Who we are and the history of the League

We stand on the side of animals and protect them from being harmed or killed in the name of ‘Sport’. Millions of animals each year are neglected, distressed, suffer cruelty or are killed by cruel ‘sports’. We redefine what is acceptable and were instrumental in helping bring about the landmark Hunting Act 2004. We are driven by compassion and empowered by knowledge. We aim to inspire change, as we know that most of the public share our view that harming and killing animals for ‘sport’ is cruel. We manage sanctuaries to protect wildlife, carry out investigations to expose law-breaking and cruelty to animals, and campaign for stronger animal protection laws and penalties.

A lot of animal cruelty takes place out of sight and often the only way to expose these activities is to go undercover. Our trained team of professional Investigators, which includes former police officers, work continuously to ensure we have effective animal protection laws that are properly enforced. Determined to make sure those who break the law are brought to justice, our professional Investigators expose animal cruelty by gathering the vital surveillance needed to bring those responsible to justice. Our unique and confidential Animal Crimewatch hotline allows anyone witnessing illegal activity in connection with cruel sports to report it to us.

Often animal cruelty takes place because people don’t recognise it for what it is. Hunting with dogs was perceived for a long time as a civilised pursuit, until organisations like us educated the public to the true nature of what goes on.

We continue to educate the public and policy makers through high profile work in the media and expert behind-the-scenes lobbying in Parliament. We also protect animals through our successful campaigning work, by creating awareness of the cruelty inflicted on animals through ‘sport’. More people are raising their voices leading to changes in the law.

We directly protect animals on our sanctuaries  and other land – covering around 3,000 acres - where we own the ‘sporting rights’, meaning that no-one is allowed to hunt or shoot animals on this land. Our sanctuaries have come under attack from those who wish to harm animals, but our team protects our borders, particularly during the stag hunting season.

A safe haven for animals, our sanctuaries are home to a huge array of thriving wildlife.

Discover how to get involved

How we are changing attitudes

When the Hunting Act 2004 was introduced, just one Conservative MP voted for it; now we know that more than 50 Conservative MPs would stand up against legalising hunting. Most of the public in the UK also share our view – more than eight out of ten support a ban on hunting with dogs.

Despite this, cruel ‘sports’ is still happening. This is not a small problem - the number of animals involved in the UK is in the millions every year. But we promise to continue to work hard until cruel ‘sports’ becomes a thing of the past as the history of the charity demonstrates.

‘If the League Against Cruel Sports didn’t exist, I’d have started it myself.’

- Bill Oddie, OBE, President of the League Against Cruel Sports

History of the charity


On the 6th April 2019, the League introduced a revised Memorandum and Articles of Association. To ensure that the Byelaws were complimentary to the new governing documents, these were also revised.

You can see these documents by clicking on the links below.

League Special Resolution 2019 & Memorandum and Article

League Ordinary Byelaws 2019