On Saturday 28th January, hunt saboteurs from Calder Valley, West Yorkshire and East Yorkshire Coast caught the Middleton Hunt out on the Garrowby Estate, in the East Riding area of Yorkshire. In the shocking footage, a fox flees from the hunt’s hounds, merely a few meters in front of the pack.
Huntsman Jason O’Donnell – on a white horse – is seen right next to the chase, watching what is happening and doing nothing to call the hounds off. This illegal hunting took place in Preserve Plantation, within the grounds of Lord Halifax’s Garrowby Hall.
Members of Calder Valley Hunt Saboteurs present at the scene cracked whips – the hounds are trained to stop at the sound of a whip cracking – and used voice calls to slow the hounds down and buy the fleeing fox some time to escape. It is unknown whether the hounds managed to kill the fox within the large wood.
The Middleton Hunt seemed determined to kill and the fox in the footage was only one of many chased by the hunt during the day. Later on in the day, Jason O’Donnell took his hounds to an artificial fox earth near Skirpenbeck, built by the hunt to ensure a ready supply of foxes to chase, as he knew a fox would be there to chase.
Calder Valley Hunt Saboteurs commented:
“Our footage once again proves that ‘trail’ hunting is a lie and is only a cover for illegal fox hunting. Without sabs present, many foxes would have died that day.
Why does the hunt maintain an artificial fox earth on the Garrowby Estate? The only explanation is that they continue to hunt and kill foxes, with the full blessing of Lord Halifax and the Garrowby Estate.”