How is Fox Hunting still Prevalent in the UK?

Fox hunting has been around in the UK for many years and is one of the oldest “sports” on records. As far as the majority of the country is concerned, there is definitely no longer room for this “sport” in our culture. You always hear the excuses of keeping English heritage in tact – To retaliate to that statement, most people honestly don’t want to be linked to a culture that enjoys killing defenseless animals. It’s not just the UK that take part in fox hunting or the hunting of any other animals, but it is something that is still done worldwide and we need to finally draw the line and sort this out.

Fox hunts date back hundreds of years when the Normans brought it over to our country and it happens more regularly and a lot closer to you than most people think. Atherstone and Warwickshire are just a couple of places where it is still current in the west-midlands, with some hunters going out 4 times a week with their horses and hounds.

Typically, the huntsman would leave in the early hours of the morning, on their horses and with the hounds, typically beagles, by their side. Long story short, they use the dogs to track the foxes or hares, the prey is then chased and more often than not, killed. There is often no valid reason other than fun, for killing a defenseless animal. Is this reason enough?

3 different organisations shared their work and perspectives on fox hunting including; The West Midlands Hunt Saboteurs, The One Kind organisation and a SAB that goes out on a weekly basis to help stop the killing of the foxes. There have been a lot of videos and information going around on social media about Saboteurs attempting to make them look bad, but more often than not, these people are abused both verbally and physically and sometimes even followed after they have successfully stopped a hunt. You’ll be able to see an increase in videos on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook of SABS recording their efforts and showing what horrible people the hunters can be, with no compassion for animals or other people.

When speaking to a variety of saboteurs, it is clear that Saboteurs do not use any form of dangerous methods, they are in the best interest of everybody and use peaceful methods such as essential oils and voice calls. Their goal is to keep the foxes, hares and hounds safe. Their goals are to just stop the hunts and bring more awareness to the cause. Learning about their daily routine puts the planning and sabbing into perspective.

(Day in the life of a sab – Diary entry or infographic)

So why after all this hard work, is this still legal? To answer your question, it’s not 100% legal in the UK. Countries like Scotland have completely banned hunting, but with a license and stricter conditions in England, it remains partly legal. However, these lenient restrictions leave room for error, often people are doing it illegally and not in the “safe” manner in which the government gives them permission. Now the dilemma with the Conservative party has arisen and people had a few things to say about the matter. With the Conservatives slyly supporting fox hunting, it has been perceived that the party agrees that ‘animals do not have feelings’.

(Include Interviews about campaigns)

 

Charlotte Rogers

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