The League Against Cruel Sports’ national general election roadshow calling for tougher hunting laws gathered pace over the weekend as it visited Crewe and Wolverhampton.

Shoppers and election candidates in both locations were urged to unite against hunting.

They joined Vinny the fox, the voice of the campaign, and sent hundreds of emails to their election candidates asking them to make their views on the fox hunting ban public.

The roadshows took place on the same weekend as the Conservative Party pledged to safeguard the fox hunting ban in their manifesto, the first time they have made this commitment since the ban came into force in 2005.

The League receives hundreds of reports every year that the fox hunts are still chasing and killing foxes, 14 years after the hunting ban came into force.

Chris Luffingham, Director of Campaigns of the League Against Cruel Sports, said:

“The people we spoke to in Crewe and Wolverhampton were incredibly supportive, and it backed up what we know from YouGov polling that the vast majority of the UK public are opposed to hunting.

“It was gratifying to see election candidates of all political colours coming along to find out more about what we’re asking for, or to pledge their support.

“This general election we stand united against hunting. Political parties need to commit to closing the loopholes and removing the exemptions that the fox hunts are currently exploiting, backing this up with an effective deterrent – giving courts the chance to not just fine but imprison those convicted of hunting offences.”

Candidates from the Labour Party, the Green Party, the Animal Welfare Party and the Brexit Party all stopped by the stall in Crewe and the Labour party candidate for South Staffordshire stopped by the stall in Wolverhampton.

The League’s election survey asks candidates the following questions:

  • Do you support securing the hunting ban by keeping the Hunting Act 2004 in place and opposing any weakening of the ban?
  • Do you support strengthening the Hunting Act 2004 by closing loopholes, removing exemptions and introducing custodial sentences?

The League will be publishing all responses over the coming weeks on its dedicated campaign website, https://unitedagainsthunting.co.uk/take-action/, where people can also take action themselves.

Chris added:

“We’re hoping tens of thousands of members of the public will contact general election candidates in the next few weeks to seek their views on fox hunting as the League general election campaign gathers pace, calling on all parties to secure and strengthen the Hunting Act.”

There are 191 fox hunts operating in Britain today, 14 years after the Hunting Act 2004 was enacted that outlawed the practice.

In total, hunts can go out almost 10,700 times a year – and each time a fox’s life is put at risk.

Ends

Notes to editors

All pictures should be credited to Marc Dewhurst/League Against Cruel Sports.

More information about our calls to strengthen the Hunting Act is available here.

All figures for the polling, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1,639 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 29th - 30th October 2019. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+). The YouGov polling revealed 74 per cent of respondents who expressed a view support prison sentences for illegal hunting. The results also showed 79 per cent of respondents who expressed a view think the Hunting Act should be amended to ensure foxes are not killed by hunts claiming to be trail hunting.

Separate polling commissioned by the League Against Cruel Sports and carried out independently by Ipsos MORI in 2017 shows that 85 per cent of respondents are in favour of keeping the ban on fox hunting. Data is available here.

For more information or interview requests please contact the League Against Cruel Sports Press Office on 01483 524250 (24hrs) or email [email protected]

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. 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).