I were very disturbed to see a man using a live golden eagle to promote falconry "experiences".Though the bird was not being subjected to obvious cruelty, Exeter High Street is clearly a highly unsuitable and unnatural environment for such a creature…. Sharon Howe, Fortescue Road, Sidmouth (letter)

Oxford Mail 2.1.07 Protect our wildlife - I wonder how the animal activists, who unleashed mink into the English countryside, feel knowing the devastating consequences their actions have had on our rich and diverse wildlife... SHIRLEY NELDER Dene Road Headington Oxford (story)

Western Daily Press 2.1.07 SLAUGHTER WAY NOT INHUMANE - Shechita is the Jewish religious humane method of animal slaughter for food. Robert Readman (Your Say, December 22) is wrong to claim that it is "cruel and barbaric".Following consultation last year, the British Government determined that shechita fulfils the requirements of animal welfare and humane slaughter as recognised by leading scientific and veterinary authorities….. David Russell Shechita UK London (letter)
Western Daily Press 22.12.06 PUPILS NO CHOICE IN HALAL DECISION - If there is anyone left who doubts that our culture is under siege and in danger of disappearing altogether due to the activities of the politically correct brigade, perhaps the news that a number of schools in the Reading area are now serving halal meat (and apparently have been doing so secretly for several years) to all pupils will make them wake up... For far too long we have bent over backwards to accommodate the practices of other religions - even when those practices have been anathema to our culture. The way in which animals are slaughtered to comply with Muslim and Jewish religious tradition is cruel, barbaric and condemned by the RSPCA.... Robert Readman Bournemouth Dorset (letter)

Western Morning News 2.1.07 IF IN DOUBT, DON'T BUY ACCESSORIES MADE OF FUR - Like me, many readers may have seen and been alarmed by the media coverage about the apparent increase in fur sales in the UK.... Respect for Animals would ask everyone if they are in any doubt as to whether something is made from fake or real fur just not to buy it.... Mandy Carter Respect for Animals, Nottingham (letter)


Irish Independent 1.1.07 No British need apply as we take to the hunt JEROME REILLY and NIAMH HORAN - THE evocative sound of the hunting horn and the baying of hounds echoed across the countryside last week - proof of a new renaissance in traditional country pursuits spurred by Ireland's wealthy new elite. Traditional Irish hunts were so packed with new recruits to the hunting brigade that English visitors were told to stay away. There was simply no room for another high class hunter galloping across the countryside in pursuit of Renard. After years of steady decline, hunting for fox or stag has been adopted by a new generation… Pat Coyle, Huntsman at the Ward Union Stag Hunt Meeting at Bellewstown Racecourse, said that overseasvisitors were asked to stay away from the meeting because of the huge number of local participants…. Meanwhile in Duleek, Patricia Murtagh, former Secretary of Fingal Harriers, said the number of protesters seems to be declining, as many supporters followed in their cars to watch the action…. However, hunters in Waterford didn't enjoy such a protest-free day, as members of the Association of Hunt Saboteurs (AOHS), who use tricks such as scent dulling to disrupt activities, descended upon the annual hunt in Tramore, in an effort to highlight animal rights as an issue in the 2007 general election…. (story)

Gloucester Citizen 1.1.07 DRAG HUNTERS ENJOY WET AND WINDY DAY OUT - Hunting wild mammals with dogs may have been banned but the ` Hunt still rode out at the weekend.Riders were greeted by a grey and murky Saturday morning but the weather did not affect the crowds of supporters who turned out to watch as more than 50 horses and riders took to the countryside to enjoy a legal drag hunt.... (story)

Scotsman 1.1.07 Country pursuits - I enjoyed your report (27 December) on the joys of fox hunting. I was, however, struck by the similarities between the country folk you described and my own social group. I too had a few pals round on Boxing Day, sharing whisky and cake and bit of craic... none of us felt the urge to chase any other creatures, or delight in their violent and bloody death... DAVID DUNCAN, Eildon Crescent, Melrose (letter)

Western Daily Press 1.1.07 NO TURNING BACK - The latest mantra from the Countryside Alliance refers to the Hunting Act and goes like this: "The case for repeal is unanswerable."… Let's remember that the upshot of this Act is simply to tell the hunts that they can no longer set their dogs on to another living animal for so-called "sport". Who wants to undo that? Gill Purser , Gloucestershire (letter)

Leicester Mercury 1.1.07 HUNTS VICTIM OF POLITICAL CORRECTNESS - The support for the hunt just shows how out of touch any Government is with voters... Jayne Warner, Harborough. (letter)

Yorkshire Post 1.1.07 Hunting ban should stay From: Rachel Maister, Priest Lane, Ripon. I DON'T understand why pages are devoted in the Yorkshire Post to pictures of hunting and the assertion that, since a great many people turn out to watch hunting, then the ban should be lifted.... (letter)

Worcester News 1.1.07 Don’t stop building homes for a fox - With regard to your article concerning "Foxes halt building programme" (Worcester News, December 18), has councillor Mike Leyland lost all his marbles?... This decision to hold up vital housing for a pest is a disgrace…. CJ SALISBURY, Worcester. (letter)

Times 1.1.07 Hungry otters battling with anglers to net the best catch - LEWIS SMITH, ENVIRONMENT REPORTER - Cute furry faces, a comical natural inquisitiveness and lead roles in literature have assured the European river otter a place as one of Britain’s favourite creatures... But now their resurgence has brought them back into conflict with man. Having seen hundreds of thousands of pounds’ worth of prize fish gobbled up by otters, anglers are demanding that stocks of specimen fish, the heavyweights of each sport fish species, should be protected.... (story)

Guardian 1.1.07 In praise of... vegetarianism - What with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's real-meat mincemeat and Nigella Lawson's goose fat, Christmas 2006 seemed at times to be one of the meatiest... It is also true that there are ethical dilemmas about many non-meat foods in the modern world - like the fruit and vegetables flown in from distant continents at the expense of the ozone layer. For all that, vegetarianism confronts ethical questions that a lot of us prefer to ignore. And, on a day when new year's resolutions are being set, it is likely that more people than ever will decide that this seasonal turkey will have been their last. (story)

Western Daily Press 1.1.07 KEEPING ALIVE THE CAMPAIGN TO SAVE MORE MOON BEARS... Amazing Western Daily Press readers last year funded the rescue of five bears from China's cruel bile farms and the construction of a new den at the Animals Asia bear sanctuary. Now, as Ruth Wood reports, some of our readers are sponsoring their own bears...(story)