HSA news release 18th February 1998
A Hunt Saboteur from Sussex was the latest casualty in a war that is going on unreported in the British countryside. Today's attack was at Heyshot, near Midhurst, W.Sussex.
At approximately 12 noon today, a hunt rider with the Chiddingfold, Leconfield and Cowdray Foxhunt, rode deliberately into a small group of Hunt Saboteurs on a public footpath and using his horse as a weapon, barged the protesters into a ditch.
As the rider passed, he spurred and whipped his horse to make it kick out, and in doing so, the horse kicked saboteur Andy Wasley, 21, from Brighton, in the arm as he raised it to stop himself being struck in the face. The saboteur sustained a broken humerus (upper arm) which splintered through the skin.
A nearby gamekeeper, shocked and outraged at what he had just seen gave the injured saboteur a lift to the nearest road to wait for an ambulance. The injuries were treated at St. Richards Hospital, Chichester.
The police were informed at the time of the attack, and the rider was pointed out to them, however, they saw fit to allow the rider to continue his day's hunting uninterrupted. So far, the police have refused to interview the saboteur over his complaint of assault.
This incident comes after the huntsman of the C, L & C, admitted to saboteurs in the morning that his riders were becoming 'very frustrated' at the success of the local Hunt Saboteurs in stopping his hunt killing foxes. The hunt have a history of violence towards saboteurs, in November 97 a hunt master was video'd riding over a cameraman filming for Nippon TV, on Boxing Day 97 a hunt employee was arrested for threatening a group of saboteurs with an iron bar in full view of the police in Petworth town centre, and as recently as last Saturday, a group of hunt supporters threw a heavy bottle jack through the side window of the saboteurs' van and tried to smash other windows before the police arrived on the scene.
In the current climate, it is terrifying to imagine what will happen if yet another Hunt Saboteur is killed by hunter.
Some video is available of the incident and its aftermath.