November 2013

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(*)- added since last update


Horse & Hound 30.11.13 Farewell to Jumbo’s breeder and Ledbury master, Archie Smith-Maxwell - The breeder one of the highest-ranking event sires of all time died peacefully at home last week (22 November) at the age of 86. Archie Smith-Maxwell bred the Irish draught-thoroughbred stallion Jumbo, who evented to advanced level with Andrew Nicholson… He was also a master of the Ledbury for a decade and was involved in the breeding of the hounds for more than 30 years…. (story)

Western Daily Press 30.11.13 County MPs call for further bTB research - Three Gloucestershire MPs complained to police earlier this month that anti-cull activists were 'terrorising' farmers, and called for a police crackdown on their activities. Now, Forest of Dean MP Mark Harper, Tewkesbury's Laurence Robertson and Cotswold MP Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, have called for proper analysis of the two culls in the Forest and in west Somerset…. (story)

Western Daily Press 30.11.13 Government kills off the badger cull By Tristan Cork - Ministers defended the badger cull last night and said it could still continue next year, despite ordering the guns to fall silent three weeks early. The badger cull in west Gloucestershire was unceremoniously abandoned yesterday, because marksmen were failing to find and kill enough badgers, despite an eight-week extension…. (story)

Western Daily Press 30.11.13 'It must be time to abandon the concept' of cull says Brian May - Dorset-based Queen guitarist and animal rights activist Brian May, one of the most vocal celebrities against the cull, has welcomed news that the project is to be stopped…. (story)

Western Daily Press 30.11.13 Trial was worth it, says minister - Farming Minister George Eustice has made a staunch defence of the cull – insisting it had been "worthwhile"' and praising marksmen who "worked so hard in the face of provocation"… (story)


Western Morning News 29.11.13 In my opinion: My research proved hunting more humane than shooting By Edmund Marriage - The WMN is to be congratulated for presenting both sides of the arguments in the long running hunting debate (Nov 16). However, both Tim Bonner and Noel Sweeney miss the key point of assessing comparative suffering in both hunting and shooting, which overwhelmingly resolves the debate in favour of hunting methods using simple arithmetic…. Noel Sweeney focuses on the three legal cases lost by the Countryside Alliance and the Union of Country Sports Workers. Yet what was at stake was the human right to hunt, and not the human right to use the most humane methods. The latter using the welfare equation evidence, would have overturned the verdicts in all three cases… (story)
Western Morning News 16.11.13 Hunting: The cruelty question debated by both sides - It’s the big rural issue that just won’t go away. Questions of cruelty in hunting, hotly denied by the sport’s followers but relied upon by those campaigning to keep the ban, have emerged again as the argument over a possible relaxation of the Hunting Act ebb and flow. Here, both sides debate the issue. Lord Burns was clear - hunting is not 'cruel' by Tim Bonner Head of Campaigns at the Countryside Alliance…. We cannot make immoral acts legal By Noel Sweeney, Barrister specialising in animal law… (story)

Grimsby Telegraph 29.11.13 Calls for action after fox kills and eats 7-year-old girl's pet rabbit in Grimsby - A 7-YEAR-OLD girl has been left distraught after her pet rabbit was eaten by a fox. The rabbit was found with its head bitten off in Park Street, Grimsby, after the fox had managed to climb over the wall and get into the pet's locked cage. Mum Amanda De Ste Croix, 30, said her husband made the horrific discovery after hearing a noise outside… (story)

Western Morning News 29.11.13 Better rural broadband best way to boost Britain, survey suggests - Improving broadband provision in the countryside would make the single biggest boost to the economy, a survey suggests. Polling carried out for the Countryside Alliance found four in five (80%) of all adults agreed that rolling out high-speed broadband across the whole of the UK would have a positive impact on the economy, rising to 85% among rural dwellers…. (story)

Essex Chronicle 29.11.13 Campaigners call for ban on 'inhumane' badger culling ban in Essex By Megan Tatum - ACTIVISTS have called on Essex authorities to forbid the culling of badgers on council-owned land, ahead of the anticipated roll-out of the scheme next year…. "As anybody involved in badgers knows culling them is not the answer, it's crazy to spend all that money on it with the policing involved etc," said Renee Hockley-Byam, chairman of the North East Essex Badger Group… (story)

Telegraph 29.11.13 Badger cull halted due to low kill rates - Marksmen have failed to meet the targets for shooting badgers, despite the trial culls being extended By Rosa Silverman - The Government's controversial badger cull policy is being called off after trial schemes failed to kill enough of the animals. Shooting is being halted in Gloucestershire three weeks before schedule after it became clear even a reduced target would not be met… (story)
Independent 29.11.13 Badger cull in Gloucestershire ends with marksmen missing targets - TOM BAWDEN - The beleaguered Gloucestershire badger cull has been called off after marksmen fell so far below their target that it was deemed pointless to carry on…. (story)
Western Morning News 29.11.13 Gloucestershire badger cull halted three weeks early - The controversial badger cull in Gloucestershire to halt the spread of TB in cows is being ended tomorrow – three weeks earlier than planned. Natural England will today announce the cull licence is to be revoked and will end at noon tomorrow…. (story)

Western Morning News 29.11.13 Badger march biggest wildlife demo of 2013 - Protesters against the badger cull are to gather in Bristol tomorrow in what organisers are billing as "the biggest wildlife protection demonstration in Europe" this year…. (story)

Western Morning News 29.11.13 Wild cattle cull considered in bovine TB fight By Graeme Demianyk - Environment Secretary Owen Paterson has said culling wild cattle is to be considered as part of measures to control the spread of bovine tuberculosis…. (story)
Western Morning News 29.11.13 WMN opinion: Bovine TB must be fought on the farm and in the wild - There will be understandable concern among livestock farmers at the announcement yesterday from Environment Secretary Owen Paterson about further restrictions on the way they manage their herds as part of the ongoing battle against bovine TB…. It has been a tactic of some of those opposed to the badger cull to – entirely unfairly – cast livestock farmers and their representatives as the villains in this crisis, overseeing the slaughter of innocent wild animals while suffering little themselves. Nothing could be further from the truth… (story)
Western Daily Press 29.11.13 Farmers are bearing their fair share of the burden in the battle against bovine TB - There will be understandable concern among livestock farmers at the announcement yesterday from Environment Secretary Owen Paterson about further restrictions on the way they manage their herds as part of the ongoing battle against bovine TB… (story)

Western Daily Press 29.11.13 Cotswold MP apologises for poor service over badger cull concerns By Tristan Cork - A West MP has apologised to farmers in his constituency after being accused of bias in favour of the badger cull. David and Gill Purser, farmers in the Cotswolds who are against the badger cull, wrote to their local MP, Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, to express concern that farmers who oppose the badger cull were "not being fairly represented"…. Last night Mr Clifton Brown apologised to the Pursers, explained that he did originally reply to their letter, but acknowledged that the service they had received was "unacceptable"…. (story)

Pendle Express 29.11.13 Best way to help animals is to go veggie - Fiona Pereira Animal Aid (letter)
Shields Gazette 27.11.13 Don’t start eating horses - Fiona Pereira, Animal Aid. (letter)
Belfast Telegraph 19.11.13 Butchering isn't horse welfare - FIONA PEREIRA Animal Aid (letter)
Scotsman 18.11.13 Animal practice - I WAS amused and confused by the proposal by Fiona Pereira of Animal Aid (Letters, 16 November) suggesting that “the best way to help animals is to adopt an animal-free diet”. What does she think will happen to all those animals that are living but then would then not be necessary as part of the food chain?... David Gerrard, Edinburgh (letter)
Scotsman 16.11.13 Leave horses be - RECENT comments from Anne, the Princess Royal, that we should consider a trade in horsemeat have sparked heated debate… The best way to help animals is to adopt an animal-free diet. Fiona Pereira Animal Aid Tonbridge, Kent (letter)


BBC News Online 28.11.13 Gloucestershire badger cull: More than 100 traps damaged - More than 100 badger capture cages have been stolen or damaged in the Gloucestershire cull zone, police said. In response to the "spike", more officers have been deployed to areas where damage has been reported. Anti-cull campaigners have accused the police of standing guard over traps in direct conflict of their impartiality. But Gloucestershire Police denies the claim, saying the patrol increase is an attempt to prevent offences, such as cages being damaged, being committed…. (story)

Western Daily Press 28.11.13 Vehicle firm does badger cull U-turn By Tristan Cork - The shooters carrying out the extended badger cull in Gloucestershire have had to return the vehicles hired by the Government for their work after the hire firm withdrew them in the face of a boycott campaign. Opponents of the badger cull in the Forest of Dean last night claimed a minor victory after just a couple of days campaigning against the Exeter-based Thrifty Vehicle Hire saw a U-turn by the firm… (story)

Western Morning News 28.11.13 RIGHT TO REPLY: 'Wildly inaccurate' badger cull claims questioned By Dominic Dyer, Care for the Wild International - As a leading figure in the anti-badger cull campaign, I feel I must respond to the opinion piece you published from Chris Rundle on the 28 November which contains unsubstantiated, and in one case wildly inaccurate statements…. (story)

South West Farmer 28.11.13 Councils' petition over badger culls - A petition to protect badgers from culling which was launched on the Cornwall Council website earlier this year is now being used as part of a national petitioning campaign called ‘Operation Badger’ which extends from Cumbria to Kent and from Northumberland to Cornwall… (story)

Bristol Post 28.11.13 Badger cull has little to do with bovine TB - I REPLY to "Badger's being culled in cattle free farms" (Bristol Post November 19) As regards to the fact that only 43 per cent of the land involved in the Gloucestershire badger cull was cattle or dairy farms. It is obvious to all that the cull zone is seriously lacking cattle…. I believe this cull has very little to do with bovine TB, this big con is more about feeding the commercial industrialised pheasant shoots. Janet Hall Cirencester (letter)

Swindon Advertiser 28.11.13 Badger problem - I read in the Farmers’ Guardian that North Wiltshire Tory MP and hunting supporter James Gray stated that, “one of my farmers has lost his entire herd on three separate occasions. “He is reported to be driving a bus at the moment and going through terrible stress.” I only hope that this new bus driving farmer is not on the school run as is he really in a fit state to be diving a bus with children onboard? … Farmers have allowed the bovine TB problem to spread into the wildlife and now they seek to destroy the victims of their messy industry and all at the tax payers’ expense. Graham Forsyth, Fairway Rise, Chard, Somerset (letter)


Paisley Daily Express 27.11.13 Tampering with animal traps 'wrong' -Animal rights activists have been urged not to interfere with snares or traps, following complaints from landowners. Damage to devices set legally by keepers and wildlife managers by those who assume they are illegal and inhumane is on the increase, according to Scottish Land and Estates… (story)

Fishing Magic 27.11.13 Canoe Trespass Must be Tackled By Angling Trust - A dossier provides new evidence that the British Canoe Union (BCU) has potentially misled its members, and the public, about the law relating to navigation on rivers… The Angling Trust believes this has contributed to a widespread upsurge in unlawful canoeing and trespass throughout England and Wales impacting on the legitimate rights of millions of anglers… The dossier shows that the canoeing governing bodies have also ordered their staff not to sign voluntary access agreements (VAAs) with angling clubs and other owners of river rights, unless they offer unlimited access to rivers… Rachel Evans, Director for Wales for the Countryside Alliance said: “Anglers and landowners have come to the table with offerings of local VAAs but there has been very little take up from canoe clubs and indeed individuals…. (story)

Cornish Guardian 27.11.13 Mobile phone companies not doing enough to provide good signal – MP - THE MP for north Cornwall has criticised mobile phone companies for offering customers poor levels of signal strength in the county. Dan Rogerson said that "variable reception" levels in north Cornwall were unfair to customers who paid the same price for their phone tariffs despite receiving a poorer service than others elsewhere in the UK…. Pressure group the Countryside Alliance is also campaigning for better rural coverage and is collecting signal strength data from across the country through the RootMetrics smartphone app… (story)

Western Morning News 27.11.13 Insight into badger cull protesters - What has been remarkable about the badger culling is the large number of untaxed and unlicensed vehicles police have pulled over while monitoring the activities of the anti-cull protestors. A fact which is somewhat at odds with the notion that the demonstrators are all from solid, comfortable middle- class backgrounds and is more aligned to the theory that all-purpose agitators are using the cull as an excuse to have a poke at (a) the police and (b) farmers…. (story)

Western Morning News 27.11.13 Brian May badger cull challenge is refused by court By Phil Goodwin - An application by rock guitarist Brian May for an urgent judicial review to try to stop the killing in the second extended pilot scheme has failed… On Tuesday the Queen star's Save Me organisation launched a legal challenge at the High Court, calling for an immediate halt to the killing…. (story)
BBC News Online 27.11.13 Brian May's urgent legal challenge to Gloucestershire badger cull refused - An application by rock guitarist Brian May for an urgent judicial review to try to stop the Gloucestershire badger cull has failed…. (story)
Western Daily Press 26.11.13 Brian May’s Save Me organisation file for High Court action to stop badger cull - Documents for a High Court legal action to bring an immediate halt to the controversial badger cull extension in Gloucestershire have been filed today by former Queen guitarist Brian May’s Save Me organisation. Represented by leading Human Rights QC, John Cooper and Solicitor David Wells of Wells Burcombe Solicitors, Save Me has filed an ‘exceptionally urgent’ High Court Judicial Review Claim calling for an immediate halt to the culling presently operating under extended licence in Gloucestershire… (story)

Sunderland Echo 27.11.13 Protect the wildlife - WHEN will we see effective action taken against the worldwide poaching of wildlife on the continents of Asia and Africa?... Les May, Gateshead (letter)


Western Morning News 26.11.13 Anti-hunt charity starts a national campaign - A leading anti-hunt charity has launched a national awareness campaign to highlight what it claims are "threats" to the hunting ban. The League Against Cruel Sports 'No Joke' campaign, featuring Phoenix Nights comedian Dave Spikey, is aimed at reaching five million people via adverts run across video-sharing website YouTube and in more than 400 cinemas up and down the country… (story)
Western Morning News 25.11.13 VIDEO: Phoenix Nights star fronts new anti-hunt campaign - A leading anti-hunt charity has today launched a national awareness campaign to highlight what it claims are “threats” to the hunting ban. The League Against Cruel Sports ‘No Joke’ campaign, featuring Phoenix Nights comedian Dave Spikey, is aimed at reaching five million people via adverts run across video-sharing website YouTube and in more than 400 cinemas up and down the country… (story)

Western Daily Press 26.11.13 BIll Oddie lambasts 'heavy-handed' Gloucestershire badger cull police By Tristan Cork - Wildlife TV presenter and environmentalist Bill Oddie criticised the police in Gloucestershire yesterday, claiming the force is "heavy handed" in arresting "totally innocent" people protesting against the badger cull… (story)


Horse & Hound 25.11.13 Hopes for a free vote on repealing the Hunting Act are fading - Government is unlikely to happen during this Parliament. George Eustice, the new environment minister and Tory MP for Camborne and Redruth in Cornwall, said that with only 18 months to go until the general election, Parliamentary time was “increasingly precious”. He told the Western Morning News: “There’s a danger you could spend quite a lot of time discussing something, when it was clear from the outset that there wasn’t a consensus in Parliament to have a repeal… (story)
Telegraph 14.11.13 Hunting ban 'unlikely to be overturned before 2015' - George Eustice, a Conservative environment minister, says that MPs are reluctant to use ‘precious’ time before the next election to debate the hunting ban By Steven Swinford, Senior Political Correspondent - The hunting ban is unlikely to be repealed before 2015 because there is a "reluctance" among MPs to use "increasingly precious" parliamentary time for a debate on the issue. George Eustice, a Conservative environment minister, suggested that winning a Commons vote on repealing the act is unlikely to be a "realistic prospect" in this Parliament…. (story)
Western Daily Press 14.11.13 Time running out for vote on hunting By Tristan Cork - A call from the pro-hunt lobby for the Government to honour its promise to hold a vote on repealing the Hunting Act appeared to be in vain last night after the new Environment Minister said it was probably too late…. (story)
Western Morning News Eustice: the Tories are the champions of countryside - Westcountry MP George Eustice tells London Editor Graeme Demianyk about his new ministerial role in Defra and why the Government is on the side of farmers and rural communities… (story)
Western Morning News WMN opinion: Tories risk more rural votes with climbdown on hunting - Party leaders know that what they say before a General Election will be remembered once they get into office. It is one of the reasons so many political interviews are so guarded and boring – no-one wants to promise something they subsequently find they have to deliver. But on one rather specialist issue, the repeal of the Hunting Act 2004, which effectively outlawed hunting with a pack of hounds, Mr Cameron was as unequivocal as politicians ever are… George Eustice, in his first full interview since taking office, signals to the Western Morning News today there will not be a vote before the next election. If that is not a broken promise, then it is difficult to know what is… (story)
Western Morning News 12.11.13 No vote on hunting says minister By GDemianyk - The Government is set to break its promise to let MPs vote on repealing the hunting ban. George Eustice, the new Environment Minister, has told the Western Morning News parliamentary time is “increasingly precious” so there would be “reluctance” to put a vote to the Commons if it did not reverse the Hunting Act… (story)

Gloucestershire Echo 25.11.13 Mobile phone users urged to make voices heard to improve coverage in Gloucestershire By jrmaidment - Campaigners and politicians are enlisting the help of the general public to try and improve mobile phone coverage across the south west of England. The region’s MEP Giles Chichester is urging people to get involved in The Countryside Alliance’s campaign to improve reception in rural areas…. (story)

Gloucester Citizen 25.11.13 My night on the badger cull, by Martin Surl, Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner - Gloucestershire Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl spent a night on the badger cull. Here is his first person report. The other night I went out on the badger cull. Just myself and a member of my team. We didn’t tell the police, we didn’t tell any of the opposition groups and we certainly didn’t alert the media because the last time I raised the cull in public I was accused by an MP of ‘publicity seeking… (story)

Leicester Mercury 25.11.13 'Animal research is vital in saving lives' - Professor Mike Barer, of the University of Leicester's College of Medicine, has written to our letters page defending the use of animals in medical research. A recent report about animals being killed in universities in the name of research focused on the numbers killed. But the reason why animals are used may have been lost in the detail and in the implication that our primary purpose is to kill. I wish to emphasise that my colleagues and I see use of animals in research as a personally challenging balance of moralities; the balance of human death and suffering against highly regulated experiments in which the animals are exposed to the minimum stress achievable in order to attain a valid result.... (story)


BBC News Online 24.11.13 Poor phone signal in Cornwall leaves people with 'raw deal' - Dan Rogerson, MP for north Cornwall, said that despite paying the same price as in other areas, "variable reception" has left residents with a raw deal. He is asking people to test and record the strength of mobile phone signals to help campaign for better reception…. The Countryside Alliance is also campaigning for better rural coverage and is collecting data from across the country, using the RootMetrics smartphone app… (story)
Cornish Guardian/West Briton 24.11.13 Poor mobile phone service in Cornwall is attacked by MP - The MP for north Cornwall has criticised phone companies for offering customers poor levels of signal strength in the county. Dan Rogerson said that “variable reception” levels in north Cornwall are unfair to customers who pay the same price for their phone tariffs despite receiving a poorer service than others across the UK… (story)

24.11.13 Darlington campaigner against foie gras presents 100,000 name petition to the government -A CAMPAIGNER has travelled from the North-East to Downing Street to present a petition calling for a ban on foie gras. Fiona Munro, from Darlington, collected more than 100,000 signatures on a petition to ban production of the meat which involves force feeding ducks and geese to enlarge their liver. Mrs Munro was joined by members of animal rights groups including Viva!, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) and Animal Aid as part of an international day of action against foie gras… (story)

Northern Echo 17.11.13 Darlington woman gathers 100,000 signatures against the production of foie gras By Vicki Henderson - A CAMPAIGNER fighting against the import of foie gras to shops and restaurants in the UK has gathered more than 100,000 signatures on a petition against the practice. Fiona Munro, from Darlington, will travel to London this week to present the petition to the Government at 10 Downing Street and the French Embassy as part of an international day of protest against the food product… (story)


Telegraph 23.11.13 Pheasant pests - Sir Barney White-Spunner, the head of the Countryside Alliance, is struggling to get his message on foxhunting across to politicians. “I was talking to an MP the other day about hunting,”… He said: 'I don’t think I’m going to support you on hunting, but shooting’s different. I know we have to have shooting; there’s so many pheasants around, they’ve just got to be controlled.'”… (story)

Western Morning News 23.11.13 Badger cull 'terrorists' must feel the full force of law, say Gloucestershire MPs - By Tristan Cork - The police must enforce the law and stop anti-badger cull campaigners terrorising farmers inside the Gloucestershire cull zone, three local MPs have demanded. The Tory MPs said they were deeply concerned that the police were not "properly dealing" with allegations of criminal behaviour in the wake of the badger cull in the Forest of Dean and north west Gloucestershire, which ended recently… (story)
BBC News Online 22.11.13 Badger cull police must tackle 'harassment' allegations, say MPs - MPs have asked police to address allegations they are failing to deal with criminal behaviour by anti-badger cull campaigners in Gloucestershire… Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, Mark Harper and Laurence Robertson have written to Chief Constable Suzette Davenport following concerns from constituents… (story)
Gloucester Citizen 21.11.13 Gloucestershire MPs seek urgent action from Police on badger cull - Three Gloucestershire MPs have called on Gloucestershire Constabulary to take action to ensure farmers are properly protected, and the law is enforced, to prevent harassment and unlawful behaviour by some of those opposed to the badger cull. Geoffrey Clifton-Brown (The Cotswolds), Mark Harper (Forest of Dean) and Laurence Robertson (Tewkesbury), three of Gloucestershire’s rural MPs, have today written to the Chief Constable of Gloucestershire Constabulary, Suzette Davenport, relating to concerns from their constituents that the police are not properly dealing with allegations of criminal behaviour…. (story)


Western Daily Press 22.11.13 Who does support this Hunting Act? - The Hunting Act allows for up to two dogs to flush wild mammals from cover after which they must be shot as soon as possible. The League Against Cruel Sports has recently responded to proposals to relax the two-dog limit by claiming that there is no need to shoot foxes. Surely it is clear from this that the league does not in fact support the legislation whose intent is to allow foxes to be shot…. Giles Bradshaw Rose Ash, Devon (letter)

Shooting Times 22.11.13 Minimum age for shooting in NI to fall By Kate Gatacre - Debate continues over whether to reduce the minimum shooting age to 10 or 12 years in Northern Ireland - The minimum age for shooting shotguns and airguns under supervision in Northern Ireland (NI) is to be lowered. The NI Justice Minister David Ford has agreed the move in principle, but debate continues over whether the minimum age should be 12 or 10 years… (story)

Telegraph 22.11.13 Countryside Alliance launches scheme to get tandoori pheasant curry on the menu - Sir Barney White Spunner, head of the Countryside Alliance, is encouraging Indian restaurants to incorporate game into their menus as part of their Game to Eat scheme By Katy Balls - Sir Barney White Spunner has come up with a spicy new scheme to help get the nation eating game - The Old Etonian head of the Countryside Alliance has launched Game to Eat, to encourage Indian restaurants to incorporate game into their menus. “We all have to make a major effort to get game eaten,” he said at the Purdey Game and Conservation Awards in Mayfair. “We’ve got a wonderful scheme going at the moment, to get Indian restaurants using game.”.. (story)
Evening Standard 22.11.13 How about a venison vindaloo, then? - At last night’s annual Purdey Awards for Game and Conservation held in Mayfair, Sir Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman of the Countryside Alliance, revealed his latest campaign in London. “It’s called Game To Eat and we’re encouraging Indian restaurants across the capital to use game on their menus,”… (story)

Kent & Sussex Courier 22.11.13 Tunbridge Wells restaurants told to take foie gras off menus - By Mary Harris - AN ANIMAL rights campaigner has written to an upmarket restaurant in Tunbridge Wells to urge it to remove controversial foie gras from its menu. John Porter approached Thackeray's after a national newspaper investigated how the delicacy, made from the liver of ducks, is produced… (story)

Western Daily Press 22.11.13 Report raises concern over zoo standards By Tristan Cork - Less than one in six British zoos meets minimum animal welfare standards, West researchers claimed last night, and the Government's own inspectors need to toughen up their inspection regimes. Scientists from the University of Bristol joined with the Born Free Foundation to look at the reports completed by Government inspectors at 136 zoos, and found only 22 of them were assessed as meeting all the animal welfare standards required by law at consecutive inspections…. (story)


Western Daily Press 21.11.13 MPs will vote against Hunting Act repeal, says League Against Cruel Sports - Repeal of the Hunting Act seems a long way off, as a detailed list of MPs' voting intentions published by the League Against Cruel Sports showed the scale of the challenge faced by hunt supporters…. (story)

Western Morning News 21.11.13 Time for a little co-operation – and honesty – for wildlife's sake - It is amazing how many of the membership organisations, charities and pressure groups that claim to look after the countryside, define themselves by what they are against. So the RSPCA is opposed to many country sports, the RSPB regularly criticises gamekeepers and shooting estates and the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust campaigns hard for the abolition of lead shot… So it is refreshing to read a view, expressed by Charles Nodder, countryside writer and leading light in the National Gamekeepers Organisation, suggesting country organisations of all kinds could and should work together for the benefit of the wildlife all of them purport to want to protect…. (story)

Gloucestershire Gazette 2111.13 Reports of cages stolen and tracking devices being attached to vehicles in badger cull zone - EXTRA officers have been deployed as part of Operation Themis after reports of cages being stolen and tracking devices being attached to contractor vehicles in the cull zone… (story)

Western Morning News 21.11.13 Protesters mingle with shoppers - A GROUP of around ten badger cull protesters joined hundreds of eager first-day shoppers at Sainsbury's in Penzance last Wednesday. They were there to protest about the stance taken by the supermarket giant's chief executive on the issue. Some dressed as badgers while handing out leaflets about the badger culls and wildlife crime reporting cards. Spokesperson Kathryn Driscoll, from Sennen, said: "We wanted to highlight Justin King's open support of the recent badger cull in Somerset and Gloucestershire… (story)


Mirror 20.11.13 Morrissey attacks 'airhead' Kate Middleton and calls 'thickwit' sister Pippa 'sick face of modern Britain' - Pop star Morrissey has unleashed an amazing rant at the Duchess of Cambridge branding her an “airhead". And he also gives both barrels to her hunting-loving sister Pippa calling her a “thickwit” as well as attacking PM David Cameron…. In a near 2,000-word blog entitled The World Won’t Listen - a reference to a Smiths album - he attacks US TV presenter Melissa Bachman for posing over the carcass of a shot lion… (story)

Shooting Times 20.11.13 Changes to gun licensing process By Kate Gatacre - New gun licensing forms to be introduced on 1 December - From 1 December, there will be a single form to cover both shotgun and firearms certificate applications in England, Wales and Scotland to help simplify the application process. … The news was welcomed by fieldsports organisations…. The Countryside Alliance also welcomed the move… (story)

COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE AWARDS 2013 (November coverage)
The Sentinel 20.11.13 Butcher's is in line for a Rural Oscar - A BUTCHER'S shop has been nominated for an award following a £500,000 investment in the site. Oxtail & Trotter opened its doors in Cheshire Street, Audlem, just over a year ago…. Now the shop has been nominated by its customers for a Rural Oscar in a competition run by the Countryside Alliance… (story)
Matlock Mercury 14.11.13 Nomination for shop that keeps things local - A newly–opened Peak District shop is already proving that keeping it local pays off after being nominated for an award. White’s Spar Calver, in Calver, has been nominated for a countryside Alliance Award. The new farm shop–style store was opened by Edward White in August this year…. (story)

Leicester Mercury 20.11.13 'Experiments on animals are cruel, archaic and shame our universities' - Dr Katy Taylor, head of science at animal protection organisation BUAV, argues that experiments on animals are cruel, archaic and unreliable… (story)


North Devon Journal 19.11.13 North Devon farmers warn of threat to red deer on Exmoor - FARMERS say the red deer of Exmoor are under threat from legally-licensed marksmen. They fear money is luring shooters to take out only the big stags with valuable antlers, leaving weaker specimens to breed…. One woman, who didn’t want to be named for fear of repercussions, said it can be frightening to hear shots close at hand when she’s out tending to stock on her land…. She said the situation has gone downhill since the hunting ban. “In the old days it would have been controlled by the hunt.” (story)

Western Daily Press 19.11.13 Hunting history of the South Tetcott shows the passion and stories woven in to country life - A new book traces the history of one of the West Country's oldest fox hunts. Philip Bowern gives an overview… (story)
Western Morning News 18.11.13 Three centuries of South Tetcott hunts recorded in book that's a labour of love - Anyone who hunts, shoots or tries to catch fish will tell you that the stories are almost as important as taking part in the activity itself…. It means that when a former Joint Master and keen hunting man for 40 years sits down to write and illustrate the history of just one relatively small hunt in the Westcountry, he can knock out 400 pages of a large format book and still have material left over. Maurice Thomas, Joint Master of the South Tetcott from 1989 to 2000, has recently completed his massive tome, which was launched earlier this month by local MP Geoffrey Cox…. (story)

North Devon Journal 19.11.13 YESTERYEAR: Barnstaple Hunt and Twelve Jolly dancers - HUNT: The Wrey Arms in Barnstaple was often the meeting point for the local hunt - as these two photographs show…. (story)

Keighley News 19.11.13 Appeal to improve Haworth mobile phone coverage By Miran Rahman - A Haworth-based writer and publisher has welcomed efforts to secure a proper mobile phone signal for people living in rural areas. Graham Smith, who had to contend with a poor to non-existent phone signal for six months this year, says he supports a Countryside Alliance campaign for better coverage… (story)

Kirriemuir Herald 19.11.13 Backing for bid to map real mobile reception - Local MP Mike Weir has given his backing to a national initiative to accurately map real mobile ‘phone reception rates across the UK. Mr Weir recently attended an event at the House of Commons to promote the initiative, run by the Countryside Alliance…. (story)

Northumberland Gazette 19.11.13 Welcome for pledge on mobile coverage - The Countryside Alliance has welcomed Ofcom’s five-point plan to improve mobile-phone coverage and its news that three of the four mobile providers have hit their target to cover 90 per cent of the UK population…. (story)


Ledbury Reporter 18.11.13 Alliance hits out at RSPCA over case - THE RSPCA has been accused of using the courts for “naked political campaigning” following the collapse of the prosecution case against a Ledbury huntsman… (story)
Horse & Hound 15.11.13 Case dropped against Ledbury huntsman - A case against Ledbury huntsman Will Goffe was dropped on 7 November due to lack of evidence. The prosecution brought by the RSPCA was based on evidence collected in March 2013 by the League Against Cruel Sports. This is the fourth failed RSPCA hunt prosecution this year…. (story)
Western Morning News 12.11.13 RSPCA 'can't be trusted' to act fairly on animal prosecutions - On November 7, during a hearing at Cheltenham Magistrates Court the RSPCA dropped a prosecution they had been bringing against my client Will Goffe, the Huntsman of the Ledbury On November 7, during a hearing at Cheltenham Magistrates Court the RSPCA dropped a prosecution they had been bringing against my client Will Goffe, the Huntsman of the Ledbury… (story)
Western Daily Press 12.11.13 Jamie Foster: Time to stop RSPCA prosecuting over animal cruelty - West Country solicitor Jamie Foster says that a recent case against a huntsman, dropped at the last minute, illustrates why it is time to stop the RSPCA pursuing animal cruelty prosecutions. On November 7, during a hearing at Cheltenham Magistrates' Court, the RSPCA dropped a prosecution they had been bringing against my client Will Goffe, a huntsman of the Ledbury. Under normal circumstances this may not be big news. Prosecutors do from time to time drop prosecutions. This case, however, was rather special. It was the first hunting case that the League Against Cruel Sports had invited the RSPCA to prosecute on their behalf…. In court we applied for costs against the RSPCA, on the basis that they had wasted the court's time and Mr Goffe's resources bringing a case that had never altered up to the point that they finally decided they didn't have a realistic prospect of success. The court ordered that Mr Goffe's costs were to be met from the public purse. While it is very good that Mr Goffe should not have to bear the cost of his defence, it is to be wondered whether the tax-payer should bear the burden of the RSPCA's decision to bring an extremely sub-standard case to court….(story)
Western Daily Press 8.11.13 'Naked political' act By Tristan Cork - The Countryside Alliance ramped up the pressure on the RSPCA again last night after another controversial prosecution against a West huntsman was dropped by the charity…. (story)
Telegraph 7.11.13 RSPCA accused of 'naked political campaigning' after Ledbury Hunt case collapses - RSPCA accused of 'naked political campaigning' after case against Ledbury Hunt collapses By Alice Philipson - The RSPCA has been accused of "naked political campaigning" after its latest case involving a hunt collapsed. The charity accused Will Goffe, 33, of hunting a fox with a hound while out with the Ledbury Hunt, near Malvern in Worcestershire. However, the case was dropped due to insufficient evidence. It is the fourth failed RSPCA hunt prosecution this year…. (story)
Western Daily Press 7.11.13 Video: RSPCA drop Will Goffe prosecution, huntsman from Ledbury hunt - The Countryside Alliance ramped up the pressure on the RSPCA again tonight after another controversial prosecution against a West huntsman was dropped by the charity. They claimed the RSPCA brought the case because it involved a hunt in an area linked to the Gloucestershire badger cull zone, and was ‘naked political campaigning’ from the charity… (story)
Western Daily Press 16.8.13 My successes show hunting ban works By Tristan Cork - A Somerset anti-hunt monitor has said that his work to successfully prosecute a hunt for breaking the ban on hunting with dogs shows that the controversial law is working. Paul Tillsley has spent years monitoring and filming hunts in the West – mainly the stag and fox hunts on Exmoor – with little success in the way of convictions. But when he travelled to Yorkshire to help monitors there to film a foxhunt, he captured 25 minutes of footage that proved they were openly breaking the law. Now the footage and the subsequent conviction of four members of the Middleton Foxhounds has reignited the debate about whether the Hunting with Dogs Act is still working… One of the cases the league said it is working on with the RSPCA is against Will Goffe, the huntsman from the Ledbury Hunt in Herefordshire, who has been served with a summons of private prosecution by the RSPCA. (story)

Scotsman 18.11.13 Deer stalkers told to extend culling to young by JOHN-PAUL FORD ROJAS - STALKERS who target female deer should also cull their offspring to stop youngsters dying without maternal care, according to international research carried out on a Scottish island…. Scientists from the universities of Edinburgh, Cambridge and Calgary, Alberta, studied data gathered on a population of wild red deer on the Isle of Rum... Alastair MacGugan, of Scottish Natural Heritage, said: “This echoes our best practice guidance, as trying not to leave calves orphaned is a basic tenet for those stalking deer…. (story)

Western Daily Press 18.11.13 Fewer than half cull-zone farms had cows - Fewer than half of the farms in some badger cull pilot areas had cows on them, new figures revealed today. A Freedom of Information request revealed that just 43 per cent of the land involved in Gloucestershire were cattle or dairy farms…. Jeanne Berry, spokeswoman for Gloucestershire Against Badger Shooting (GABS), said: "This latest information highlights the waste in this cull… (story)

Western Morning News 18.11.13 Farmers call on Ministers to extend badger cull to Devon & Cornwall - Farmers are calling on Ministers to extend the government’s badger cull to include the whole of Devon and Cornwall…. (story)

Ledbury Reporter 16.11.13 No action over cull suspects -NO further action has been taken against four people arrested on suspicion of theft and aggravated trespass in relation to the badger cull pilot near Ledbury. A 46-year-old woman from Evesham, a 46-year-old woman from Cheltenham, a 34-year-old woman from Gloucester and a 23-year-old man from Mansfield in Nottinghamshire were all arrested on September 10 in Redmarley and had been due to answer bail on Tuesday… (story)


Sunday Telegraph 17.11.13 The deer hunter, finishing nature’s job - On an early morning cull, William Langley finds out why some of our most enchanting wild animals need to be kept in check - The first heavy frost of the winter lay over the woodlands of northern Hampshire last week as Chris Howard, a burly ex-paratrooper, dressed in dark fatigues, loaded a high-velocity rifle into a black 4x4, and pulled away down a country lane, up a steep track and into the forest… (story)

Rye & Battle Observer 17.11.13 Countryside Alliance welcomes plan to improve mobile phone coverage - THE Countryside Alliance has welcomed OFCOM’s five point plan to improve mobile phone coverage announced last Friday (November 8)…. (story)

Independent on Sunday 17.11.13 Ingrid Newkirk: 'It's bizarre to kill animals for a sandwich' - Twenty years on, the founder of animal rights group Peta is still fighting. But about that racoon... Simon Usborne meets Ingrid Newkirk… (story)


Western Morning News 16.11.13 Conservative Blue Badgers group adds to Coalition voices against badger cull By Tristan Cork - A group of Conservative activists and MPs who are against the Government's badger cull have pledged to keep fighting any plans to extend the cull next year. With a prominent West activist among their number, the 'Blue Badger' group of Tories have already been credited – or blamed – with killing any chance of a repeal of the Hunting Act with a 'Blue Fox' organisation which supports the ban, and now the same Conservatives in Parliament and outside are taking on the badger cull issue… (story)

Western Gazette 16.11.13 Cheltenham Festival hero Holmwood Legend is retired to hunting field By David Briers - Holmwood Legend - the bargain-buy who brought trainer Patrick Rodford, rider Keiran Burke and owner Brian Derrick Cheltenham Festival glory - has run his last race. "That horse gave me the greatest moment of my racing life," said Derrick paying tribute to the chaser who has been retired to the hunting field… These days he is enjoying life with the Avon Vale Hunt at Bradford-on-Avon, Wiltshire, and Derrick says: "It's more than a good home. He looks splendid and it looks so right for him. I couldn't be more pleased - and I am sure the horse couldn't be either." (story)

Rye & Battle Observer 16.11.13 Bid to save local badgers from being culled - ANIMAL lovers are petitioning East Sussex County Council in a bid to save local badgers from the slaughter which awaits them under plans for a county-wide cull. Members of the South Downs Badger Protection Group are lobbying East Sussex County Council to kybosh and culling on council land when the controversial policy is rolled out in 2014…. (story)

Sunderland Echo 16.11.13 First North East Vegan Festival takes place at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light by Ross Robertson - HUNDREDS of vegans and vegetarians are descending on Wearside this weekend for the North East’s first vegan festival…. The event has been organised by Gareth Edwards, chairman of the Farplace Animal Rescue charity, who is expecting up to 1,000 people to attend… (story)

Western Daily Press 16.11.13 Restaurants feel campaign heat By Janet Hughes - Restaurants across the West Country have come under fire for keeping foie gras on the menu despite a national campaign to have it banned…. Now they are set to come under pressure from Bristol-based campaign group Viva! which will present MPs with a 100,000-name petition calling for a ban on Thursday… (story)


Mirror 15.11.13 "Sexist" Oxford University drinking society asked women to dress as foxes and "evade mauling" during pub crawl - The Black Cygnets Society had been warned not to organise the 'Fox Hunt' event after complaints in previous years - An Oxford University drinking society organised a pub crawl in which female students were asked to dress up as foxes and 'evade a mauling'…. (story)
Telegraph 14.11.13 Oxford University students branded 'sexist and repugnant' for spoof hunt with women dressed as foxes - Selected for invitation based on their attractiveness, the women were given obstacles to avoid or face "a mauling" from their pursuers - An Oxford University drinking club has been branded "repugnant, sexist and secretive" after organising a spoof fox hunt where men chase women dressed as foxes through the streets. The Black Cygnets drinking society organised the chase with members from St Hugh's College told to wear "hunting attire."… An emergency meeting of St Hugh's JCR student body condemned the hunt by The Black Cygnets – who are banned from college premises – and described the language on the invite as "sexually aggressive"…. (story)
Mail 14.11.13 Oxford University drinking club organised spoof fox hunt through city where male students will dress as huntsmen to chase and 'MAUL' girls dressed as vixens By SAM WEBB - When the fox hunting ban was implemented, many members of the upper classes turned to drag racing to continue to enjoy the pageantry and the thrill of the hunt. But a drinking society at Oxford University has hit upon a novel, although slightly disturbing, solution - hunting women. Members of the notorious Black Cygnets at St Hugh’s College planned to dress in traditional hunting jackets and jodhpurs and 'pursue' female students who wore suggestive fox costumes. But the group has been branded 'repugnant, sexist and secretive' and the spoof fox hunt through the city may now be sabotaged… (story)

Craven Herald & Pioneer 15.11.13 Horse race to be named after Tom Bannister - A horse race at Wetherby racecourse is to be renamed the Tom Bannister Memorial Cup, in memory of the hotelier and joint master of the Pendle Forest and Craven Hunt who died in a car accident at just 48 years old in June. Formerly the Countryside Alliance’s Northern Race for Repeal, the fundraising race will feature 12 local riders, including hunt masters and Mr Bannister’s former wife – racing over a mile…. (story)

Kent Online 15.11.13 Adam’s rural agenda - TV presenter and farmer Adam Henson is holding a special Audience With event in the county to raise funds for rural charities…. The event, which will include a raffle and charity auction, is being held to raise funds for the Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution and the Countryside Alliance Foundation… (story)

Hull Daily Mail 15.11.13 Animal testing firm B&K Universal could quit East Riding after beagle factory vote By Angus Young - THE company running a controversial animal testing centre in East Yorkshire could relocate elsewhere after being refused planning permission to redevelop the site. B&K Universal employs 40 staff at its facility in Grimston, near Aldbrough. It claimed another ten jobs would have been created at the site had councillors given the go-ahead to proposals to construct a large kennels unit to start large- scale beagle-breeding there instead of having to relying on import dogs…. (story)

Belfast Telegraph 15.11.13 Animal cruelty must be reported - THE abysmal lack of prosecutions for cruelty to animals in Northern Ireland (News, November 12) must not deter anyone who witnesses violence to animals from coming forward… BEN WILLIAMSON People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (letter)


Western Morning News 14.11.13 MP backs campaign to rid Westcountry of mobile 'not-spots' - A Westcountry MP and former Cabinet minister has backed a campaign calling for better mobile phone reception in rural areas. Liberal Democrat Nick Harvey, the former Armed Forces minister, has urged people to become telephone "detectives" by downloading software to their phones and tablet computers which can measure the strength of signals… (story)
Western Daily Press 7.11.13 Poor rural mobile coverage harms economy, warns MP By Phil Goodwin - A West Country MP and former Cabinet minister has backed a campaign calling for better mobile phone reception in rural areas. Liberal Democrat Nick Harvey, the former Armed Forces minister, has urged people to download software to their phones and tablet computers which can measure the strength of signals. He has signed up for the free RootMetrics phone "app", which can also determine which phone company provides the best service in an area… (story)

City AM 14.11.13 Plan for new garden city sought by £250,000 Lord Wolfson prize by Julian Harris - BRITAIN’S housing crisis is the latest subject to be tackled by an annual competition founded by Next chief executive Lord Wolfson. Launched this morning, the 2014 Wolfson Economics Prize is offering £250,000 to the author of the best plan to create a new garden city…. The prize has been welcomed by groups such as Shelter and Priced Out, which campaign for answers to a shortage of housing in key parts of the UK. It was also cautiously welcomed by the Countryside Alliance… (story)

Western Daily Press 14.11.13 'Badger army' to stage what could be biggest anti-cull rally yet - Protesters against the badger cull are to gather in Bristol later this month, in what organisers expect to be the biggest anti-cull rally to date…. The Bristol march takes place on College Green on November 30 and will be addressed by Dominic Dyer, a representative of Care for the Wild International, who has addressed numerous rallies around the country including that at Taunton in September…. (story)
Western Daily Press 13.11.13 Badger cull protest march announced for Bristol 'to be biggest yet' - Protesters against the badger cull are to gather in Bristol later this month, in what organisers expect to be the biggest to date…. The Bristol march takes place on College Green on November 30 and will be addressed by Dominic Dyer, a representative of Care for the Wild International, who has addressed numerous rallies around the country including that at Taunton in September.... (story)

Hull Daily Mail 14.11.13 Beagle farm plans defeated, but Grimston villagers expect B&K Universal to appeal East Riding Council decision By Angus Young - VILLAGERS battling against proposals for a new beagle-breeding facility at an East Yorkshire animal testing centre say they will fight on, despite councillors voting against the development…. (story)
Yorkshire Post 14.11.13 Plans for beagle farm rejected in ‘victory for public opinion’ - ANIMAL rights campaigners have hailed a decision to refuse plans for a new beagle farm in Yorkshire as a “victory for animals, public opinion and modern science”…. But B&K Universal, which runs the site, used for nearly half a century as an animal research facility, said the decision was putting 40 jobs at risk and they would consider moving to a “more enterprising” location… (story)
International Business Times 13.11.13 Plans to Build ‘Beagle Factory’ for Scientific Experiments Rejected - Plans to build a new "beagle factory" which would supply dogs for animal testing in Yorkshire has been rejected by the council. East Riding of Yorkshire council have thrown out the controversial plans to brred up to 2,000 beagles for scientific experiments at a site in Grimston near Aldbrough… (story)
Huffington Post 13.11.13 Beagle Farm Plans Rejected In Yorkshire Victory For Animal Rights - Plans for a "beagle farm" breeding dogs for scientific experiments have been rejected after massive public opposition. The proposal to build the facility in the village of Grimston, north Yorkshire, was turned down by East Riding councillors… (story)

Western Mail 14.11.13 The ‘wrong’ squirrels - The Red Squirrels Trust Wales claims to promote the conservation of red squirrels on Anglesey…. One of the main boasts of the Trust is that red squirrels boost tourism… It is important to remember that as part of its plan to promote the red squirrel (and aid local businesses) the Red Squirrels Trust Wales is busy killing grey squirrels… DR Vernon Coleman Barnstaple, Devon (letter)

Argus 14.11.13 Our animal cruelty sentences are too lenient - Why are sentences in this country so lenient for animal cruelty?... Sue Baumgardt, Stoneham Road, Hove (letter)


Salisbury Journal 13.11.13 Police urged to enforce balaclava removal - DEPUTY Chief Constable Andy Adams of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has written to police forces to remind them of their powers to make anti-hunt saboteurs and antibadger culling activists remove masks and to review their current policies, following concern that violent hunt saboteurs are wearing balaclavas to avoid being identified… (story)
Horse & Hound 10.11.13 Police to make hunt sabs remove masks - Police forces have been reminded of their powers to make antis remove masks, following concern that violent hunt saboteurs are wearing balaclavas to avoid being identified. Deputy Chief Constable Andy Adams of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has written to forces asking they review their current policies…. (story)

Western Daily Press 13.11.13 Short-term ambition harms countryside - Yet another PR stunt by the blood sports lobby using the misleading title of the Countryside Alliance (Daily Press November 1) because it knew that if it were honest it would not have much support, knowing that the majority of the population is against the cruel pastime of chasing, tormenting, baiting and killing our wildlife…. D Thomas By email (letter)

Western Daily Press 13.11.13 Countryside Alliance needs a name change - I was outraged by your headline "Naked political act" (Daily Press November 8). Just what does the Countryside Alliance think it is? To describe the actions of the RSPCA as a naked political act is a prime example of the pot calling the kettle black…. Alan Bond Watchet, Somerset (letter)

Western Morning News 13.11.13 Shooting's a neighbourly affair in Cornish valley - Small shoots can be a big part of the fabric of country life, as Philip Bowern reports. Rural life can be isolating. But country sports offer opportunities in the darker months of autumn and winter for community activity in which many can share…. Lanseaton Farm Shoot, tucked underneath Caradon Hill between Liskeard and St Cleer, is a perfect example of the kind of small scale shooting going on all across Devon, Cornwall, Somerset and Dorset from October to February… (story)

Eastbourne Heral 13.11.13 Pledge to improve mobile phone coverage welcomed - A plan to improve mobile phone coverage in rural areas across Sussex has been welcomed by the Countryside Alliance. The organisation has welcomed OFCOM’s five-point plan which also reveals that three of the four mobile phone service providers have now hit their target to cover 90 per cent of the UK population… (story)
Whitby Gazette 13.11.13 OFCOM pledges to increase rural mobile phone coverage - Whitby residents should be set to benefit from increased mobilephone coverage following OFCOM’s commitment to improve service in rural areas. The launch of a new five point plan by the Government office coincides with the news that three of the four mobile phone service providers have hit their target to cover 90% of the UK population…. (story)

Dundee Courier 13.11.13 Officialdom interfering in nature again - I was saddened to learn that once again an official organisation has decided it has the power to alter the course of nature. I refer to the proposed cull (another word for kill) of feral goats around Loch Lomond… Robert Finlay. 30 North Greens, Burntisland.(letter)


Wilts & Gloucestershire Standard 12.11.13 Former Royal Agricultural University student, charged with illegal hunting, escapes punishment by failing to show up for trial at Swindon Magistrates Court By Shaun Dix - A FORMER student of the Royal Agricultural University in Cirencester has evaded punishment after failing to return to Britain to face an allegation of illegal hunting. Elizabeth Jean Gilbert, 21, formerly of 6 Mount Street, Cirencester, was due at Swindon Magistrates Court on Tuesday, November 12 to face trial after being charged with hunting a wild mammal with dogs…. Despite a summons being served, Miss Gilbert’s lack of attendance in court caused the Crown Prosecution Service to withdraw the case. It is now thought that she has returned to the USA, her home country… (story)

Horse & Country 12.11.13 Hunting sees new faces in Newcomers' Week By Charlotte Ricca-Smith - The Countryside Alliance’s Newcomers’ Week (28 October – 3 November) saw around 400 people taking part in hunting for the first time…. The Royal Artillery hunt in Wiltshire ran its sixth annual newcomers’ weekend, which offered an overview of how hounds and the hunt work… The Surrey Union hunt also had an enormous show of support for its newcomers’ meet, with around 107 riders turning out ¬– three-quarters of whom were new to hunting… (story)
Western Daily Press 4.11.13 Facebook friends like drag hunting - British hunts have seen a rise in new recruits at the start of the season thanks to social media websites like Facebook, it has emerged… A spokeswoman for the Surrey Union Hunt said more than 100 people had turned up for the organisation's first meet, of whom about three-quarters were newcomers… Rachael Morley, of the Meynell and South Staffordshire Hunt, said more than 20 newcomers had turned out at their pre-meet, and Sue Simmons of the Holcombe Harriers in Lancashire reported numbers up from 20 to 60… (story)
Sunday Telegraph 3.11.13 Facebook followers take up the hunt - Hunts that are using social media like Facebook and Twitter to promote themselves are seeing an increase in the number of young people taking part By William Langley - In a bumpy field at the end of a muddy lane in a wet corner of Warwickshire yesterday was a scene that — to the unknowing eye — seemed frozen in the past… It wasn’t meant to be this way. Nine years ago, when the Labour government forced through a contentious ban on hunting with hounds, the traditional gatherings that yesterday heralded the start of the new season were supposed to disappear… “Facebook has made a huge difference,” says Mark Ferguson, secretary of the Woodland Pytchley hunt… At Tidmington, south of Shipston-on-Stour, the stalwarts of the Warkwickshire Hunt admittedly didn’t look much like a gathering of the Twitterati, but the numbers and feelgood mood spoke for themselves… (story)

Plymouth Herald 12.11.13 Don't blame foxes for poor husbandry - JAMES Barrington's letter Background needed on hunting claims, Your Say, November 5, seems to be suggesting that because some farmers dismiss all the scientific studies which show that fox predation on viable lambs is "insignificant" , we should change the law to allow sheep farmers to set packs of dogs on foxes… JOHN BRYANT Protect Our Wild Animals Kent (letter)
Plymouth Herald 5.11.13 Background needed on hunting claims - A CERTAIN amount of background information is required to properly address the points made by John Bryant regarding the proposed changes to the Hunting Act. (The Herald, October 31, 2013) Firstly, his assertion that foxes play a minor role in lamb predation has to be seen in the context of often rigorous and widespread fox control at present…. the research study to which Mr Bryant refers was rather embarrassingly undermined by the scientist who undertook the work, when he stated on national television that the results of his work could not be extrapolated to indicate a national picture… JAMES BARRINGTON Via email (letter)
Plymouth Herald 31.10.13 Poor farming kills majority of lambs - JAMES Barrington of the Countryside Alliance (letter dated October 26) is quite right to question the justification of using two dogs to flush out foxes for shooting – particularly in the name of reducing the losses of lambs… Defra has, for the last four decades, described the impact of foxes on sheep farming as 'insignificant'…. JOHN BRYANT Wildlife consultant for Protect Our Wild Animals (letter)
Western Morning News 30.10.13 Hunting research is flawed and biased - JAMES Barrington (Your Say, October 26) claims the demand for a weakening of the Hunting Act is based on a legitimate "scientific study". Really? Has it been peer reviewed? Is it unbiased? Have those conducting the research any connection to hunting? Is there filmed evidence to support the findings?... PENNY LITTLE Great Haseley, Oxfordshire (letter)

Bristol Post 12.11.13 Badger petition launched amid fears cull could be 'rolled out' to Bristol By LouisEmanuel - IT is just over a year since Queen guitarist Brian May led a rally on College Green against the planned badger cull. Now the issue is rearing its fluffy tail again in Bristol as campaigners launch a petition to safeguard the city’s badgers… The petition, Save Bristol's Badgers, lodged on Bristol City Council’s website, calls on the council to use is powers to stop a future cull in the area…. (story)

Gloucester Citizen 12.11.13 Presenter Chris Packham told off by BBC after tweeting about badger cull - Wildlife presenter Chris Packham has been reprimanded by the BBC after tweeting his views about the pilot badger culls in Gloucestershire and Somerset…. (story)
Mail 10.11.13 Wildlife presenter Chris Packham censured by the BBC for tweeting that those behind government's badger cull were 'brutalist thugs, liars and frauds' By HAYLEY O'KEEFFE - Wildlife presenter Chris Packham was reprimanded by the BBC for tweeting his views on the culling of badgers. Mr Packham branded government officials 'brutalist thugs, liars and frauds' in a series of tweets… BBC bosses launched an investigation into the tweets following a complaint by the Countryside Alliance which claimed they went against BBC impartiality rules. It found that Mr Packham breached a BBC voluntary code of conduct as the tweets were not politically neutral…. (story)
Independent 9.11.13 BBC's Chris Packham censured over angry bagder cull tweets - Naturalist Chris Packham has been censured by the BBC for describing those carrying out the badger cull as “brutalist thugs, liars and frauds,” in a tweet…. He was found to have breached BBC guidelines by tweeting about his views close to the start of Government trials to control the spread of tuberculosis in cattle by culling badgers in the south-west of England… (story)
Telegraph 8.11.13 Chris Packham rapped by BBC for 'intemperate' Twitter remarks about badger cull - A prominent television presenter has been censured by the BBC for branding those carrying out the badger cull “as brutalist, thugs, liars and frauds” on Twitter, the social media website. Chris Packham, who presented the AutumnWatch programmes last week, was found to have breached BBC guidelines by tweeting about his views on the eve of Government trials to control the spread of tuberculoisis in cattle by shooting badgers… (story)

Gloucester Citizen 12.11.13 Biologist Ian Redmond joins fight to save badgers - HE’S spent his life working to save great apes and elephants, but now biologist Ian Redmond is working to save Gloucestershire’s badgers. Ian Redmond of Rodborough near Stroud has joined the Wounded Badger Patrol which has been set up in response to the government’s badger cull… (story)
Gloucester Citizen 12.11.13 Gorillas in the Mist biologist Ian Redmond big interview - HE'S the man who taught film star Sigorney Weaver to grunt like a gorilla and picked parasites from the fur of a mighty silverback gorilla. Ian Redmond, 59, from Rodborough, started his career as a biologist working with the ground-breaking researcher Dian Fosey to study mountain gorillas in Rwanda…. (story)

Derby Telegraph 12.11.13 Victoria Martindale handed suspended jail sentence over gas death By CarolineJones By Martin Naylor - A LANDLORD whose tenant died from carbon monoxide poisoning has been given a suspended sentence after being convicted of failing to maintain a gas boiler. Prominent animal rights campaigner and former Derby Telegraph columnist Dr Victoria Martindale was handed a 16-month prison sentence, suspended for two years, when she appeared today at Derby Crown Court… (story)
Derby Telegraph 11.11.13 Victoria Martindale to be sentenced over gas death By Joey Severn - A LANDLORD who caused the death of one of her tenants will be sentenced tomorrow (12). Prominent animal rights campaigner and former Derby Telegraph columnist Dr Victoria Martindale will appear at Derby Crown Court for failing to maintain a faulty gas boiler that caused the death of a tenant from carbon monoxide poisoning… (story)
Derby Telegraph 3.10.13 Landlady guilty after faulty gas boiler tragedy By Martin Naylor - A LANDLADY of a house where a man died from carbon monoxide poisoning has pleaded guilty to breaching health and safety regulations. Victoria Martindale admitted seven charges alleging that she failed to maintain a gas boiler and other appliances at her property in Stanley Village… (story)
Derby Telegraph 6.6.13 Landlord charged after tenant death - A LANDLORD appeared in court yesterday charged with breaching gas safety regulations following the death of a tenant. Dr Victoria Martindale is being prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive after Stephen Newton, 51, died as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning… (story)

London SE1 12.11.13 No more sheep on London Bridge, say animal rights activists - Animal rights organisation People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has written to the new Lord Mayor of London urging her not to drive sheep across London Bridge during her year in office. PETA UK campaigns coordinator Kirsty Henderson has written to Fiona Woolf, who took office last week, urging her not to follow the example of her predecessor Roger Gifford who invited freemen of the City of London to exercise their right to drive sheep across London Bridge as a charity fundraising event…. (letter)

Western Daily Press 12.11.13 Meat products need to be in demand - After a heated discussion on the meat trade in my local, I do wonder how many people have a conscience about what they eat. There was an extremely vile article in the press on the production of foie grasse pate from France… N Vizor Malmesbury, Wiltshire (letter)


Daily Mail 11.11.13 ANDREW PIERCE: Go hunting for Tory votes? Forget it, Dave By ANDREW PIERCE - The decline of Tory grassroots support has been well documented, but you’d have thought it would at least hold up in the traditionally Conservative rural constituencies. Yet, earlier this month, the Countryside Alliance, whose vote successive Tory leaders used to be able to take for granted, produced a poll showing 13 per cent of its members will vote Ukip. And I have been shown figures which reveal the true scale of the crisis facing the Tories in rural areas…. (story)

Leicester Mercury 11.11.13 Rider crushed by horse after fall, near Melton, Leicestershire - A rider was airlifted to hospital after falling from his horse. The 69-year-old rider was taking part in a hunt at Nether Broughton, near Melton, earlier today when the accident happened…. (story)

Western Morning News 11.11.13 Country notebook By PHILIP BOWERN - Dogs are known to be intelligent creatures, some more than others. Gun dogs at work in the field show amazing intelligence at times and clearly love their work. Watching a group of spaniels covering the ground, noses down, stubby tails up and wagging, illustrates that they know just what they are about…. (story)

Dorset Echo 11.11.13 Join the campaign for better mobile phone coverage in rural areas - SICK of no mobile phone signal in rural areas? Join the campaign. The Countryside Alliance has launched the Sick of No Signal campaign to try and map out areas of rural Britain that have problems with mobile signal to make network providers aware and lobby for change… (story)

Bournemouth Echo 11.11.13 Unable to slow the TB spread - IT always struck me that those who support the badger cull usually bring forward evidence to support their arguments whilst those who oppose the badger cull (Cull of badgers a “huge sham” 30/10/13) use infantilisation and anthropomorphic representation of animals that might tug on the heart strings but never on the science strings. For a vaccine to be effective in arresting and preventing infection, you need about 95% to 99% of the population in question to be actively immune to whatever you’re vaccinating against…. MIKE FRY, Moorland Crescent, Upton, Poole (letter)

Yorkshire Post 11.11.13 Ricky Gervais enters fray over Holderness beagle farm plans - COMEDIAN Ricky Gervais has mobilised his legions of fans to sign a petition against an East Yorkshire beagle farm. Councillors are tomorrow due to discuss plans for the new facility at Grimston, in Holderness, where dogs would be bred for use in experiments. A spokeswoman for the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection said the number of signatures had almost doubled after Gervais, a long-time supporter, re-tweeted the BUAV’s call for people to sign their petition…. (story)

Sussex Express 11.11.13 Trevor ‘Talks to the Animals’ to raise money for welfare - Local well known wildlife rescuer and animal welfare campaigner Trevor Weeks MBE is hoping to make it into the charts this Christmas along with over 30 other stars and celebrities from music, stage and screen after teaming up with Debbie Curtis to record a twotrack Single called “Talk to the Animals.”… The single is in aid of Viva! which campaigns for a vegetarian/vegan world due to the conditions in which most farmed animals spend their short and miserable lives in factory farms. (story)

Northern Echo 11.11.13 Lion Hunting - ALED JONES (HAS, Nov 6) highlights the appalling practice of canned lion hunting in South Africa. Of course, there are many magnificent animals captured or bred for ‘caged’ shooting for the so-called sport or entertainment of ignorant, pathetic, and usually very wealthy, individuals. These people should be named and shamed… Julia Bowles, Sedgefield. (story)


Sunday Herald 10.11.13 Grouse moor owners driving mountain hares to the brink - Mountain hares are facing extinction in large parts of the Scottish Highlands because landowners are killing thousands of them every year in order to protect the grouse shooting industry, wildlife experts have warned… "A preventable catastrophe has befallen the mountain hare," said Dr Adam Watson, a veteran mountain ecologist. "This is a national scandal."… Roy Dennis, who founded the Highland Foundation for Wildlife, said: "Numbers are drastically down…. Alex Hogg, chairman of the Scottish Gamekeepers' Association, said that, because of the dangers of louping ill, which can infect humans, land managers had no alternative but to "suppress" the numbers of mountain hares on grouse moors… (story)

Portsmouth News 10.11.13 Coverage boost for phone reception in rural Hampshire by Kimberley Barber - RURAL areas of Hampshire are set to get a boost in mobile phone signal as Ofcom has pledged to improve coverage. The news, released as part of a five-point plan by the regulator on Thursday, was welcomed by the Countryside Alliance… (story)
ITV 9.11.13 OFCOM pledge to improve mobile coverage in rural areas - OFCOM has pledged to improve mobile phone coverage in rural areas in a move that's being welcomed by campaigners. The Countryside Alliance says the government's five point plan will improve services and so far, three of four mobile providers have hit their target of 90% of the UK population…. (story)

Hull Daily Mail 10.11.13 Inside Grimston beagle kennels: B & K Universal grants Mail exclusive access to site for animal testing dogs - B & K Universal is set to extend its site at Grimston under controversial plans. The Mail was given exclusive access to kennels where beagles are kept for medical research. James Burton reports… (story)


York Press 8.11.13 University of York society's ‘fox hunt’ bar crawl cancelled - THE University of York’s Conservative Association has cancelled its annual fox hunting-themed pub crawl due to “militant threats” from other campus societies, writes Helena Horton. The social, which was to be held on Wednesday, suggested that women should dress as foxes and men as hunters, to be “chased” around the city from bar to bar. Other students expressed anger at the theme, with Ali Ryland, chair of the Vegetarian And Vegan Society (VegSoc), threatening action against the Tories by suggesting that members turn up and protest at the event… (story)
Independent 6.11.13 York Conservative society forced to cancel its annual "fox hunting" event - Student Tories pull social event after threats - HELENA HORTON - The University of York’s Conservative association has had to cancel its controversial annual “fox hunting” event due to “militant threats” from other campus societies. The social, which was to be held this evening, would have seen women dressed as foxes, and men as hunters, to be “chased” around town from bar to bar. Students expressed anger at the theme, with Ali Ryland, the chair of Vegetarian and Vegan society suggesting that her members turn up and protest the event…. (letter)

BBC News Online 8.11.13 Essex girl wakes to find fox on her bed - An 11-year-old girl awoke in the middle of the night to find a fox asleep on her bed. Jessica Lambert, who was in her downstairs bedroom, stroked the animal before going to her parents' room to tell them about the visitor. Her father, Simon, went downstairs to find the fox cowering in the pantry of their West Mersea home in Essex…. (story)

Colchester Gazette 8.11.13 Fox creeps on to girl's bed...and she gives it a stroke - A DARING fox decided to seek out a midnight snack before snuggling up on Jessica Lambert’s bed. Jessica, 11, woke up to find the animal in her downstairs bedroom at home in West Mersea… (story)

SWLondoner 8.11.13 Campaigners gather to protest against Richmond Park deer cull By Molly Kersey - The autumn deer cull has seen protestors gathering at the gates of Richmond Park, but the Royal Parks say it is necessary in keeping deer population numbers under control. A group of around 10 protestors gathered with leaflets and placards at the Kingston gate of Richmond Park on Monday 5 November, the first night of the cull…. (story)

Daily Post 8.11.13 Judi Hewitt: Life on patrol during a badger cull - The animal welfare campaigner from North Wales goes to Gloucestershire to see first hand what goes on - IT was 9.10pm and pitch black when we heard two gunshots just ahead of us from the far side of the field. I looked up at the dark sky with its trillions of stars and thought, “it's going to be an eventful night”…. (story)

Bolton News 8.11.13 Protest over the badger cull instead - I READ with amusement Robert Aston’s strange attempt to twist my anti-badger cull letter into a rant against abortion… Meanwhile the badger cull rolls on. After an extension because not enough have been slaughtered, we hear that the killers still haven’t reached their target… David Sharples Tarbet Drive Breightmet (letter)

Hull Daily Mail 8.11.13 B&K Universal beagle farm expansion recommended for approval by East Riding Council planners By Faye Preston - ANIMAL rights activists have vowed to carry on fighting the expansion of a medical research beagle farm after it was recommended for approval. East Riding Council planners are recommending planning permission is granted for B&K Universal Ltd's plans to extend its beagle farm in Grimston…. Protestor Deborah Minns, 46, has fronted the campaign with friend Alex Irving, 56. She said: "We will continue to campaign against beagle breeding and this expansion for the sake of public health…. (story)

Western Morning News 8.11.13 Farms Minister 'minded' to roll out more badger culls - The Farming Minister has said the Government is "minded" to repeat the pilot badger culls in other areas despite the Somerset and Gloucestershire trials failing to hit their kill targets. George Eustice, the Conservative MP for Camborne, Redruth and Hayle, revealed the plan at the National Farmers' Union (NFU) tenant farmers' conference yesterday, according to Farmers Weekly…. (story)

Express 8.11.13 VIDEO: Woman who stamped and killed her neighbour's pet duck escapes with a fine - A WOMAN who was filmed drunkenly stamping and killing one of her neighbour's pet ducks has been fined just £300. By: Dion Dassanayake - Charlene Winter, 34, was caught on CCTV clambering into her neighbour's garden and attacking the helpless birds after a drinking session… Sue Baumgardt from Brighton Animal Action said: "Even when the penalties are so ludicrously light, magistrates rarely enforce them fully…. (story)
Argus 7.11.13 No jail for Littlehampton woman who killed neighbour's duck - A heartless dog owner who stamped on her Littlehampton neighbour's duck's neck and let her pet attack the defenceless bird has avoided jail. Charlene Winter has been banned from owning animals for five years… After the case Sue Baugamardt from Brighton Animal Action said: “Even when the penalties are so ludicrously light, magistrates rarely enforce them fully…. (story)

Dover Mercury 8.11.13 Animal export slogans "ill-judged and unhelpful" says Dover MP by Graham Tutthill - MP Charlie Elphicke has slammed animal rights campaigners for projecting "unhelpful" slogans onto the side of a derelict building in the town. One of the images had the words: Welcome to Dover. UK capital of the cruel live export trade”. Mr Elphicke said he was disappointed by the Compassion in World Farming “photo stunt that does Dover down”… (story)
Mirror 7.11.13 Images beamed onto the white cliffs of Dover by animal exports protesters - Dover's famous white cliffs have been used as a backdrop as protesters voiced their concerns over live animal exports. "Welcome to Dover. UK capital of the cruel live exports trade" was projected by Compassion in World Farming.... (story)
BBC News Online 7.11.13 Live exports campaigners use Dover's white cliffs - Images opposing live animal exports have been beamed on to Dover's famous white cliffs. One of the images projected by Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) said: "Welcome to Dover. UK capital of the cruel live exports trade."… (story)


International Business Times 7.11.13 Naked Belfast Model Slathered in BBQ Sauce and Served Up in Vegan Campaign By HANNAH OSBORNE - A model in Belfast has stripped off and been slathered with barbeque sauce for an animal rights campaign. Psychology student and vegan Gemma McCorry, 24, was served up as a plate of food on the streets of Belfast city centre, complete with a side salad and cutlery. The nearly naked model wore flesh coloured underwear and lay on a giant plate with the banner 'Try to Relate to Who's on Your Plate - Go Vegan'…. (story)
Redditch Standard 30.10.13 Student’s vegan protest - A FORMER Arrow Vale High School student stripped off in public to encourage people to ditch meat from their diets. Loretta Hope was covered in barbecue sauce and laid out on a giant plate beneath a banner reading ‘Try to relate to who’s on your plate - Go Vegan’. The 22-year-old wore just flesh coloured underwear for the stunt in Manchester to raise awareness ahead of World Vegan Month in November and encourage people to take PETA’s (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) 30 day pledge to go vegan…. (story)


Horse & Hound 6.11.13 Rosie Fry’s eventing blog: hunting and learning about fitness from the racehorses - I ended my last blog looking forward to the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale opening meet on my retired 3-star horse Louie (Bankon Louie). It was a lovely day with a big turnout of 140 mounted, plus a large number of foot followers and a great start to the season… (story)

Western Morning News WMN opinion: No magic bullet solution to the bovine TB crisis - After an extension of three weeks the badger cull in Somerset has accounted for an estimated 65% of the population inside the cull zone…. Owen Paterson, the Defra Secretary, remains bullish. He congratulated – as he should – the farmers and landowners for carrying out the pilot in difficult circumstances, not least in facing the attempts by anti-cull protesters to disrupt operations… A magic bullet for eradicating bovine TB in domestic cattle and wildlife clearly doesn't exist. The more prosaic lead bullet, as used by the marksmen in the pilot culls, is also turning out to be far from foolproof, it seems. (story)

Derby Telegraph 6.11.13 Campaigners call for cull to be halted after targets are missed - THE Government's badger cull is a "complete failure" and must be halted, animal rights campaigners say after trials failed again to meet targets despite being extended…. The failure to meet the targets is despite the estimates of the pre-cull badger numbers being twice revised significantly downwards, The Wildlife Trusts pointed out. Paul Wilkinson, head of living landscape at the charity which is campaigning against the cull, said: "This Government continues to ignore the scientific facts… (story)

Gloucestershire Echo 6.11.13 Jilly Cooper calls on Government to end experiments on cats and dogs - Gloucestershire author Jilly Cooper has spoken out in support of Our Best Friends, a BUAV campaign calling on the Government to end the use of dogs and cats in experiments… (story)

Southern Daily Echo 6.11.13 Join fight against cruelty - CRUELTY Free International invites readers to join our campaign for a ban on animal tested household products. Leading retail brands like Astonish, Method and Ecover have joined Cruelty Free International to request the Government make good on its pledge to introduce a ban for testing household products and their ingredients on animals…. MICHELLE THEW, Cruelty Free International. (letter)

Gloucestershire Echo 6.11.13 Cheltenham trainer says give veganism a try - Could you imagine your meals without meat? That’s not so difficult, carrot and coriander soup, or a nice salad. But what about no eggs, no milk, not even honey? That’s the challenge of world vegan week and one gym owner and personal trainer from Cheltenham has faced happily for 18 years. As soon as Dan Fivey was 18 and able to leave home he swore off eating, or even using, any animal products or by-products… (story)


Horse & Hound 5.11.13 Two South Wales hunts to merge next season - The Hunting Office has welcomed the news that two South Wales hunts are to merge — safeguarding the future of hunting in the area. At the end of this season, the Llangeinor in Glamorgan will merge with the Pentyrch and will be called the Llangeinor Pentrych hunt… (story)

Leicester Mercury 5.11.13 Block this 'cynical' bid to weaken hunt legislation - William Burton of the Countryside Alliance (First Person, November 2) naturally wants he and his bloodthirsty friends to be completely free to chase and kill defenceless wild animals with packs of dogs for their disgusting "sport''. But the proposal to allow full packs to flush foxes from cover will, in practice, go a long way to neautering an already weak Hunting Act for him… Alan Kirby, for Protect Our Wild Animals.(story)
Leicester Mercury 2.11.13 First Person: Why it makes sense to repeal Hunting Act - William Burton says police time and public money is being wasted on enforcing the hunting laws. Leicestershire has historically been the home of hunting in the British Isles. It is the county where the modern method of the chase was perfected and mastered by generations of huntsmen… The Countryside Alliance do not believe it is possible to amend or adapt a law as bad as this into any workable form. Only the repeal or replacement of the Act can stop the malicious accusations and end the waste of police time, court resources and taxpayers' money which this pointless law currently creates… William Burton, Eastern Region Director, The Countryside Alliance. (story)

Telegraph 5.11.13 Badger cull targets missed again - Pilot cull of badgers in Somerset misses target despite three-week extension and is branded a 'complete failure' by wildlife groups By Nick Collins, Science Correspondent - A pilot badger cull in Somerset has failed to meet its official target even after a three-week extension was granted, the Environment Secretary has admitted. Only 940 badgers were shot during the nine-week cull, which ended last week, amounting to 65 per cent of the estimated local badger population, against a target of 70 per cent… (story)
BBC News Online 5.11.13 Somerset badger cull fails to meet target, Defra admits - One of the badger cull pilot schemes failed to meet its target - even after a three-week extension, the government has admitted…. (story)

Western Daily Press 5.11.13 Treat bovine disease in bovine animal - We are quick to notice any animal that has a harmful effect on our property or interests… The badger is a wild animal, and as such should be treated with respect when met with, it can be very dangerous when cornered or injured… This situation was not created by the badger, but its the badger that is being made to pay the price…. Jan Curtis Braddon Farm (leter)

Oxford Times 5.11.13 Chaotic shambles - Now that the badger culls in Somerset and Gloucestershire have descended into a chaotic and bloody shambles, it would be hoped that at last the Government, led by local MP, David Cameron, would see sense and end their failed policy. Unfortunately, they seem determined to kill as many badgers as possible… Paul Hughes, Carterton (letter)

Cambridge News 5.11.13 Protest vigil held in Cambridge to mark death of 'urban terrorist' and animal rights activist Barry Horne Written byRAYMOND BROWN - Animal rights campaigners held a protest vigil in Cambridge today to mark the death of ‘urban terrorist’ and jailed arsonist Barry Horne. About 15 protesters, watched by officers from Cambridgeshire police, gathered in Downing Street today beating a drum and protesting against Cambridge University. Eddie Maile, 24, of Cambridge Animal Rights, who used a megaphone to get his message across, said: “We’ve come here today to mark 11 years since the death of Barry Horne who died as a result of a hunger strike… (story)

Newmarket Journal 5.11.13 Thanks for your support - I would like to thank local friends and family for their recent support during our Bake with Compassion event on October 27. I baked higher welfare cakes and scones at my home in Lidgate and raised £45 for Compassion in World Farming during an afternoon tea get-together… Moira Walshe The Street Lidgate (story)


York Press 4.11.13 Huntsmen and women gather for first meets of new hunting season By Megi Rychlikova - YORKSHIRE huntsmen and women joined their colleagues across the country as they held their first meets of the new hunting season. The York and Ainsty South Hunt was among about 200 who followed the hounds despite high winds and rain… (story)

Southern Daily Echo 4.11.13 Call to relax laws raises concerns over return of legalised fox hunting By Emma Streatfield - Hunting returned to the New Forest this weekend as the debate continues over its future. Members of the New Forest Hounds and their supporters took part in their annual first meeting of the hunt season in the ancient woodland…. (story)

Western Morning News 4.11.13 East Cornwall Hunt enjoys day on the moor (photos)

Western Morning News 4.11.13 Pressure mounts on attitude to rural issue - The Prime Minister has been warned not to breach the trust of countryside voters over hunting reforms at the same time he faces a rebellion over rural funding. Countryside Alliance campaigns director Tim Bonner has ratcheted up the pressure on David Cameron, warning that voters would not forget the Government's pledge to address the "flawed" Hunting Act come the next general election… (story)
Western Morning News 4.11.13 David Cameron under pressure to end unfair rural funding deal - David Cameron is under pressure to end years of under-funding for the countryside as more than 100 protest petitions demanding a fairer deal for rural communities will be presented in the Commons today…. The Countryside Alliance revealed last week that the proportion of its membership planning to vote Conservative at the next election has fallen dramatically… (story)
Western Morning News 4.11.13 Hunting Act reform 'now a matter of trust' - Many lowland hunts have held their opening meets in the last week and for the ninth season they are operating under the ludicrous restrictions of the Hunting Act…. I would not agree with all of the accompanying analysis, but as I have said before, there is a feeling across the rural community that warm words from this Government have not always been followed by clear actions…. (story)
Western Morning News 3.11.13 Prime Minister warned to act on hunting or face rural backlash - Failure to reform the Hunting Act is becoming a “matter of trust” between David Cameron and rural communities, the Countryside Alliance has warned. Campaigns director Tim Bonner has ratcheted up the pressure on the Prime Minister to relax the hunting ban with a warning not to take rural votes for granted. Mr Bonner, who writes exclusively on the issue for the Western Morning News tomorrow, repeated his call for action on Sky news today…. (story)
Smallholder 4.11.13 Countryside Alliance members dropping Tories for UKIP - An analysis of Countryside Alliance members has shown many are planning to switch their political allegiance from the Conservative Party to UKIP…. (story)

Western Morning News 4.11.13 Season starts with a bang as guns, beaters and dogs work in harmony - The cloud lifts, the threat of rain, ever present on this blustery October day, subsides and Michael Hockin, owner of the Brownstone Manor Shoot who has led guests and syndicate members out for the first shoot of the season, decides to risk it and take to the first stand without a waterproof…. (story)

Argus 4.11.13 Hundreds march through Brighton against badger culling - Animal lovers marched through Brighton yesterday in protest against badger culling. The peaceful protest, organised by the South Downs Badger Protection Group and Care for the Wild charity, saw hundreds of campaigners marching against Government plans to cull the animals to help control bovine tuberculosis…. (story)
West Sussex Gazette 29.10.13 Horsham wildlife charity organises Brighton-based badger cull protest this weekend - A peaceful protest against the government’s unpopular badger cull policy will take place in Brighton on Sunday, Nomember 3. Organised by the South Downs Badger Protection Group and Horsham-based wildlife charity Care for the Wild, the event welcomes people of all ages to take part in a walk through the town centre… (story)

Derby Telegraph 4.11.13 Don't let animals be the forgotten victims of war - AS we approach Remembrance Day, please spare a thought for the forgotten victims of war, the animals … Animal Aid launched the Purple Poppy a few years ago to remember them and, each year, interest and response to their campaign grows … Dawn Spencer Dovedale Crescent Belper (letter)

Western Mail 4.11.13 Mega-dairy unnatural - Cows on “mega-dairy” farms, such as the one that will soon be built at Powys, are in constant misery: forced to produce unnaturally and therefore uncomfortably high yields of milk… Ben Williamson People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) (letter)


Bucks Herald 3.11.13 Notes from Tiggywinkles: My past catching up with me now by Les Stocker, founder of St Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in Haddenham - I do not have the time these days to give talks about the hospital… But I could not resist this invitation to present a short talk about our work to the annual meeting of the Isle of Wight League against Cruel Sports. Not only would I be able to catch up with an old friend, Alan Knight, of International Animal Rescue but, best of all, I might encounter red squirrels… (story)

Fenland Citizen 3.11.13 Stopping the rural signal gap - Steve Barclay MP is urging Fenland residents to speak up in support of a new campaign which aims to put a stop to the ‘signal gap’ between urban and rural parts of the UK. Mr Barclay is joining the Countryside Alliance in asking mobile users to become mobile phone ‘signal detectives’ by getting involved in a new campaign which highlights the issues faced by residents in rural areas who suffer from poor signal…. (story)

Wells Journal 3.11.13 A government with blood on its hands - I DON'T know what took me so long, but I am seriously questioning the mental health of our leaders in Government…. I feel that like the badgers, those of us on benefits are also being made scapegoats for problems which are much more deeply rooted and these "solutions" being carried out are making things a whole lot worse… Katerina Coulias Glastonbury (letter)

Western Mornign News 3.11.13 Look after your animals and they will look after you By Michael Ashton… My letter does not seem to have pacified Len Short! May I first say that our farm is not a zoo but is a business that is trying to produce food for those who eat a well balanced meal with the best possible food. As a dairy farm we do our best to look after our animals to a very high standard. I am not certain why Mr Short should be against our housing our animals during the winter months or why he does not approve of our feeding our animals a good diet…. (story)

Dundee Courier 3.11.13 Bonfire night animal plea - As bonfire night approaches, we should spare a thought for the animals and birds who may be terrified by the deafening crashes and blinding flashes. For their sake Animal Aid believes fireworks should be sold only to organisers of public events and not to individuals to set them off in gardens or streets… Kate Fowler. Head of Campaigns, Animal Aid (letter)
Argus 2.11.13 Give thought to animals and birds on Bonfire Night - Kate Fowler, Animal Aid (letter)


Mail 2.11.13 Tally ho! Foxhunters meet across the country as new season gets underway - By LIZZIE PARRY - Set against a stunning autumnal backdrop hundreds of foxhunters have taken to the saddle to ride out to the blaring sound of the horns, signalling the start of the hunting season… Cutting a majestic sight through the countryside surrounding Headlum village in County Durham, the Zetland Hunt paraded through the rural lanes, drawing crowds to watch the spectacle. Following tradition, Reverend Andy Pell blessed the hounds and the riders warmed themselves with glasses of port before setting off…. Meanwhile in Appleton Roebuck, North Yorkshire, the York and Ainsty South Hunt filled the roads around the village, with hoards of riders following the leaders clad in bright red jackets… (story)

Guardian 2.11.13 Foxhunting season expected to attract hundreds of first-timers - Facebook used to recruit novices, with rural alliance estimating number of hunters up a quarter since ban on hunting with dogs - Fiona Harvey, environment correspondent - Hundreds of foxhunting novices are expected to saddle up today for the first "Tally ho" of the new hunting season – but in a departure from the traditional "blooding" on the first day's hunting, many of them have been drawn into the pack by the lure of social media. Facebook has become the huntsman's friend when it comes to recruitment… "Facebook has made a huge difference," said Mark Ferguson, of the Woodland Pytchley Hunt, in Northamptonshire. "It is so much easier, we can get to more and more people." A spokeswoman for the Surrey Union Hunt said more than 100 people had turned up for the organisation's first meet, of whom about three-quarters were newcomers… Rachael Morley, of the Meynell and South Staffordshire Hunt, said more than 20 newcomers had turned out at their pre-meet, and Sue Simmons of the Holcombe Harriers in Lancashire reported more than 60 people, up from around 20… (story)

Western Morning News 2.11.13 MP in plea to relax the ban on foxhunting to 'send clear message' By Graeme Demianyk, WMN London Editor - A Westcountry Tory MP has made a plea to relax the ban on foxhunting to "send a very clear message" the Conservatives care about the countryside. Sheryll Murray, Conservative MP for South East Cornwall, has backed calls from farmers to scrap a law prohibiting them from using more than two dogs to flush out foxes…. (story)

Western Daily Press 2.11.13 Rural Tories attack Conservative leaders 'failing the countryside' over hunting ban By TRISTAN CORK - Exasperated hunt supporters have told David Cameron that the issue of their sport has become a matter of trust between the countryside and the Government – the sternest attack yet on Westminster inactivity over promises to repeal the hated ban…. (story)
Spectator 2.11.13 David Cameron has lost the countryside - Abandoned by trendy urban Tories, the shires are in revolt — and heading for UKIP - Melissa Kite - When hunt supporters visit the office of a Tory cabinet minister these days, they like to turn up armed and dangerous. And so it was when a delegation from the Countryside Alliance arrived for a private meeting with the Environment Secretary Owen Paterson a few weeks ago, wielding an alarming new poll of their membership. Setting the dossier down in front of Mr Paterson (one of their few allies in government), they spelt out the bottom line: 13 per cent of Countryside Alliance members now intend to vote Ukip in the next general election… (story)
Western Morning News 1.11.13 'We are listening,' Tory MP tells disillusioned - By Graeme Demianyk, WMN London Editor - A Westcountry Tory MP has urged voters in rural areas to "stick with it" after it emerged that support for his party from people living in the country-side has fallen by more than a fifth under the coalition Government…. Neil Parish, Conservative MP for rural Tiverton and Honiton in Devon, and a member of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs select committee, said: "I have spent all my political life supporting the countryside and I'm not going to stop now. Stick with it. We are listening… (story)
Telegraph 1.11.13 How the countryside could lose David Cameron the 2015 general election - The Tories are doomed in 2015 without boots on the ground in marginal seats, argues Tim Bale. Quite how they conducted their poll, I’m not sure – they never got back to me. But the Countryside Alliance is claiming that around a fifth of its members have fallen out of love with the Conservatives…. The only pukka research I could find on the impact of Vote-OK goes back to the election in 2005, where it was estimated that they may have been worth just over 1 per cent on average – admittedly handy but probably not that crucial in that many contests…. (story)
Western Daily Press 1.11.13 Countryside Alliance members ditch Tories for Ukip as Conservatives 'forget rural voters' - Conservative support from people living in the countryside has fallen by more than a fifth under the Coalition – amid concerns that rural views on issues like hunting, planning and HS2 are "not being listened to"…. (story)
Telegraph 31.10.13 Why huntin’, shootin’ and fishin’ types are out for Tory blood - David Cameron is mired in the shires over NHS grants, planning and the fox By Isabel Hardman - David Cameron once made a big play of hugging huskies to appeal to voters who were wary of the Conservatives, but these days it looks as though he could do with hugging a hound instead. The hunting, shooting and fishing shire Tories he could traditionally rely on seem to be considerably less enthusiastic about the party than they were… (story)
Telegraph 31.10.13 Most rural Tories will still vote for Dave – but they could have already destroyed him By Tim Wigmore - Dave has a problem with the countryside. There's nothing new in that, but a new Countryside Alliance poll exposes how bad it is. Few people should be "natural Tories" more than Countryside Alliance folk, but now only 66 per cent say they would vote for Dave – a drop of almost 25 per cent from 2010… (story)
Telegraph 30.10.13 Conservative support has dropped by a fifth in rural areas, poll claims - Conservative support from people living in the countryside has fallen by more than a fifth under the Coalition amid concerns that rural views on issues like hunting, planning and HS2 are "not being listened to". By Steven Swinford - The Countryside Alliance said that just 66 per cent of its members are planning to vote Conservative at the next election, down from almost nine in 10 when the Tories were in opposition… (story)
Mail 31.10.13 Tories lose one in eight rural votes to Ukip: Support for the party among members of Countryside Alliance falls sharply By GERRI PEEV, POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT - The Conservatives are haemorrhaging one in eight of their strongest supporters in the shires to Ukip. An astonishing poll showed that support for the Tories had dropped by 20 per cent among the Countryside Alliance… (story)

Western Daily Press 2.11.13 Quantock stag Red provokes war of words between staghounds and League Against Cruel Sports - Meet Red, the big Quantock stag who – like the late, lamented Exmoor Emperor – is either a new folk hero in the making or just another wild red deer who will one day succumb to the traditional form of wildlife management administered by the local staghounds… Nick Gibbons, chairman of the (Quantock) staghounds, seemed unimpressed by the media fuss when he spoke to the Western Daily Press: "We finished autumn stag hunting on Thursday – and far from 'trophy hunting'… (story)
Western Morning News 2.11.13 Hunt group deny plans to take down Red, the Quantock stag By Martin Hesp - Members of a Westcountry hunt denied yesterday they were planning to target this magnificent stag – and said they were happy for him to feed on the hunt chairman's wheat field. Red, the Quantock stag, bears a resemblance to the late lamented Exmoor Emperor and has become a celebrity in his own right in the Somerset hills, since the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS) mounted an internet campaign to "save" him. But members of the Quantock Staghounds say they never had any intention of targeting Red and that he's safe as far as the hunt is concerned because they finished autumn stag-hunting on Thursday…. (story)
Western Morning News 9.10.13 Hunt group accused by welfare charity - A leading animal welfare charity has accused a hunting group of trespassing and "causing havoc" on its land, after a stag they were said to be chasing fled on to one of its sanctuaries. The League Against Cruel Sports claimed that an out-of-control hunt hound in pursuit of the stag had entered a sanctuary it owned on Monday, causing deer and other animals protected there, to scatter… (story)
Western Daily Press 9.10.13 League 'appalled' at staghound attack By Tina Rowe - The League Against Cruel Sports says the lives of deer on its sanctuary land in the Quantocks have been put at risk by an "out of control" staghound. It has accused the Quantock Staghounds of "trespassing and causing havoc" following the incident on Monday. A stag fled onto the land and a hound was seen to enter the sanctuary, causing frightened hinds to flee. The charity will be writing to the Master of the Quantock Staghounds to file a complaint. Nick Gibbons, chairman of the hunt said last night: "I was not aware of this and if any hunt officials had known they would have got the hound back as soon as possible." … (story)

Tivyside Advertiser 1.11.13 Charity lands fishy donation - A FISHING therapy charity, which helps women cope with breast cancer, has landed a donation. Casting for Recovery has been handed a £200 cheque from money raised at this summer’s Pembrokeshire Fish Week Festival. The cheque was handed over to charity member Nica Prichard by Councillor David Pugh Cabinet Member for Economy and Tourism, at County Hall this week…. “We’re very grateful for the money. Apart from the support we get from the Countryside Alliance, we are dependent on donations,” she said…. (story)

Western Daily Press 1.11.13 Badgers live a hard life under the ground - For several years I looked after three badger setts in and around the Quantock Hills… On fox hunting days, one of the setts was blocked up by some person for obvious reasons. I unblocked this many times, which was no easy task but helped the fox to escape inside the sett when being chased by the hunt… We now have a badger cull. I do not know what to make of it. Shooting them has its problems, some badgers must be wounded and die a slow death. JH Rowbrey Minehead, Somerset
Time to give other wildlife a voice - You have given enough publicity to the badger cull, and should start to campaign for other animals and birds. I read that hedgehogs will be extinct in a few years, apparently badgers roll hedgehogs on their backs and eat them…. Linda Dean Warminster, Wiltshire (letters)


Western Morning News 1.11.13 My very muddy initiation into the thrill of the chase - American Gillian Molesworth continues the story of her first-ever hunt... I know you are all agog to hear what happened next. You left 19-year-old me on my first day's hunting atop the four-year-old thoroughbred Pig, in the company of perfect strangers Guy and Hugo from the Oxford Hunt Club, and red-blooded farmer/point-to- point hopeful Martin… . By the end of the day, everyone was as muddy as I was, and several had come over to congratulate my pluck. I knew then that for the foreseeable future and when I got a job, I would spend all my holiday money going not to Florida or the Caribbean like normal people, but to cold muddy England in January for another hit of hunting… (story)
Western Morning News 25.10.13 In at the deep end at my very first hunt meet - "What am I supposed to, er, do?" I asked gingerly. I was in the back of a battered Volkswagen Golf that smelled faintly doggy, heading to a meet with the Bicester and Whaddon Chase foxhounds. Along with real ale and a West End musical, this was one of the English things I wanted to try during my exchange year at Oxford. I had never hunted before…. Read WMN Horses next Friday to hear what happened next (story)

Southern Daily Echo 1.11.13 Majority don’t want the return of fox hunting - ONCE again we have the elected MPs (Messrs Lewis and Swayne) advocating the return of fox hunting when there is no doubt the majority of the public are against the repeal of this sadistic so-called sport…. D. A. BRYANT, New Milton. (letter)

Western Daily Press 1.11.13 Not everyone has it in for our animals - Dear me! Andrew "West Country Badger Patrol Group" Williams is getting a bit paranoid – almost everyone is wicked and cruel… How many people are in your West Country Badger Patrol Group? Thousands, hundreds, fifty, ten? Or just you? JJ Boucher (letter)