FoxLetter to my MP …

Dear Mr Norman,

As you will know the Government have announced that a vote will take place next week to weaken the Hunting Act.

Before I go any further I feel it’s important to point out to you that I have extensive experience of both fox and stag hunting. I grew up on the edge of Exmoor. My home pack was Torrington Farmers, I also went out with Dulverton West foxhounds, and Dulverton East and Tiverton foxhounds when they came over near enough. I also went out with the Devon & Somerset staghounds and the Tiverton staghounds. i know what hunting is about, how it is practised and precisely how useless it is as an ecological or environmental conservator. I saw many disgusting practices during the years I rode to hounds – they convinced me that the whole idea of hunting was neither environmentally sound nor civilised. Hopefully the above will have convinced you that I’m someone who knows what they’re talking about.

If you need to cull foxes then get a good shot to go out with a rifle and a lamp – you will account for a dozen foxes in a couple of hours and they will all be the appropriate ones to be culled, not nursing mothers. Similarly if deer need to be culled (which they will do while we continue not have wolves) you send out good shots – and then you can eat the delicious venison afterwards. The thought of trying to eat deer after it’s been running for an hour or two makes my teeth hurt! It would be worse than trying to eat an old boot!

The revision in the law is sneaking hunting in through the back door by making it easier for hunts to chase and kill foxes, deer and hares and harder for them to be convicted when they break the law. The law was passed with an overwhelming all-party majority, there is absolutely no reason to waste parliamentary time and money (my money!) on trying to change it. There are far more worthy and useful things for you all to be doing in parliament than fussing about making hunting legal, I really need – as your constituent – to know that you will not be supporting this waste of time and money for absolutely no good purpose.

On the lines of cruelty and inhumanity you could try watching this video here: As your constituent I want you to watch it and to let me know how it made you feel.

The main argument currently being used to justify this weakening of the Hunting Act is that it is necessary for ‘wildlife management’ – put more simply, that it is necessary for controlling fox numbers. Time and time again it has been shown that hunts artificially manipulate fox numbers to ensure there are always plenty to hunt – the recent media expose of fox cubs being kept in a barn connected to a hunt is yet another instance of this. and I see it happening around me here, and always have seen it all my life wherever there is hunting.

Fox hunting has nothing to do with pest control – it is animal cruelty pure and simple and related to the acts which serial killers begin their careers with – torturing and killing animals. As a psychologist I find it quite unacceptable that “blood sports” are allowed as a means of satisfying a lust that really needs to be dealt with medically.

I hope that I can count on you to vote to protect the Hunting Act next week.