Lord Ian ‘Beefy’ Botham is amongst the many grouse shooters heading home tonight with an empty bag, as sabs continue their rolling action across the north of England.
Botham’s Peak District shoot was located in the nick of time. A line of ‘beaters’ – who use flags and whistles to scare terrified birds towards the guns – was assembling, so brave sabs took to the moor to place themselves between the grouse and the guns. With the beaters completely outmaneuvered, the shooters wisely returned to their lodge. From here a stand-off ensued, before the entire shooting party retreated off the moor.
Today’s action follows the complete shut down of a huge driven shoot in the Yorkshire Dales on the so-called Glorious Twelfth itself, and another victory yesterday where sabs prevented shooting near Ladybower Reservoir in the Peak District.
On the Twelfth, spotting teams found the Peak District to be a shoot-free zone – because of sab action in previous years – though Yorkshire Dales colleagues quickly located a shooting party at Abbotside Common near Hawes. In sweltering conditions, sabs faced down ‘over-enthusiastic’ policing and hired security to win the day.
On Monday, sabs easily located the Wentworth Fitzwilliam estate’s shoot after its head gamekeeper publicly bragged to the pro-bloodsports Field Sports Channel that the way to avoid ‘antis’ is to just skip the Twelfth. They may need to reassess this tactic!
A saboteur commented from the scene:
“Since last Friday sabs have been in action across the Yorkshire Dales and Peak District. We have saved hundreds – perhaps thousands – of birds from being blasted out of the sky and drawn further attention to the cruelty and ecological destruction inherent in this outdated activity. While others talk, we act: and our campaign against grouse shooting goes on.”