Campaigners on the streets of Bath call for an end to fox hunting on National Trust land

Campaigners on the streets of Bath call for an end to fox hunting on National Trust land

Press release

Saturday, October 9 2021

Campaigners from the League Against Cruel Sports took to the streets of Bath today [Saturday] to call on the National Trust to stop licensing ‘trail’ hunting on its land.

Volunteers and staff from the leading national animal welfare charity, including one in a fox costume, gathered on Stall Street, outside the Roman Baths, to urge the public to take action and sign up to its National Trust campaign.

Nick Weston, head of campaigns at the League Against Cruel Sports said: “It was lovely to speak with families and individuals from around Somerset today, including many National Trust members, and the League fox brought a smile to many people’s faces.

“However, many people were shocked that not only does fox hunting still take place in the countryside but that the National Trust allows this cruel blood sport to take place on its land.”

The day of action in Bath was one of a series of League actions taking place across the country ahead of the National Trust’s AGM on October 30, when there will be a vote in which members will get the chance to call for a permanent ban on the licensing of trail hunting.

Nick added: “It is evident that tragically fox hunting is still taking place across England and Wales despite the ban, so we are calling on the National Trust to stop licensing ‘trail’ hunts on its land once and for all.”

Fox hunts have come under the spotlight recently after senior figures within the hunting lobby were caught seeming to admit that ‘trail’ hunting, one of the excuses they use, is a ‘smokescreen’ for the chasing and killing of animals.

The National Trust to its credit paused the licensing of trail hunting after this, but it is now time to have the ban made permanent.

A fox hunting ban outlawed fox hunting in England and Wales in 2005 but in the 2019/20 season, the League Against Cruel Sports compiled figures revealing 485 separate eye-witness accounts of suspected illegal hunting.

Through much of 2020, hunting activities were disrupted by Covid-19 lockdown restrictions. However the League still gathered figures showing 300 suspected cases of suspected illegal hunting during the cub hunting season in the autumn, although this is not something that is licensed by the National Trust.

Nick Weston added: “The overwhelming majority of the public oppose fox hunting and it’s time to consign this barbaric activity to the history books for good.”

Ends

Notes to editors
Enclosed is a link to our web page on the realities of what trail hunting really is.

For more information or interview requests please contact the League Against Cruel Sports Press Office on 01483 524250 (24hrs) or email pressoffice@league.org.uk

The League Against Cruel Sports is Britain's leading charity that works to stop animals being persecuted, abused and killed for sport. The League was instrumental in helping bring about the landmark Hunting Act 2004 and the Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Act 2021. We carry out investigations to expose law-breaking and cruelty to animals and campaign for stronger animal protection laws and penalties. We work to change attitudes and behaviour through education and manage sanctuaries to protect wildlife. Find out more about our work at www.league.org.uk. Registered charity in England and Wales (no.1095234) and Scotland (no.SC045533).

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