December 1999. The Home Secretary Jack Straw announces a Government inquiry into hunting with dogs, to be chaired by Lord Burns, the ‘Burns Enquiry’.
To inquire into:
“the practical aspects of different types of hunting with dogs and its impact on the rural economy, agriculture and pest control, the social and cultural life of the countryside, the management and conservation of wildlife, and animal welfare in particular areas of England and Wales;
the consequences for these issues of any ban on hunting with dogs; and
how any ban might be implemented.
To report the findings to the Secretary of State for the Home Department
The committee commissioned a range of scientific research, undertook a series of visits to hunting events and held a number of evidence hearings.” The committee did not look “to address the ethical aspects of the subject”.