National Trust members vote to ban trail hunts on its landon October 30, 2021 at 5:59 pm

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

The charity will now consider the result of the non-binding vote to stop trail hunts on its land.

Trail hunting

Image source, Getty Images

National Trust members have voted to ban trail hunting on its land amid fears it is being used as a “smokescreen” for illegal foxhunts.

The Hunting Act 2004 banned using dogs to chase or kill foxes. Trail hunting simulates a traditional hunt by laying an artificial scent for riders.

A total of 76,816 votes were cast to ban trail hunts on trust land, with 38,184 against and 18,047 abstentions.

The results of the vote are not binding and trustees will consider the outcome.

The vote was taken at Saturday’s annual general meeting at Harrogate Convention Centre in North Yorkshire.

Members who proposed the ban said “overwhelming evidence leads to the conclusion that trail hunting is a cover for hunting with dogs”.

Demonstrators from the League Against Cruel Sports gathered outside the event and welcomed the result, saying “enough is enough”.

But the Countryside Alliance, which campaigned against the motion, said the number who voted represented only a “tiny proportion” of the National Trust membership of more than five million people, and therefore gave no mandate.

Mark Hankinson

In 2018, the National Trust permitted 25 groups to trail hunt on its land and said it would follow the same approach in 2019.

But in 2020 it paused licensing after video emerged of a prominent huntsman giving advice in webinars about how to covertly carry out illegal fox hunts.

Earlier this month, director of the Masters of Foxhounds Association Mark Hankinson was found guilty of intentionally encouraging huntsmen to use legal trail hunting, which a court heard described as “a sham and a fiction” covering for the unlawful chasing and killing of animals.

He was ordered to pay £3,500 after Westminster Magistrates’ Court’s Deputy Chief Magistrate Tan Ikram concluded he was “clearly encouraging the mirage of trail laying to act as cover for old fashioned illegal hunting”.

The National Trust released a statement that said after Hankinson had been found guilty it would “digest all the information… before making a decision on whether to resume the trail hunting licence application process”.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.

- Advertisement -

Discover

Sponsor

Latest

Kyle Rittenhouse: Jury retires in trial of US teen gunman Rittenhouseon November 16, 2021 at 12:26 am

Hundreds of troops have been placed on standby as a verdict looms in the Kyle Rittenhouse case.Image source, Getty ImagesThe jury has been sent...

Netflix may have edge on competition as coronavirus keeps people looking for new shows

This article is part of a series tracking the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on major businesses, and will be updated. It was originally...

Britain’s Hewett loses Australian Open wheelchair singles finalon January 27, 2022 at 9:06 am

Britain's Alfie Hewett is beaten in the Australian Open wheelchair singles final by Japan's Shingo Kunieda.

The Art of Perseverance: Kirstie’s Journey

Entrepreneurship is the great equalizer. Regardless of your background, opportunity, education, and a myriad of other social factors, if you can find a way...

Netherlands beat Norway to book place at World Cupon November 16, 2021 at 10:12 pm

The Netherlands seal their place at the World Cup finals in Qatar with victory against Norway, who miss out on next year's tournament.