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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 188

Date:- 19 February 2005

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Majority of rural people oppose hunt ban

A NEW poll conducted by MORI for the BBC shows that the majority of rural people oppose a ban on hunting. The poll of 2,234 people UK-wide shows that even in urban areas there is no majority support for a ban. 

The results were compared to a similar survey carried out in 1999, which asked respondents the same questions. The 2005 results show that opposition to a ban is declining and that more and more people are falling into the don't know or don't care categories.

Commenting on the poll, Alliance spokesman Darren Hughes said:- "It is becoming increasingly clear that there is declining support for a ban on hunting in all areas of the UK. The British public have been listening to the arguments and can see that a ban has no animal welfare benefits - the only people not prepared to listen are the bigoted Labour politicians who forced through the Hunting Act. This is another clear example of the Government not reflecting the views of the people of this country. 

If you want to see the overwhelming opposition to a ban on hunting, come and support your local hunt on 19 February. The Hunting Act is an unjust, unenforceable and unworkable piece of legislation and will not stand the test of time."

Countryside Alliance to petition House of Lords over Parliament Act challenge

THE COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE has announced that it will ask the House of Lords to consider the validity of the 1949 Parliament Act following this week's ruling in the Appeal Court. 

Three senior judges accepted that the provisions of the Hunting Act are "highly controversial" and "bitterly opposed by substantial sections of the public", but decided not to overturn the 1949 Parliament Act. However, in their judgement they agreed with most of the key arguments put forward by the Alliance's legal team. The Attorney General, on behalf of the Government said that he supported our application for the case to be heard in the House of Lords.

Furthermore, the Courts instructed the Attorney General not to 'hide behind the courts' in rejecting the question of Interim Relief. Earlier the Attorney General conceded that our application had considerable merit. The Courts also rejected the Attorney General's wish that we should bear the Government's costs.

Alliance Chief Executive Simon Hart commented:- "We will immediately petition the House of Lords to consider our case, and the Appeal Court ruling provides strong grounds for them to find in our favour. The court felt uneasy about overturning an Act of Parliament that has been accepted for 55 years even though there were question marks over its validity.

If an Act of Parliament is incorrectly enacted, then it is invalid, irrespective of whether it was passed yesterday, last week, last year or 55 years ago. We are confident in the strength of this challenge as well as the very important challenge to the legislation on human rights grounds."

THE END?

IT was a cold day on Monday 14 February, but it did not cool the tempers. Violent clashes between Anti Hunt and Pro Hunt had to be kept separated by lines of Police as the media got court in the middle. Hunt supporters bombarded the ante hunt protesters with fireworks, coins, bottles and clumps of turf. This was never going to be a quite end as organizers of the highly controversial event had brought the three day long event forward by one week to escape the ban on hunting with hounds. 

The ban came into affect on Friday 18 February. One Formby resident who does not want to be named told us that "I am disappointed that the ban did not come in sooner.  This is not sport and I am very sad that it happens on our door step.  It is a disgrace that they call it a 'sport'.  This barbaric so called sport, I hope is no longer.   They are just a bunch of fugs who like seeing small defenses animals ripped to shreds and we call our county civilize."  Despite the overwhelming support for the ban, according to the anti hunt , pro hunt remain defiant, telling the media that "We will be back." Send us your views to:- news24@southportreporter.com 

A barbwire fence seperating two opposing sides representatives, as national TV and Radio Merseyside interview them. All the time cry from both sides threaten to drown out the interviews. (Below)

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