The HSA can reveal that Tory MP and Leader of the House of Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg, has recently cancelled his membership of a controversial hunt group.
Rees-Mogg has been a paying subscriber to the Chilmark & Clifton Foot Beagles for about a decade, but has recently decided not to renew his subscription. Like all beagle packs, the Chilmark & Clifton Foot continue to hunt hares under the guise of “trail hunting.” The HSA believes that Rees-Mogg is trying to sever his links with hunting before the general election in a few weeks time.
HSA Press Officer, Lee Moon commented, “When even a fanatical hunt supporter like Jacob Rees-Mogg is distancing himself from a hunt you have to ask what is going on. If the Chilmark & Clifton Foot are really engaged in trail hunting then why is Rees-Mogg turning his back on them?”
Rees-Mogg also has close family ties to the neighbouring Mendip Farmers Hunt and regularly hosts them at his Somerset home. Hunt sabs have frequently had to intervene when this hunt have chased foxes and blocked badger setts.
Notes to editors:
(1) The Chilmark & Clifton Foot Beagles are one of about sixty beagle packs that hunt hares on foot.
(2) Footage of the Mendip Farmers Hunt chasing a fox can be seen here :https://www.league.org.uk/
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 30th October 2019
Mark Vincent and Ian Parkinson have been found guilty of keeping a fox captive and inflicting suffering upon it in breach of the Animal Welfare Act. Both men were employed by the Kimblewick Hunt at the time of the offence on 1st January this year. The trial took place at Oxford Magistrates Court and the two will be sentenced on 26th November. The Judge in the case advised the defendants to expect a custodial sentence.
The prosecution came about after footage was passed to the Hunt Saboteurs Association by the Covert Film Unit showing the two men releasing a captive fox to be chased and killed by the Kimblewick hunts hounds. Their actions not only cause unnecessary harm to the fox but are also carried out to facilitate illegal hunting.
The footage was filmed on New Years Day when the hunt met at Moreton, Thame, Oxon. It shows the hunt terrier men using draining rods to force the fox, that they’ve been holding captive, out of a drainage pipe then being thrown into the wood for hounds to chase. The terriermen can clearly be heard communicating with the huntsman agreeing when the best time is to release the fox which is given a brief head start so that the hunt riders experience a chase rather than a quick kill.
Lee Moon, Spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “We're pleased that justice has been done and look forward to Vincent and Parkinson receiving the prison sentence their actions deserve.
What we also want to see is further prosecutions against the huntsman, Hunt masters and the Kimblewick Hunt itself. This was clearly a criminal conspiracy between the two defendants and the rest of the hunt to release a captive fox to be illegally hunted and all those involved should be punished. We also expect the Countryside Alliance to condemn this hunt and for the Masters of Foxhounds Association to kick them out of the association. Anything less will be tacit approval of animal cruelty and illegal hunting.”
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 23rd October 2019
Chris Amatt, ex-huntsman of the Thurlow Hunt, appeared at Ipswich Crown Court this week to appeal his conviction for illegal hunting that he received in March this year. The prosecution used evidence gathered by Beds and Bucks and North Cambs Hunt Sabs.
However it transpired that the defence were prepared to offer a deal before the appeal took place. It was suggested that Amatt would accept the conviction for hunting if the prosecution no longer pursued the case against him for the assault charge. It would appear that the reasoning behind this was Amatt's urgent requirement to travel to the USA for personal reasons and this would not be possible with a conviction for violence.
Lee Moon, Spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated: “The Hunting Act conviction was always the priority in this case. Regardless of the assault charges being dropped we are more than happy with the outcome and can add the Thurlow Hunt to the list of hunts we can now call criminal organisations and warn others that the tide is turning and you no longer have the protection you once enjoyed.
Hunt saboteurs priority is always to save animals lives but on the rare occasions that we can’t achieve that we’ll always pursue hunts through the courts.”
Original Press Release can be viewed here:
Original case video and post can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 22nd October 2019
We’re delighted to hear that the Tredegar Farmers Fox Hunt in South Wales have disbanded. They were sabbed on several occasions last season by South Wales Hunt Saboteurs who reported a spectacular lack of support for the hunt, on one occasion only having three riders out.
Their closure follows close on the heels of the Atherstone who were destroyed by West Midlands Hunt Sabs, and the Woodland Pytchley who were forced into an acrimonious merger with their neighbours at the Pytchley over the summer. Even the Quorn Hunt, one of the most famous in the hunting world have gone begging cap in hand to their neighbours at the Cottesmore to ask for a merger. This has so far not gone ahead but the writing’s on the wall for the Quorn unless they find a solution soon.
Three beagle packs – The Vectis, The Claro and the North Warwickshire have also disbanded due to lack of support.
Lee Moon, Spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association stated: “The season hasn’t even officially started yet and already three hunts have folded.
The Countryside Alliance will come out with their usual spiel of increased urbanisation and new railways (that haven’t been built for years!) but the reality is that hunting is a dying sport, abhorred by the majority. The Countryside Alliance and the Masters of Foxhounds Association will have done everything in their power to prop up these ailing packs but the forces arrayed against them are just too powerful and inevitably more hunts will fold due to pressure from sabs and lack of support.
Hunt Saboteurs Association News Release 9th October 2019
After six long years of an unrelenting and unstoppable campaign by West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs the 200 year old Atherstone Hunt have finally thrown in the towel and folded.
The sabs have faced harassment, extreme provocation and regular violence from those associated with the Atherstone Hunt. They’ve received death threats, had tyres slashed, cars burnt out and have been hospitalized. They have also faced a hostile campaign of police harassment from Leicestershire Police who have actively sabotaged investigations against the Atherstone Hunt whilst constantly seeking to prosecute members of the group.
Over the last six years they have sabbed almost every single meet of the Atherstone Hunt who have collected over 20 criminal convictions and cautions for their violence and antisocial behaviour and at their worst they were making the national press every other month for their hunting and violence. As well as stopping them killing foxes twice a week every week sabs have been able to expose the real face of fox hunting.
For six years the Atherstone Hunt have been completely sabotaged and as a result they have now folded. This means that for now the 908 km² area of West Leicestershire and North Warwickshire are completely hunt free and hundreds of foxes lives will now have been saved Ultimately the Hunting Act needs to be strengthened however sabs are not waiting around for politicians to change the law or corrupt police forces to enforce the law. Fox hunting is cruel and barbaric and has no place in the 21st century. Hunt saboteurs will shut hunts down one by one until hunting is consigned to history.
Lee Moon, spokesperson for the Hunt Saboteurs Association, stated:
“This is a fantastic achievement by West Midlands Hunt Sabs and testament to what direct action can achieve. The Countryside Alliance will have done everything in their power to prop up the Atherstone but they still haven’t been able to save the hunt in the face of such determined opposition.
The pro-hunt lobby blame urbanisation, motorways and changing farming practices for hunts struggling but the reality is that theirs is a dying sport that has no place in the 21 st Century and is abhorred by the majority. West Mids sabs have dedicated the victory to their fallen comrade Leanne Bridgewater and that sums up the true calibre of the group.
Sab groups across the country will take inspiration from this victory and we expect to see an increase in groups focusing their efforts on a particular hunt. As always the Hunt saboteurs Association will support their efforts in whatever way we can.”