Around 250,000 people will turn out on Thursday 26 December for the biggest day of the hunting calendar - the Boxing Day meets of 250 plus UK hunts.
The coalition agreement includes a commitment to a vote on the repeal of the Hunting Act and DEFRA has also said it will give consideration to a proposal from farmers to amend the law to make it easier to flush and shoot foxes. Farmers believe this amendment is crucial as we come into the lambing season.
Speaking ahead of the annual Boxing Day spectacle, Countryside Alliance executive chairman Barney White-Spunner said:
“We have less than 18 months left in this parliament but the Government is still to make good many of its promises to the countryside – not least the pledge of support to hunting.
“Tackling the failed Hunting Act is a matter of trust between David Cameron, the coalition Government and the countryside. In three and a half years the Government has done nothing to address this illiberal, unjust and divisive law.
“The arguments for repeal or replacement of the ban are unarguable. Proposals to amend the Act backed by science have been brought forward and there is solid support in Parliament. Doing nothing is not an acceptable option.
“Hunting is a totemic issue and even a small improvement to the current situation would go a long way to persuading rural people that the Government is in step with them.”