Here’s a headline for all hunt supporters, all hunt apologists, for all hunt lobbyists and for all pro-hunt MPs who continue to tell us constituents that hunts only go ‘trail hunting’ – “Fitzwilliam Hunt apologises after funeral ceremony disturbed by “20 to 30” hounds“. How the hell do you explain that away? In a year that has seen such tragedy, such loss of life, so many communities turned upside down and inside out, so many families separated, so much grief, how do you explain away the notorious Fitzwilliam Hunt (who have an open invitation to ‘Come Hunting’ on their homepage), losing control of their hounds and allowing them to run through a crematorium as mourners were trying to cope with the loss of a loved one? What possible excuse can you come up for this?
As Peterborough Matters reports today:
Fitzwilliam (Milton) Hunt has apologised for distress caused last week when a group of hounds ran through a crematorium while a funeral was in progress
On December 16, members of the public saw the Fitzwilliam (Milton) Hunt of Milton Hall hunting a fox across a busy road and into the grounds of the Peterborough Crematorium.
The disturbance occurred as the road was lined with mourners and well-wishers, waiting to pay their respects to a much-loved local woman
The incident was brought to the attention of Peterborough Hunt Sabs, a voluntary group of committed people who campaign against “the unlawful bloodspot of hunting animals with hounds”.
They received complaints via their social media pages about the incident and one eyewitness told the group: “I was there, it was my auntie’s funeral when they sent about 20 or 30 hounds chasing a fox through the crematorium when there was a funeral in progress.”
Another added: “Absolutely disgusting behaviour from the Fitzwilliam red coat fox hunters today… You could hear the fox howl as it escaped the woods and ran for safety into the crematorium to be followed by dogs charging across the road and into the crem too.
“As if these times aren’t hard enough without a convoy of dogs you also had some idiot in his red coat on horse back darting up and down screaming and shouting without a care in the world for those families saying goodbye to their loved ones”.Shariqua Ahmed, Peterborough Matters, 24 Dec 2020
Incredible, really. Just weeks after the now infamous Hunting Office webinars were leaked with their talk of ‘smokescreens’ and the ‘soft underbelly’ of terrier work undermining claims of ‘so-called ‘trail hunting’ (see – Hunts on the Run), just a week after Peterborough Council voted to ban foxhunting saying “This council resolves to do everything within its legal powers to prevent trail hunting, exempt hunting, hound exercise and hunt meets on its land”, the Fitzwilliam Hunt invades the council-run Crematorium! You couldn’t make it up…
And this happens at precisely the same time that the website of the ludicrous Hunting Office – trying (and failing) to show ‘leadership’ during what even hunts know is a really, really bad time to be riding around in packs stirring up trouble and stretching the spirit of the lockdown laws to breaking point – are asking hunts to ‘behave with courtesy, respect, and good manners towards, members of the public‘.
‘Behave with respect’. Does that include – as succinctly summed up by one of the mourners at the funeral quoted above – “Some idiot in his red coat on horse back darting up and down screaming and shouting”. Yep, real classy, Fitzwilliam, real classy…
Later in the Peterborough Matters report there is a quote from an unnamed ‘hunt spokesperson’ who says that, “Following this incident, we will be holding a meeting to discuss methods of ensuring that this does not happen again.”
There is one way that the Fitzwilliam Hunt can absolutely guarantee that disgraceful incidents like this don’t happen again, that they don’t lose control of their hounds again (which is illegal), and we can be sure that no more foxes are ever chased and killed by these hooligans (which is illegal) – and that’s to shut the bloody hunt down.
Because as night follows day, there will be more incidents like this while hunts are allowed to pretend they’re going out so-called ‘trail hunting’ with impunity – and with absolutely zero respect for the public and for wildlife…
If you’d like to support this growing movement towards a better countryside, please let your own council know that you want hunts banned. And why not consider joining LACS or the Hunt Sabs as a ‘feel-good’ Christmas present to our wildlife – or at the very least please let the Hunt Sabs know when you see hunts out and about breaking the law: