Lessons in cruelty and law breaking: Top public school to teach pupils how to hunt hares with dogs – despite being illegal

Hunt Saboteurs Association Press Release 4th October 2013


ETON College is planning to host a hare hunting ‘training day’ to teach pupils how to chase and kill hares with dogs, the Hunt Saboteurs Association can reveal.

The Young Hare Hunters’ Day is set to take place on Eton College premises on Sunday, October 13th.

The event will see pupils from Eton, which still has its own pack of hunting beagles, being trained in all aspects of hare hunting by huntsmen from around the country.

Nearly 10 years after the ban on hunting with dogs, the HSA is asking why such an event is taking place at all.

HSA Press Officer Lee Moon said: “Why are they teaching Eton College pupils how to hunt hares with dogs when this vile practice was quite rightly banned almost 10 years ago.”

One of the ‘tutors’ on the day will be Mr Steven Duckmanton, of the Gloucester-based Dummer Beagles, who will be giving lessons in ‘handling hounds’.

Mr Moon said: “Steven Duckmanton is well known in hunting circles for having one of the highest kill rates of any beagle pack in the country”.

Last season he reportedly claimed to have killed ’37 brace’ of hares (hunting speak for 74 individual animals) whilst out with his pack. The HSA believes it is unacceptable that an individual who is blatantly and routinely breaking the law should be training school children in law breaking activities at Britain‘s top public school.”

The HSA will be holding a peaceful demonstration at the college for the duration of the event; and, as the hunting season approaches, will continue to closely monitor the activities of the Eton College Beagles.




Notes to Editors

 (1) The Prime Minister David Cameron attended Eton College and is a committed supporter of all forms of hunting. The Heythrop Foxhounds, with whom he used to ride, were convicted of illegal hunting in December 2012.


(2) ‘Beagling’, which sounds quite cuddly and innocuous, is the practice of hunting hares with a pack of beagles. The hounds are followed on foot by the hunters.


(3) There are 68 beagle packs operating in Britain today. Three of these are run by public schools (Eton College, Radley College and Stowe). These packs are often regarded as a training ground for the foxhunters of the future.


(4) Since the hunting ban beagle packs have become extremely secretive about their activities. The HSA believes illegal hunting of hares is widespread amongst beagle packs.

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