July 2013

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31.7.13

Southern Daily Echo 31.7.13 Royal couple visit New Forest Show By Chris Yandell, Chief Reporter, New Forest - The Earl and Countess of Wessex were given a crash course in country sports when they visited the New Forest and Hampshire County Show today… After inspecting a batch of weapons on show at the Police Countrywatch stand, the Earl and his wife visited the pro hunting Countryside alliance… (story)
Bournemouth Daily Echo 31.7.13 UPDATED: Earl and Countess of Wessex attend second day of the New Forest Show By Jenny Awford - THE New Forest Show is today getting the royal seal of approval for the second year in a row. The Earl and Countess of Wessex are attending the popular show after the Queen rounded off her Diamond Jubilee tour with a visit last year… (story)

Stroud Life 31.7.13 WWT in firing line over gull cull licence - SLIMBRIDGE'S Wildfowl and Wetland Trust has been granted licences to kill birds, including gulls, mallards and coots in a move which has shocked wildlife campaigners… The Captive Animals Protection Society says the licences are an "appalling betrayal" of animals and the public. (story)

Southern Daily Echo 31.7.13 Trust tries to vaccinate badgers and fight cull By Duncan Eaton - A MAJOR programme to vaccinate badgers is forging ahead as Hampshire & Isle of Wight Trust fight back against the Whitehall cull of the iconic countryside creatures. Late last year the Trust launched an urgent Badger Vaccination Appeal to raise £45,000 for a care package to protect local badgers and cattle from Bovine tuberculosis…. (story)

Irish Examiner 31.7.13 Hunters blamed for reintroducing wild boar herds in rural Clare - Underground hunting rings are believed to be behind the reintroduction of herds of wild boar into rural County Clare. By Andrew Hamilton - Three separate herds of wild boar have been discovered by authorities in forestry areas in the east and south of the county in recent weeks — with a total of 24 animals being captured from the wild…. According to Clare County Council’s ISPCA Dog Warden, Frankie Coote, the animals are likely being released on purpose so that their offspring can be hunted for sport… (story)

Plymouth Herald 31.7.13 Animals shouldn't suffer for our food - REFERENCE the article "Was pony killed in sick satanic ritual on moor?... Approximately 56 billion animals, sentient beings, are killed every year for food, many suffer painful procedures and all suffer the fear of the slaughterhouse… VALERIE FRY Plympton (story)

Bournemouth Echo 31.7.13 Street tins raised £227 - ANIMAL Aid would like to thank the people of Wimborne for their generosity in raising £227.60 at a street collection on July 27… MRS J SALMON, Animal Aid Collection Co-ordinator (letter)

30.7.13

Yorkshire Post 30.7.13 From: John Rimington, Technical liaison officer, Hare Preservation Trust, Bridgwater, Somerset. IN addition to its dispassion towards the RSPCA, the Countryside Alliance is now turning its attention to the BBC…. Nobody is doing more to promote a “them and us” division in society than Mr Spunner unfortunately (letter)

Fishing Magic 30.7.13 Cheshire Game and Angling Fair - The Cheshire Game and Angling Fair takes place at Peover Park in Knutsford, Cheshire on Sunday 04 August and this year marks the 30th anniversary of the county’s premier event for game enthusiasts and anglers…. (story)

BBC News Online 30.7.13 Plan to tackle UK rural mobile black spots revealed - The government has published details of its plan to provide mobile coverage to 60,000 homes and businesses currently in black spots before the end of 2015…. However, the Countryside Alliance - a lobby group running a "not-spots" campaign - said it was disappointed the government was no longer talking about providing mobile coverage to 99% of the country's population, as suggested by the Treasury in 2011… (story)

29.7.13

Computer World 29.7.13 The scale of the government's broadband betrayal will haunt the rural economy for years - Shadow Cabinet Office Minister Chi Onwurah discusses the failings of the government's rollout of superfast rural broadband - I grew up in a city and whilst I’ve worked in three continents I always lived in cities. The odd ramble in the beautiful countryside of Northumberland or County Durham aside, I have always considered myself essentially urban. How strange therefore that I should find myself the champion of rural Britain against the Conservatives and the Lib Dems… Countryside Alliance executive chairman Barney White-Spunner himself commented: "We now know that only nine of 44 broadband projects are projected to reach their 90 per cent superfast coverage target by May 2015."… (story)

Derby Telegraph 29.7.13 Bovine TB – take a look at cattle's living conditions - ALL my life, except for some time spent in Basel, in Switzerland, in the early 1960s, I have lived within a stone's throw of fields and so do not class myself as a "townie". However, I am concerned about the plans to kill off badgers… Cattle are crowded together in large sheds for much of the time and shed floors soon become coated with excrement and urine…. The farmer pumps up the slurry into a mobile tanker and takes it to his fields. When the weather turns fine, the farmer turns his cattle out onto his fields to eat the grass… Granville V Stone Swanwick (letter)

BBC News Online 29.7.13 Pigeon shooting at Wiltshire shopping centre 'reckless' - The shooting of pigeons at a shopping centre has been condemned as "reckless" by an animal rights charity. Managers at The Shires in Trowbridge, Wiltshire, brought in pest controllers to shoot the birds to control numbers… A spokesman for PETA said: "Humane, non-lethal methods of deterring wildlife are always more effective than resorting to violence."… Adam Rogers, from the Feral Pigeon Project, said he discovered pigeons were being shot at The Shires after rescuing one of the birds from the river with a wounded wing…. (story)

28.7.13

Sunday Telegraph 28.7.13 Sight of a badger spreads fear in the county about to ban the cull - Residents in Derbyshire fear the county council's ban on culling badgers is endangering their cattle. By William Langley, in Derbyshire … The cows are above ground grazing, the badgers are below ground snoozing, and Angela Sargent, whose family has worked here since the 1930s, is in her farmhouse “stressing”…. If one of Mrs Sargent’s cattle wanders too close to a badger habitat, it risks contracting bovine TB, a disease for which there is no cure…. (story)

27.7.13

The Sentinel 27.7.13 Fox hunting grandad's children went without - T aken well over a century ago, this photograph from a meet of the North Staffs Hunt has particular significance for a Potteries woman. Valerie Windsor, from Bucknall, was given a copy of the picture 15 years ago as it features her grandfather, Fred Bagnall. Fred, seen on horseback on the far right, worked as a valet for Colonel Sir William Dobson, next right, the owner of Parkers Brewery of Burslem… (story)

Irish Examiner 27.7.13 State-sanctioned animal abuse reflects moral decay - The violent death of two defenceless elderly brothers at their home in Castlebar has unleashed grief and anger… This moral decay extends into our treatment of the non-human members of our society…. Until all forms of hunting with dogs are rendered illegal, society cannot deal with animal abuse…. John Tierney Campaigns Director Association of Hunt Saboteurs PO Box 4734 Dublin 1 (story)

Western Morning News 27.7.13 Farm CCTV captures badger raids on food stores By Peter Hall Farming Editor - Badgers are being caught on security cameras raiding food stores on farms in the South West. The cameras are being installed on 75 of the region's farms as part of research to help prevent the continual spread of bovine tuberculosis between badgers and cattle…. (story)

South Wales Evening Post 27.7.13 Stop buying, save animals - YOU can help to save animals from the wildlife trade. Each year travellers buying souvenirs while away on holiday in local markets and shops, unwittingly buy products made from wild animals or endangered species…. Marlene Charles Brynhyfryd (story)

Argus 27.7.13 Rehome 9,000 chickens from Sussex farm sending them to slaughterhouse - Animal lovers are being urged to “act now” to save 9,000 chickens from the slaughterhouse…. for the past few years Brighton Animal Action has been working in partnership with Mac’s Farm in Ditchling to save the birds from the butchers. Sue Baumgardt, from the animal rights group, said: “They still lay perfectly good eggs, just not to the standards of the supermarkets…. (story)

Kidderminster Shuttle 27.7.13 Calling for CCTV in abattoirs - Since Animal Aid first began exposing widespread cruelty inside UK slaughterhouses four years ago, we have campaigned for mandatory CCTV to be installed in abattoirs…. Now we do know, why won't the government act? Is it afraid of what these cameras might show? KATE FOWLER, Animal, Bradford Street, Tonbridge, Kent (letter)

26.7.13

Western Morning News 26.7.13 Photographer shares the thrill of capturing a perfect equine shot - He's snapped horse celebrities from Desert Orchid to Arun Tor and Nest Mate: Equine photographer Hamish Mitchell shares some thrills and spills of his career with Gillian Molesworth…"The first time I photographed a hunt, I asked the huntsman which way they were likely to go," he recalled. "He pointed to a line of hedges and I ran off across the fields to get set up. I waited and waited but no one came. The hounds had gone in a completely different direction, and I was lost. In the end I had to find the nearest road and stick my thumb out."… (story)

Watford Observer 26.7.13 Horrified owners find pet cat mauled to death by fox in Watford garden By Mike Wright, Chief Reporter - A young couple from Watford have been left shocked and fearing for the safety of their infant son after their cat was mauled to death by a fox as it slept in their garden. Elzbieta Gottwald said she is scared to leave her garden doors open after her husband discovered the savaged remains of eight-year-old Sweetie on Friday (July 19)… (story)

ANIMAL AID VIVISECTION LETTER
Darlington & Stockton Times 26.7.13 Experiments - It is disappointing to read Claudia Tarry's letter (D&S letters, July 19) containing, as it does, the usual mixture of half-truths, distortions and black propaganda designed to suggest to your readers that animal experimentation is somehow akin to wicked children pulling the wings off butterflies… Anyone who compares a veterinary drug formulary with a human one will see that 90 per cent of the drugs which they contain are the same; how could this be true unless animal and human bodily mechanisms were also broadly the same? ROGER A FISKEN Burneston, Bedale (letter)
Darlington & Stockton Times 19.7.13 Experimental pledge - CLAUDIA TARRY Animal Aid Tonbridge, Kent (letter)
Northern Echo 26.7.13 Animal Research - CLAUDIA TARRY is incorrect to suggest that animal experiments are either archaic or useless in medical, veterinary and scientific experiments… It is illegal to use an animal in the UK if there is an alternative and, while we should never deny the possibility of animal suffering in a lab setting, it is important that we balance the costs and the benefits and do not exaggerate either….. Chris Magee, Understanding Animal Research, London. (letter)
Bradford Telegraph & Argus 26.7.13 Help end suffering - Claudia Tarry, Animal Aid campaigner, The Old Chapel, Tonbridge, Kent a target=main href="http://www.thetelegraphandargus.co.uk/news/news_opinion/tafeaturesletters/10573655.Help_end_suffering/">(letter)
Oxford Mail 24.7.13 Genetically altering mice not the answer - CLAUDIA TARRY, campaigner, Animal Aid, The Old Chapel, Tonbridge, Kent (letter)
Belfast Telegraph 23.7.13 Lab experiments on animals rise - IN spite of a post-election pledge by the coalition to reduce animal experiments, new figures show the total has risen…. Researchers must abandon archaic animal tests and adopt progressive, human-based science instead. CLAUDIA TARRY Animal Aid (letter)
Northern Echo 22.7.13 Animal experiments - Claudia Tarry, campaigner, Animal Aid. (letter)

Northern Echo 26.7.13 Sheep Olympics - I FELT compelled to write about plans by a farmer in Lanchester, County Durham, to hold a kind of alternative to the Grand National, featuring sheep instead of horses… . He also said that the sheep enjoyed it. What rubbish. In fact, I can’t believe this story is for real. Whatever next? Leave these poor creatures alone and get a life. I Pearson, Norton. (letter)

25.7.13

Western Morning News 25.7.13 Mobile phone 'neglect' in West - The lack of mobile phone coverage in the countryside could be regarded as "little more than negligence", says a new county chairman of the Country Land and Business Association in the Westcountry…. (story)
North Devon Journal 25.7.13 Mobile phone coverage ‘neglected’ in Westcountry - The lack of mobile phone coverage in the countryside could be regarded as “little more than negligence”, says a new county chairman of the Country Land and Business Association in the Westcountry…. The Countryside Alliance believes the days of farmers disappearing, uncontactable, into the fields for the day should be long gone…. (story)

Western Morning News 25.7.13 WMN poll results show nearly two thirds against a badger cull - Almost two-thirds of people who voted in an exclusive poll on the Western Morning News website are opposed to a cull on badgers. More than 13,000 people voted in the poll on www.westernmorningnews.co.uk, which finished yesterday, with 7,922 responding 'no' to the question, Do you support a cull against badgers to eradicate spread of bovine TB? and 5,223 voting 'yes'…. (story)
Western Morning News 22.7.13 Opponents to badger cull continue to lead WMN online poll - The 'no' camp continues to lead the Western Morning News's exclusive online poll into the controversial badger cull – though the gap is narrowing. As of 5pm yesterday, 6,750 votes had been cast on our website at westernmorning news.co.uk on the question: Do you support a cull against badgers to eradicate spread of bovine TB? Some 52% – or 3,491 votes – were against the Government-licensed cull… (story)

Oxford Mail 25.7.13 Public are barred from animal testing details - I AM replying to Pamela St Clair’s reply to Sheila English’s letter (July 17) “There is more cruelty to animals taking place behind closed doors.”… to accuse SPEAK, or any other anti-vivisection organisation, of neglecting cruelty cases like the Russell’s is disingenuous. PETER and PAULINE BROUGHTON Welford Road Northampton (letter)
Oxford Mail 9.7.13 We won’t stop fighting for defenceless animals - I read with interest Pamela St Clair’s letter with regard to the Russell family and their cruelty to animals, and firstly would like to point out to her that, out of the regular Speak protesters, there are only two who reside in the Oxford area, and nobody from Speak knew about the cruelty case to which she refers…. Speak protesters, (the average age is regularly more than 70 years of age), travel from all around the country giving up their Thursdays, and often extra days too. I travel 110 miles, each and every Thursday, to get the message across that vivisection is outdated, unethical, unreliable and unbelievably cruel… SHEILA ENGLISH, Jacks Lane, Turvey, Bedford (letter)

BBC News Online 25.7.13 Activists in Wedmore release 100 sheep from pens - Activists in Somerset released more than 100 sheep from pens because they mistakenly believed they were being mistreated. The activists contacted the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA) but it found there were no welfare concerns. The farmer said the action had stressed the animals… (story)

Meat Trades Journal 25.7.13 PETA turns to magician in latest foie gras tactic - Magician Uri Geller has sent a letter to the boss of Fortnum & Mason offering to hypnotise him in a bid to get foie gras removed from the store’s shelves. Geller sent the letter to Ewan Venters in support of vegan group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals’ (PETA’s) campaign against Fortnum’s sale of foie gras, which is illegal to produce in the UK… (story)

24.7.13

Lincolnshire Echo 24.7.13 Countryside Sports Association organised young person activity day - Young Persons Activity Day, a chance to try five different activities at Riseholme College Lincoln, try Fly Fishing And Gun Dogs, Archery, Clay Shooting, Air Rifle, Hawking and Ferreting. open to age form 7 -17 year of age, the day starts at 10.00 am and finishes at 15.30. on 21st of September 2013 a snack lunch will also be provided for each person…. (story)

Western Daily Press 24.7.13 RSPCA on the offensive – but at what cost? By Tim Bonner - The RSPCA is reeling from a number of decisions that have cost it thousands of pounds and according to its critics, undermined its credibility. Tim Bonner of the pro-hunt Countryside Alliance gives his view… (story)
Western Morning News 23.7.13 Is the RSPCA following a political agenda with its prosecutions policy? - The RSPCA is reeling from a number of decisions that have cost it thousands and, according to its critics, undermined its credibility. Tim Bonner of the pro-hunt Countryside Alliance gives his view… before the case against the Heythrop Hunt concluded, the RSPCA had launched three further prosecutions involving hunts, each one, in my view, highlighting misuse of the of the criminal justice system… The first case to reach court involved farmer Keith Watson, who is a supporter and terrierman for the Cheshire Hunt…. After a year of legal activity, it took just one question from the district judge and half an hour in court for the RSPCA to admit the prosecution was unsustainable. At about the same time that the RSPCA started its prosecution of the Watsons, it charged two other men, Brian Nuttall and Justin Schofield, under the 1973 Badgers Act. The men, who had been assisting the Cheshire Forest Hunt with exempt hunting in March 2012, were investigating an area of rabbit holes, brash and rubbish for foxes… The RSPCA then dropped the case at a pre-trial hearing nearly a year after the alleged incident, at huge cost to itself and the taxpayer. The third prosecution involved the Avon Vale Hunt in Wiltshire. In March 2012, two members of a hunt were involved in what they admitted from the start was a foolhardy and illegal attempt to rescue a dog from a badger sett. But this was not enough for the RSPCA. It wanted a trial and decided to launch a 2004 Hunting Act prosecution as well… Eventually, the RSPCA had to admit defeat in this case as well…. (story)

CA ON RURAL AFFAIRS COMMITTEE REPORT
Mail 24.7.13 Families in the countryside pay more tax but get worse public services: MPs slam 'unfair' deal for rural areas By NICK MCDERMOTT - Rural families are being penalised with higher taxes for fewer public services, MPs have warned.. Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman of the Countryside Alliance: ‘We need to see a fair settlement from government to deliver rural services… (story)
Lutterworth Mail 24.7.13 Communities 'suffer rural penalty' - Countryside communities in England suffer from a "rural penalty" which the Government is not doing enough to address, a parliamentary report has warned…. (story)
Shropshire Star 24.7.13 Communities 'suffer rural penalty' - Countryside communities in England suffer from a "rural penalty" which the Government is not doing enough to address, a parliamentary report has warned - Rural people face higher house prices and more expensive council tax bills, but receive less government funding for services like schools and suffer housing shortages and poor mobile phone and broadband coverage, said the report from the cross-party Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee…. Countryside Alliance executive chairman Sir Barney White-Spunner told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "Living in the countryside obviously is very nice in many aspects... but there are all sorts of issues that make it more complex… (story)

Oxford Mail 24.7.13 Animal tests do not give accurate readings - THE debate about animal testing for medical research is a complex one… Halting animal testing does not mean halting medical progress as there are many alternatives. PAM TREADWELL, Dodgson Road, Cowley, Oxford (letter)

Leicester Mercury 24.7.13 Pigs don't deserve to end up on the barbeque - Ian G Lambert complained about the "acrid smelling smoke and food burning barbecue regime"… My thoughts are with the animals whose flesh is consumed in vast quantities during the barbecue season. So spare a thought for pigs when biting into your pork sausage… Elizabeth Allison, Aylestone. (letter)

23.7.13

Gloucester Citizen 23.7.13 Beaufort Hunt hounds success at Welsh Hound Show. THE Gloucestershire and Wiltshire based Duke of Beaufort's Hunt scored a resounding success at this year's Welsh Hound Show in Builth Wells winning both the bitch and doghound championship as well as the supreme championship…. (story)
Gloucester Citizen 22.7.13 Hunt proves the top dog - HUNTSMEN and women are celebrating success with their hounds. The Gloucestershire and Wiltshire-based Duke of Beaufort's Hunt scored a resounding success at this year's Welsh Hound Show in Builth Wells… (story)

Derby Telegraph 23.7.13 Wildlife crimes in police spotlight - A WILDLIFE summit, aimed at seeing how crimes against animals and birds of prey can be better policed, is taking place in Derbyshire. The event, organised by the county's police and crime commissioner, Alan Charles, will take place in South Normanton in September. Mr Charles announced the news following the publication of a report he commissioned, produced by Derbyshire police, which highlighted how in the last year officers had been made aware of 200 incidents involving wildlife. These include poaching, badger baiting, hare coursing and the poisoning of birds of prey. The RSPCA and the RSPB were also asked to contribute to the report, which was heard at yesterday's meeting of the strategic governance board at force headquarters in Ripley… (story)

Stroud News & Journal 23.7.13 SDC to hold forum to debate badger vaccination By Tamash Lal, News editor - STROUD District Council is to actively explore vaccinating badgers as an alternative to the Government’s policy of culling the animals. The Labour group, which leads the ruling rainbow alliance on SDC, has organised a special forum at Ebley Mill to investigate the science behind vaccination…. (story)

Worcester News 23.7.13 We have to reduce this animal testing - The latest government statistics show that more than four million animals were used in experiments in the UK during 2012 – equivalent to more than 11,000 experiments every day. It is unacceptable that millions of animals continue to suffer and die in UK laboratories… MICHELLE THEW Chief executive, British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection (BUAV) (letter)

22.7.13

Derby Telegraph 22.7.13 Badger culling banned on council land - BADGER culling will be banned on all Derbyshire County Council owned land and support will be given to the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust’s vaccination programme…. (story)

Western Daily Press 22.7.13 Country people stop wildlife persecution - In response to the letter by J J Boucher (Western Daily Press July 18), the ecosystem could manage if humans weren't here, like it did before, but humans couldn't survive without it… If it wasn't for enlightened real country people campaigning and getting legal protection for threatened and persecuted species, they would have been extinct by now. Andrew Williams West Country badger patrol group (letter)

Worcester News 22.7.13 Huge numbers of GM animals being killed - Despite a Government commitment in July 2011 to reduce the number of animals that are used in experiments, a total of 4.11 million animal tests were carried out last year, an increase of 8.36 per cent on 2011…. The National AntiVivisection Society (NAVS) considers that the harm suffered by GM animals can never outweigh any purported benefits JAN CREAMER Chief Executive National Anti-Vivisection Society (letter)

Plymouth Herald 22.7.13 Can you join the RSPCA army? WE WOULD like to ask for your readers help. The weekend just passed is known as Black Saturday, when we log the highest number of calls in one day… It is worth remembering that the RSPCA has fewer than 500 frontline staff for the whole of England and Wales who deal with these calls and investigations… It is this ever increasing demand for our services has led to the RSPCA to call for a 'home guard' of willing volunteers to help it take up the strain – affectionately dubbed animal welfare's answer to 'dads – or mums – army!'. We hope this special volunteers group will be formed by summer 2014 and provide specialist voluntary support to our officers during peak times… KEVIN DEGENHARD RSPCA Chief Officer of the Inspectorate (letter)

21.7.13

Smallholder 21.7.13 Rural broadband is poor, say pollsters - The National Audit Office has released its report “The rural broadband programme”. The report is highly critical of the Department for Culture Media and Sport and its handling of the process to roll out broadband to rural areas…. Countryside Alliance executive chairman Barney White-Spunner said: “For a long time we have known this strategy is not making the inroads it needs to make to ensure that the UK has the best superfast broadband network in Europe by 2015… (story)

Observer 21.7.13 England's ceremonial mayors eschew fur to support animal rights - Peta survey of civic leaders shows use of real animal fur in robes is declining despite fashion industry's continued use - James Meikle - Animal fur may remain fashionable on catwalks, but lord mayors and other senior council figures in England have been happy to eschew haute couture by dropping its use or going faux… The survey of 23 lord mayors was carried out by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta), which is still awaiting answers from some, including Roger Gifford of London… (story)

20.7.13

Shropshire Star 20.7.13 Accused blamed brother for Otis Ferry burglaries - A man with an “obsessive personality” has been accused of carrying out a burglary at Shropshire hunt protester Otis Ferry’s home while wearing rubber gloves and a Halloween mask, a court has heard… (story)
Shropshire Star 17.7.13 Man denies raids on Otis Ferry’s Shropshire home - A man has appeared in court charged with taking a haul of valuables from the homes of pro-hunt campaigner Otis Ferry, a police officer and his former employer. Nigel Harris, 36, of Lower Cross in Cross Houses, near Shrewsbury, broke into Mr Ferry’s home in two separate raids in April and October last year and stole goods including mobile phones, a computer and a rifle case. He also stole goods from the homes of Detective Sergeant Christopher Hughes and his former employer Gerald Martin…. Mr Ferry is the joint master of the South Shropshire Hunt and is a fox hunting enthusiast and pro-hunting protester. (story)

Western Daily Press 20.7.13 Where does all this science came from? In reply to John Tuck's letters, I would like to know where he gets all his scientific information, or being well up in the NFU, is it the farming industry's propaganda? At least the Welsh are trying, without the mass slaughter of the innocent… Nigel Vizor Malmesbury, Wiltshire (letter)
Western Daily Press 20.7.13 My problems is with the pro-cull farmers - In response to the the letter by John Tuck about farmers and bovine TB (Daily Press, July 16) I have always emphasised in my letters that it is pro-cull farmers I have a problem with, so I am not recanting on anything. Andrew Williams. West Country Badger Patrol Group (letter)

Mail 20.7.13 Police, RSPCA and firemen turn up mob-handed to seize vet, 70, over claim he was cruel to his dogs By LIZ HULL - A retired vet woke to find a police torch being shone into his face when officers raided his home after the RSPCA received a tip-off that his two pet dogs were being maltreated. A total of 13 officials – police, firemen and RSPCA officers – turned up unannounced in six vehicles at 70-year-old John Spicer’s home and broke down the door to get in while he was asleep. His sheepdogs Puppy and Little Boy were taken away and Puppy was destroyed immediately…. He had his fingerprints, DNA and mugshot taken and was held in a police cell for 24 hours before being released. Yesterday he criticised the RSPCA for being heavy-handed and said he has still not been told what has happened to Little Boy… (story)

Lancashire Telegraph 20.7.13 Dawn raids in East Lancashire in huge animal cruelty crackdown By Sophia Rahman - DAWN raids were carried out in one of East Lancashire’s biggest crackdowns on wildlife crime. More than 20 police and RSPCA officers swooped on 11 homes across Pendle yesterday. The operation targeted people suspected of training their dogs to maim or kill pets and wild animals for fun…. An undercover officer for the RSPCA, who took part in the operation, said: “It’s absolutely disgusting what is done to these animals…. Darryl Cunnington, an investigations officer for animal welfare charity, the League Against Cruel Sports, attended the raids…. (story)

Express 20.7.13 Dionne Bromfield in controversial new animal rights ad - AMY WINEHOUSE's goddaughter DIONNE BROMFIELD has posed with a skinned fox for a provocative new animal rights advert… The poster, which will be displayed at various locations during London Fashion Week in September (13), is the latest in a hard-hitting drive by People for the Ethical Treatment ofAnimals (PETA)…. (story)

Essex Echo 20.7.13 Forget the stereotypes ...we prove veggie food can be fun By Hannah Marsh - WHEN you say you’re a vegetarian, you expect familiar, rather boring stereotypes to be made about you – and the same goes for a vegetarian eating establishment. But Oak Tree Market, in Leigh, is a far cry from the assumed interior of patchwork quilts woven out of recycled tights and posters for socialist bands and baby yoga groups… (story)

19.7.13

Tamworth Herald 19.7.13 Show's exciting blend of old and new attractions By Elise Chamberlain - THE Canwell Show, one of the largest and oldest one-day agricultural shows in the Midlands, is fast approaching… Other highlights in the main arena this year will include a display by the Jamie Squibb Motorcycle group who will be performing hair-raising tricks, a parade of fox hounds by the Master of the Meynell and South Staffordshire Hunt and a performance from the West Midlands Fire Service band… (story)

Tamworth Herald 19.7.13 Show's exciting blend of old and new attractions By Elise Chamberlain - THE Canwell Show, one of the largest and oldest one-day agricultural shows in the Midlands, is fast approaching…. Other highlights in the main arena this year will include a display by the Jamie Squibb Motorcycle group who will be performing hair-raising tricks, a parade of fox hounds by the Master of the Meynell and South Staffordshire Hunt… (story)

Dorset Echo 19.7.13 Badger cull: farming minster "pleased" with county council's "cop-out" vote - COUNCILLORS have been accused of a ‘cop out’ after they decided not to take a strong stance on badger culls…. Photo: PROTEST: Sam Pawley, Andrew Butler and Ian Mortimer (story)

Barnsley Chronicle 19.7.13 Charity condemns 'shameful' swan shooting - By Katia Harston, Chief Reporter - A swan has been shot with an air rifle and left to die, in what a wildlife charity has branded a shameful act of animal cruelty… Dan Sidley, from the Yorkshire Swan Rescue Sanctuary, said injuries to swans caused by air rifle pellets are 'all too common'…. (story)

Bristol Post 19.7.13 RSPCA changed our attitude towards animals - THERE was a time when it seemed as if the RSPCA was a mainstream charity whose only concern was to rescue stray cats and starving dogs… Then it all changed with the arrival of Gavin Grant as chief executive. He shouted out about every known alleged animal abuse, from factory farming to badger culling in Somerset…. (story)

Medical News Today 19.7.13 Vegetarians, vegans and elderly at higher risk of B12 deficiency - Vegetarians, vegans and the elderly are at high risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency through changes in their diets, according to a review of scientific studies published in theJournal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry… (story)

18.7.13

Mail 18.7.13 Make 'townies' take an exam in rural affairs before they are allowed to vote, says David Gower By SIMON CABLE - He is almost as well known for his laid-back persona as he is for his prowess on the cricket field. But David Gower has directed a furious broadside at Britain’s ‘townies’, whom he claims are ignorant of countryside issues and should be tested on rural affairs before being allowed to vote…. The cricketer lives in Braishfield, Romsey, with his Icelandic wife Thorunn and two daughters, Alexandra, 19 and Sammi, 17. He made the comments to Reader’s Digest magazine. He also defended the controversial countryside pursuits of fox hunting and pheasant shooting, saying they provided an effective form of pest control and conservation… (story)
Gloucestershire Echo 18.7.13 'Teach city dwellers about the countryside', David Gower says - URBANITES should be made to learn about the charms of rural life, a former England cricketer has said…. (story)

Bromsgrove Standard 18.7.13 Crowds flock to Hanbury Countryside show - HUNDREDS of entries, a record number of visitors and plenty of summer sunshine made this year’s Hanbury Countryside Show the most successful in its 66-year history… With cattle, sheep and chicken showing, horse showing, show-jumping and dressage, there was plenty to enjoy, quite apart from spectacles in the main arena which included displays by heavy horses, stunt quad-bike driver The Kangaroo Kid, working dogs and hound parades… (story)

Exeter Express & Echo 18.7.13 Law is unfair to hunt victims - SINCE the implementation of the Hunting Act in 2005, I have observed many hunts and attended many court cases brought against hunters… Ivor Annetts, Tiverton (letter)
Mid Devon Gazette 16.7.13 Face up to your hunt-case responsibilities, CPS - SINCE the implementation of the Hunting Act in 2005, I have observed many hunts and attended many court cases brought against hunters. My experiences have led me to the following firmly held beliefs. Many hunts continue to go out regularly with the firm intention of breaking the law. When brave individuals are discovered attempting to record events, they are frequently intimidated and sometimes assaulted and robbed of their equipment… NAME AND ADDRESS SUPPLIED (story)

Ilkley Gazette 18.7.13 Better relations plan as Ilkley Moor shoots set to continue By Amanda Greaves - Councillors have backed a report recommending the continuation of shooting rights on Ilkley Moor and efforts to improve relations between shoots and walkers… Committee chairman, Councillor Martin Love (Green, Shipley), said: “We’re hoping that during this season, from August onwards, the Bingley Moor Partnership will do more publicity, and we’re also asking them to look at their gamekeepers’ behaviour towards members of the public.”…. (story)
Ilkley Gazette 18.7.13 Caring for our famous moor By The Editor - The scrutiny review of the Ilkley Moor Sporting Rights Deed has turned up some interesting findings, and ideas which could well be of benefit to the many who use, enjoy and care for the moor…. (story)
Bradford Telegraph & Argus 10.7.13 Ilkley Moor shooting rights reviewed - Councillors may call for Ilkley Moor gamekeepers to undergo public relations training following reports of a “stream of complaints” from dog walkers…. (story)

Leigh Journal 18.7.13 Shocking act on summer evening - I WAS in my garden last night enjoying the summer sunshine when a large wood pigeon flew on to my rooftop in the most frantic state… it had been shot… If people are so desperate to use a gun, firstly grow up and be a man, and secondly maybe try going to Afghanistan to defend something worthwhile as my nephew does instead of recklessly destroying declining wildlife for ‘sport’. S Berry (letter)

Western Morning News 18.7.13 Latest TB figures confirm 258,700 people are wrong - When it comes to petitions numbers count. So how can 258,700 people – signatories all to the most signed e-petition ever on the Government website – be wrong?.. So do those three-quarters of a million people and rising, who signed up to Queen guitarist and animal rights protester Brian May's anti-cull petition, understand the awful cost – financially and emotionally – that the loss of 12,000 cattle has on the farming families affected?... (story)

BADGER CULL ARSON ATTACK
Western Gazette 18.7.13 Cull activists deny links to arson attack - ACTIVISTS opposing a controversial badger cull say they will not support any attempts to stop it by intimidation…. Jay Tiernan, of Stop the Cull, says his organisation had nothing to do with the alleged attack at Middle Tarr which is not among the 11 farms named as being involved…. (story)
Gloucestershire Echo 16.7.13 Badger-cull opponents condemn tractor arson By STEVEN IMPEY - ACTIVISTS opposing the controversial badger cull have condemned attempts to derail the slaughter after a tractor was set ablaze in Somerset…. Liz Gaffer, spokeswoman for Gloucestershire Against Badger Shooting (Gabs), said: "We certainly do not believe in any form of intimidation… A tractor and hay baler were also found alight at Severn Ham, near Tewkesbury, on Sunday evening…. (story)
Gloucester Citizen 15.7.13 Cull opponents blamed for tractor blaze - ACTIVISTS opposing the badger cull are suspected of setting a tractor on fire…. (story)
Western Daily Press 15.7.13 Extremists suspected of tractor arson By Tina Rowe - Animal rights extremists opposed to a badger cull are suspected of an arson attack on a tractor at a Somerset farm, Police Special Branch officers are understood to have been called in after the incident at Middle Tarr Farm at Lydeard St Lawrence near Taunton. The farm has no cattle and is not involved in the cull… (story)
Sunday Times 14.7.13 Arson attack is first shot in badger war - Kevin Dowling and Simon Trump - ANIMAL rights extremists are suspected of carrying out the first attack in what is feared could become a violent campaign against the controversial badger cull. Police Special Branch is understood to have been called in after a tractor was set ablaze at Middle Tarr farm near Taunton in Somerset…. (story)

Scotsman 18.7.13 Ill use of animals - I am sure many people were as shocked as I was to read: “11,000 animals tested on every day in UK”… David Martin MEP Midlothian Innovation Centre Roslin, Midlothian (story)

(Redditch Advertiser archive) 18.7.13 Wall Heath animal lover on mission to save caged bear - AN animal lover from Wall Heath is on a mission to help free a bear from captivity in Eastern Europe but she needs help from generous traders. Jane Gwilliam was so touched by the story of Masha, a five-year-old brown bear who has been raised on a dog breeding site in the Ukraine, that she decided to help fund the rescue bid. London-based charity Four Paws plan to save Masha, who is attacked by hunting dogs on a daily basis, and take her to their bear sanctuary where she will be nursed back to health… (letter)

17.7.13

Donside Piper 17.7.13 Rural rollout for high speed broadband - Households and businesses across Scotland are finally set to reap the long-awaited rewards of high-speed fibre broadband. It’s all down to a government and private sector partnership after the former was criticised for the slow rollout of faster connections to countryside communities… Countryside Alliance’s director for Scotland, Jamie Stewart, said: “”We are delighted that government has embraced what has been one of our highest priority campaigns… a target=main href="http://www.donsidepiper.co.uk/news/local-headlines/rural-rollout-for-high-speed-broadband-1-3003965">(story)

Scottish Farmer 17.7.13 New appointment for SCAET - FIONA TURNBULL has been appointed as the new chief executive of the Scottish Countryside Alliance Education Trust… (story)

Derbyshire Times 17.7.13 Leave our badgers alone: Farmers are being unfair - IN REFERENCE to the controversial topic of badger culling, Derbyshire Times 20th June – isn’t it typical of farmers to blame anything and everything, if it isn’t financially favourable to them? I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry when I heard the suggestion that ‘one badger could wipe out a whole herd of cattle’. Just a minute, let me get some tissues…. AS Name and address supplied (letter)

16.7.13

Horse & Hound 16.7.13 Kennel cough keeps hunts away from Peterborough Royal Foxhound Show - An outbreak of kennel cough means several leading foxhound packs will not be able to contest classes at the Festival of Hunting at Peterborough tomorrow (17 July), the blue riband of hound shows. The Masters of Foxhounds Association (MFHA) and the organisers of the festival have have had to exclude any pack that went to Great Yorkshire Show (9-11 July). This is because kennel cough has since been confirmed in a pack that showed there…. One of the packs left desperately disappointed is the Heythrop. Their Heythop Raspberry won the bitch championship at Harrogate… The Grove & Rufford who also enjoyed considerable success at Great Yorkshire are amongst other packs that will have to wait until next year to compete at Peterborough. (story)

Belfast Telegraph 16.7.13 Blood sports are a cowardly act and must stop - THE goring of several men in the annual Pamplona bull run has drawn attention again to this barbaric festival… Ireland's answer to the bull run and bullfighting is hare coursing… Bullfighting and bull running may be among the bloodiest cruelties ever devised, but hare coursing surely ranks as the world's most cowardly blood sport. JOHN FITZGERALD Campaign for the Abolition of Cruel Sports (letter)

Shields Gazette 16.7.13 ‘Killer foxes’ fear of cat shelter boss - A CONCERNED cat lover has warned of the threat posed by ‘killer’ foxes in South Tyneside. Maria Harrison, who runs the Willows Cat Shelter in Wantage Street, South Shields, has spoken out after the Gazette reported the death of an 18-year-old cat called Chloe, who fell prey to a fox earlier this month in the Lawe Top area of the town… (story)

Mail 16.7.13 RSPCA fatcat 'rakes in 45% more' than the previous boss - but the charity is spending LESS on animal welfare By SAM GREENHILL - The new ‘fat cat’ boss of the RSPCA is being paid up to 45 per cent more than his predecessor, figures revealed yesterday. Gavin Grant was accused of ‘brazen greed’ at a time when the animal charity’s income from donations is falling. Figures also showed the RSPCA is spending less on animal welfare, but more on prosecuting people for alleged cruelty… (story)

15.7.13

Western Morning News 15.7.13 Propaganda publication that is dripping with class envy By Chris Rundle - Anyone who believes the art of black propaganda died with Joseph Goebbels, the man who did the PR for Hitler, evidently hasn't seen the latest offering from the Stop the Cull coalition, which is now dropping through the letterboxes of homes in the two culling zones. Indeed the good Doktor, Reich Minister of Propaganda, would probably be proud to think that his policies and practices are being so closely adhered to…. (story)

Shropshire Star 15.7.13 Letter: TB?not the only issue in cattle industry - Is TB really the most worrying thing in the cattle industry with 28,000 animals killed? What about the 75,000 killed because they are not in calf, 50,000 killed because of Mastitis, 25,000 killed because of lameness? Don’t they matter then?... Judith Ashley Whitchurch (story)

Stourbridge News 15.7.13 Stourbridge shoppers support farm animal charity - GENEROUS shoppers in Stourbridge helped raise £77.85 for Britain’s leading farm animal welfare organisation following a street collection last month. The money will enable Compassion in World Farming to continue its campaign for increased standards of farm animal welfare…. (story)

Irish Examiner 15.7.13 If only our abattoirs had glass walls - Those of us who refrain from eating dead animal flesh have a saying ‘if only slaughterhouses had glass walls’… Bernie Wright The Ward Co Dublin (letter)

Farmers Weekly 15.7.13 Live animal export protestors gather at Kent Show - Sarah Trickett - Animal rights protestors gathered at Kent County Show this weekend to campaign against live animal exports, which resumed from Dover in May. Although the handful of protestors demonstrated peacefully most of the time on the side of the A249 opposite the Young Farmers (YFC) area of the showground, the Kent County Show Society said they were at one point "verbally abusive" to some YFC members…. (story)

14.7.13

Sunday People 14.7.13 It's a real dog's life as Sean Le Vegan prepares to live like a stray in kennels for 35 days and nights - The Sunday People talks to Sean ahead of his stay in aid of Manchester and Cheshire Dogs’ Home - An animal lover will live in a kennel for more than a month to highlight the plight of ¬abandoned dogs. Sean Le Vegan, 35, will get just one hour of freedom a day to use the ¬bathroom and freshen up after he is “rounded up” by a warden… (story)

13.7.13

Bucks Free Press 13.7.13 Born Free man visits Bucks - THE son of the stars of classic film Born Free came to Marlow to tell schoolchildren about his animal welfare and wild life conservation work. Will Travers from the Born Free Foundation was the guest at Sir William Borlase’s Grammar School's speech day and prizegiving night on June 25… (story)

12.7.13

Darlington & Stockton Times 12.7.13 Children make farmyard friends at Sedgefield Game and Country Fair By Lizzie Anderson - SCHOOL children were given a sneak behind the scenes at a North-East racecourse on the first day of its annual country fair… Clay pigeon shooting, vintage agriculture and tractor exhibitions, sheep shearing demonstrations, trade stands, food and real ale tents, eating contests and hound, beagle, working dog and cattle displays are just some of the activities on offer… (story)
Northern Echo 21.6.13 School pupils offered free entry to action packed country fair By Lizzie Anderson - PRIMARY school pupils will enjoy a host of outdoor activities when they attend an action packed country fair next month. Sedgefield Racecourse in County Durham is inviting schools across the North-East to the first day of its annual Game and Country Fair on Friday, July 12… Guests can also look forward to clay pigeon shooting, vintage agriculture and tractor exhibitions, sheep shearing demonstrations, trade stands, food and real ale tents, eating contests, hound, beagle, working dog and cattle displays, and many other countryside activities… (story)

Horse & Hound 12.7.13 Foxhound puppies stolen in nighttime raid - Thieves have stolen two foxhound puppies that were being walked by a hunting family in Kent. The two male puppies, “Stroller” and “Student”, are 10-12 weeks old. They were being walked by the Palmers, who are Ashford Valley Tickham subscribers… (story)
Kentish Express 9.7.13 Foxhound puppies stolen from farm at Egerton near Ashford by James Scott - A family is appealing for information after two foxhound puppies were stolen. Burglars broke into stables at a farm off Bedlam Lane, Egerton before taking 10-week-old hounds Stroller and Student, between 9pm on Sunday night and 8am on Monday morning. It is thought they ripped down a fence before breaking into the outbuilding before stealing the dogs, their feed, horse blankets and grooming kit… The puppies belonged to Ashford Valley Hunt and were due to stay with Mrs Palmer and husband farmer Adam, both hunt members, before being returned to the pack in September… The burglars also targeted a neighbouring farm taking two ferrets, diesel and a petrol strimmer were stolen…. (story)

Blackmore Vale Magazine 12.7.13 Three Hunts raffle raises £30K for Air Ambulance - A SPECTACULAR summer raffle and drinks party was held on Sunday 30th June and looks set to raise in excess of £30,000 for Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance. The event, organised by three hunts (Blackmore and Sparkford Vale, South Dorset and the Portman) was held in appreciation of the work that the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance do within the community…. (story)

Northumberland Gazette 12.7.13 Concerns over rural broadband - Serious concerns have been raised about the project for better rural broadband in a report from the National Audit Office…. Countryside Alliance executive chairman Barney White-Spunner said: “For a long time we have known this strategy is not making the in-roads it needs to make to ensure that the UK has the best superfast broadband network in Europe by 2015…. (story)
Hull Daily Mail 11.7.13 Faster broadband? It's slow going here By Jon Townend - RURAL East Riding is lagging behind other rural areas in pressing ahead with new superfast broadband… Countryside Alliance executive chairman Barney White-Spunner said: "We now know that only nine of 44 broadband projects are projected to reach their 90 per cent superfast coverage target by May 2015."… (story)

Blackmore Vale Magazine 12.7.13 Police say ignore Dorset hoax badger cull posters - FAKE warning signs and threats of squatting protests are cropping up across Dorset in the lead-up to trial badger culls. Dorset Police is urging local residents not to be alarmed by the hoax warning signs, which state that children, pets and livestock should be kept inside while live firing takes place through the hours of darkness from June. Although the posters carry contact information for Natural England, the organisation says they are fake and no culls have been licensed in the county… (story)

Western Morning News 12.7.13 Badgers are biggest casualty of road kill - There may be little sign of it, but the badger cull is happening… on the roads. The country's inaugural roadkill survey has indicated that fast-moving vehicles are proving effective culling machines, with more badgers run over than any other creature. The wild animal accounted for 312 deaths – nearly a quarter of the country's roadkill, according to the initial findings of Cardiff University's Project Splatter…. David Heath… whose home county of Somerset came 11th, accounting for 3% of animal deaths, said: "If you live in the Westcountry you can see evidence of overpopulation every day of the week. "In my constituency [Somerton and Frome] there is not a single lane where you won't see a dead badger."… (story)

Isle of Thanet Gazette 12.7.13 "FARM to fork lesson served" (Isle of Thanet Gazette, July 5), missed out on one crucial element – the slaughter of the animals… As a vegan myself, nobody would have a problem with how the food I eat is grown and how it ends up on my plate…. Gerard Bane, Ramsgate Vegans (story)

Oxford Mail 12.7.13 Vegetarians are strongest - WHEN the champion wrestler ‘Killer’ Kowalski went over to a vegan diet in the 1950s, someone asked him where he got his protein from. His reply was “all the biggest and strongest animals on earth are vegetarian; elephants, horses, cattle, etc. None of them eat meat.”… HUGH MANNING Great Clarendon Street Oxford (letter)

Independent 12.7.13 Bullfight cruelty - Why is The Independent glorifying the Running of the Bulls (“So what’s your beef?”, 11 July)? At the end of the frightening and hazardous chase through the streets of Pamplona, the bulls face a long and torturous death in the bullring… Kevin Mutimer, London SE6 (letter)

11.7.13

James Barrington’s blog 11.7.13 Guest blog – Jamie Foster - In March this year Joe Duckworth, the Chief Executive of the League Against Cruel Sports, declared that there was a “war in the countryside”… As is often the case an organisation can begin to show its true colours in the ignominy of defeat and the League is no exception. It did something which indicated that as an organisation it had lost a grip on its own moral compass. A League monitor filmed a three year old girl, the daughter of a follower of the Quantock Staghounds… On behalf of the child’s mother I wrote to Joe Duckworth asking that the child’s image was removed. I received a letter back the following day from the League’s solicitor informing me that the League did not feel it needed permission to film a small child and stating that the image would not be removed. I asked the mother’s MP, Jeremy Browne, to write to Joe Duckworth and invite him to take the image down. Mr Browne kindly did. Joe Duckworth replied to Mr Browne that he had no idea a film had been taken without permission and claimed that he had never heard of me…. While I was doing this, a Devon landowner called Giles Bradshaw began complaining on Twitter that Joe Duckworth, and the President of the League Against Cruel Sports John Cooper QC, were behaving appallingly by running an organisation that treated the child and her mother so callously…. . This weekend he received a letter from Surrey Police warning him that he may be harassing Mr Cooper and Mr Duckworth…. (story)

Worcester News 11.7.13 Allegations over horse racing don’t stand up - Maxine Burgess (Worcester News, June 26) makes a number of allegations regarding horse racing that fail to stand up. To begin with jockeys are certainly not allowed to wear spurs and the use of the regulation padded whip is strictly limited… It would help if Ms Burgess made clear in this newspaper any agenda she has regarding animal rights. This might enlighten us over the reasons for so much of her correspondence. JON BURGESS Malvern (letter)
Worcester News 26.6.13 I see plenty of whip use at race meetings – Letter writer A R Barton (Worcester News, June 17) believes it is not possible to make a horse do anything it doesn’t want to do. Has A R Barton never heard of whips, spurs and harsh bits used on horses? Having worked around horses most of my life I can assure you that it is indeed possible to force horses to do things we want them to do… MAXINE BURGESS Malvern (letter)
Worcester News 17.6.13 Racing has worked to improve animal safety - Re Peter Talbot’s letter (Worcester News, June 13), which is misleading regarding horseracing… Describing Animal Aid as a pressure group is not beyond reason, they wish to prevent the eating of all meat, dairy products and fish, the wearing of wool and leather, any sport or entertainment that includes animals, such as horseracing or angling… JON BURGESS Worcester (letter)
Worcester News 17.6.13 City racecourse does so much that is good - Re the letter by Peter Talbot ‘I used to be a big fan of horseracing...’ (Worcester News, June 13). Worcester Racecourse provides excellent entertainment to the public in general… I would call into question any information regarding the welfare of the horse population from any organisations who actively support wanton vandalism in the name of animal protection…. A R BARTON Droitwich (letter)
Worcester News 13.6.13 I used to be a big fan of horseracing... SIR – Many Worcester News readers will have been shocked at the recent two-week spree of vandalism at Worcester Racecourse… However, no matter how deplorable many will consider this damage to property to be, it pales into insignificance when compared with the damage caused to living creatures by the racecourse and by the horseracing industry as a whole…. PETER TALBOT Worcester (letter)

Western Mail 11.7.13 Cable promises Royal Mail commercial freedom but sell-off stamped an ‘old Tory trick’ - The Government confirmed yesterday Royal Mail will be sold off with staff handed 10% of the shares free of charge but opponents warned of a bad deal for taxpayers… Clwyd South Labour MP Susan Elan Jones said: “The Government’s policy in this area has been roundly condemned by a whole range of organisations including the National Federation of Sub-Postmasters, the Countryside Alliance and the CWU union… (story)

Stroud News & Journal 11.7.13 Badgers bring so much joy - Much has been said and put into print concerning the controversial badger cull which is now underway in parts of the south west, but we must remember one important fact in the overall coverage of this Government decision to eliminate 70 per cent of the badger population… Frank Tunbridge Local naturalist Podsmead Place Gloucester (letter)

Stroud News & Journal 11.7.13 Heed the facts on badger cull - Mary Wood's letter claims to give your readers some facts relating to the imminent badger cull. Regrettably this is a collection of the usual misinformation and nonsense we are repeatedly being given by the farming community… Make no mistake, badger culling is not justified by the science and is a distraction from the much more vital issues of improving the cattle testing procedure and farm biosecurity, as well as developing vaccines for both badgers and cattle. Dr Chris Cheeseman Badger ecologist Retired head of Woodchester Park Badger Research Station (letter)

Stroud News & Journal 11.7.13 MP should state position - Thank you for the picture of the badgers. Like many people I have followed the issue of badgers vs bovine TB. I have also been to a lot of meetings. At no time have I heard any comment from our present MP. … Pamela Dean Whiteshill (letter)

Plymouth Herald 11.7.13 Generosity for Animal Aid is appreciated - ANIMAL Aid would like to thank the people of Plymouth, for their generosity in raising £120 at a street collection on July 6, 2013… KERRY MEDLYN Animal Aid collection co ordinator (letter)

VIVA! KANGAROO MEAT LETTER
Somerset Guardian 11.7.13 Save vegan sausages for pet rabbits - I happen to be visiting your fine county from Australia when I stumbled upon an appalling piece of propaganda against kangaroo meat by some ill-informed hack from Vegetarians International Voice for Animals ("Don't throw Skippy on the barbecue this summer"). Not a single claim the writer made was accurate…. The kangaroo meat industry is also one of the largest employers of Aboriginal Australians, so you can feel good about chucking another roo steak on the barbie. Save the vegan sausage for your pet rabbit. Murray Lees Wells Hill, Radstock (letter)
Ashbourne News Telegraph 10.7.13 Keep kangaroo meat off the shelf - JUSTIN KERSWELL, CAMPAIGNS MANAGER, VIVA!... (letter)
Leicester Mercury 10.7.13 Kangaroo meat is not 'a bit of fun' Justin Kerswell, Campaigns manager, Viva!, Bristol. (letter)
Andover Advertiser 4.7.13 Best to give kangaroo meat a miss - Justin Kerswell, campaigns manager, Viva!, York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol. (letter)
Somerset Guardian 4.7.13 Don't throw Skippy on barbecue this summer - Justin Kerswell Campaigns manager Viva! (letter)
Plymouth Herald 3.7.13 Don't support the killing of kangaroos - JUSTIN KERSWELL Campaigns Manager Viva! (letter)
Western Daily Press 1.7.13 Kangaroo on the 'barbie' is no laugh - I am writing to ask readers to do their bit to help stop the commercialisation of the planet's wildlife and specifically to reject kangaroo meat… Justin Kerswell Campaigns manager, Viva! (letter)
Kidderminster Shuttle 30.6.13 Keep kangaroos off your menu - JUSTIN KERSWELL, Campaigns Manager, Viva!, 8 York Court, Wilder Street, Bristol BS2 8QH (letter)

10.7.13

HOUNDS KILL FOX IN FRONT OF BUS PASSENGERS
Carmarthen Journal 10.7.13 Prosecution dismay after horror attack By Lee MacGregor - THE League Against Cruel Sports says it is disappointed that no-one will be prosecuted after a fox was ripped apart by hounds on a busy Carmarthen road. The Crown Prosecution Service has told the Journal this week that following a joint investigation by Dyfed-Powys Police and the RSPCA, there was not enough evidence to pursue criminal charges against the owner of the dogs. At the time witnesses described how they watched in horror as hounds caught a fox and began "tearing it to pieces" on the A40 between Abergwili and Whitemill on February 16… (story)
Horse & Hound 6.3.13 Rebel foxhound packs give us a bad name, says master - Charlotte White, H&H deputy news editor - Unregistered or “pirate” foxhound packs are givinglaw-abiding hunts a bad name, says the retiring master of the Carmarthenshire. Hounds caught and killed a fox on the A40 between Abergwili and Whitemill in Wales on 16 February, witnessed by the passengers of a bus… Carmarthenshire master Mike Watts said his hunt had been the public’s first suspect, but they were hunting 20 miles away, in Pendine… (story)
Carmarthen Journal 6.3.13 Hunt protesters' priorities wrong - WHILE it is obviously highly unfortunate that hunting hounds managed to get on to the A40, I feel I must point out a slight irony with regard to this story. This will not be the first time a fox will have been killed on the A40…. It seems to me strange that some people obsess about hunting with dogs when by any measure it is relatively minor in the total level of suffering it causes to our wildlife. Giles Bradshaw Rose Ash, Devon (letter)
South Wales Evening Post 5.3.13 Gandhi had the right idea - A SENTIENT creature was torn to shreds by a pack of hounds on a busy road in Carmarthen in broad daylight in front of many horrified passengers on a bus. This barbaric so-called sport is supposed to be illegal, so why is it still happening all over the UK, and why are so few people being prosecuted?... D Lewis Pontardawe (story)
Carmarthen Journal 27.2.13 Fox attack: Dogs belong to foot hunt By Lee MacGregor - INVESTIGATORS say they have identified the hunt which owns the pack of hounds that appeared to rip apart a fox on a busy Carmarthen road earlier this month. Dyfed-Powys Police and the RSPCA are now working on a joint investigation into the incident on the A40 near Abergwili on Saturday, February 16. Witnesses travelling on a bus described how they watched in horror as dogs caught the fox. RSPCA inspector Keith Hogben said the hounds belonged to a foot hunt, but he would not say which one… (story)
Carmarthen Journal 20.2.13 Horror as dogs rip fox apart on road - A PASSENGER has spoken of the moment a bus came to a halt as a pack of hounds chased a fox into a main road in Carmarthen before killing it…. (story)
Carmarthen Journal 20.2.13 Bus horror as dogs 'tear fox to pieces' By Lee MacGregor - POLICE are reviewing CCTV footage taken from a bus following claims that a pack of hounds killed a fox on a main road in Carmarthen. Passengers say they watched in horror as dogs caught a fox and began "tearing it to pieces" on the A40 between Abergwili and Whitemill… Countryside Alliance regional director Rachel Evans said there were "many registered and unregistered packs" of hunting dogs operating across Wales… (story)
Telegraph 19.2.13 Police investigate after hunting hounds attack fox on busy main road - Shocked passengers on a bus watched as a pack of hunting hounds attacked a fox… (story)
Mail 19.2.13 Horror of bus passengers as they see pack of hounds ripping fox to pieces by side of busy main road 'in breach of hunting ban' By JAMES RUSH - Shocked passengers on a bus watched in horror as a pack of hunting hounds ripped a terrified fox to bits on a busy main road… Joint Carmarthenshire huntmaster Martin Walters said: 'Our hounds were 20 miles away in the village of Pendine when this happened. 'We are a registered pack and we are regularly monitored. 'In fact we were being monitored by the National Trust on Saturday when this happened.'… (story)
Mirror 19.2.13 Hounds rip a fox apart on main road: Outraged bus passenger captures scene of horror -A rogue pack of hounds tears into a fox on a main road – as a stunned motorist watches in disgust. The shocking image was captured by an outraged passenger on a bus forced to stop by the dogs as they ripped their quarry to shreds… (story)
BBC News Online 19.2.13 Fox killed by hunt dogs in Abergwili: Police investigate - Police are investigating after a fox was killed by hunting hounds on a busy main road in Carmarthenshire…. Martin Walters, the joint Carmarthenshire Hunt master, said unlicensed hunting with foxhounds was going on in the area… (story)
Western Mail 19.2.13 Photo suggesting dogs surrounding a fox sparks police hunt inquiry - Rachael Misstear - Police are investigating a hunt in which a fox is reported to have been torn apart by a pack hounds at a roadside lay-by in Carmarthenshire…. (story)
Carmarthen Journal 18.2.13 Bus passengers witness pack of hounds kill fox in busy Carmarthen road - LeeMacGregor - BUS passengers watched in horror as a pack of hounds caught and killed a fox in the middle of a main road in Carmarthen at the weekend. Police are believed to be investigating the incident, which took place on the A40 near Abergwili on Saturday morning… A spokesman for the Carmarthenshire Hunt said it was 20 miles away from the incident, in the Pendine area, on Saturday, and had confirmed this to police… (story)

probably Western Telegraph 10.7.13 Badger vaccination will take 'five years to deliver benefits' - The north Pembrokeshire badger vaccination project will take ‘at least five years’ to deliver significant benefits, according to a local AM. Mid and West AM Joyce Watson made the comments in the Senedd on Wednesday, during questions to the Minister for Natural Resources and Food, Alun Davies…. (story)

Guardian 10.7.13 Can shooting badgers be right if shooting foxes is wrong? - Damian Carrington (blog) - Owen Paterson, the RSPCA and the League Against Cruel Sports' positions on shooting appear to have been reversed in the debate over the imminent badger cull - It is time, dear friends, to go through the looking glass to a world where badger cull supporter Owen Paterson deplores a "proliferation of rifles in the countryside" and the cruelty of shooting wildlife, while animal welfare groups praise the humaneness of high-velocity rifles. This is not an Alice-in-Wonderland fantasy, but the positions taken in the acrimonious debate that led to the hunting of foxes with dogs being banned in 2004 in England and Wales…. (story)

COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE MOBILE PHONE MAPPING APP
Haverhill Echo 10.7.13 Matthew Hancock MP encourages constituents to help mobile investigation By Jack Tappin - Matthew Hancock, MP for West Suffolk has endorsed the Countryside Alliance’s new investigation into rural mobile signal based on the development and deployment of the ‘RootMetrics’ smartphone app…. (story)
Wilts & Gloucestershire Standard 22.6.13 Help map mobile phones to improve reception in the Cotswolds (story)
Border Telegraph 20.6.13 Borderers urged to report back on mobile strength - LOCAL MSP John Lamont has urged Borders residents to help in a campaign to see better mobile phone connectivity brought to the Borders…. (story)
Newbury & Thatcham Chronicle 18.6.13 Help your area to get better phone reception - NEWBURY MP Richard Benyon is encouraging West Berkshire residents to become 'phone detectives' and help boost better coverage…. (story)
Dorset Echo 18.6.13 Campaign set to boost phone signals (story)
Belper News 16.6.13 Belper maps phone reception rates (story)
Louth Leader 15.6.13 Help Countryside Aliance map phone reception rates (story)
Eagle Radio 14.6.13 Rural Surrey and Hampshire 'forgotten by mobile networks' (story)
Burton Mail 13.6.13 MP hopeful mobile phone app will get good reception Written by RICH GUTTRIDGE - AN MP is urging people in the region to help provide the Government with a fair reflection of mobile phone signals… With broadband speeds in rural areas a hot topic at the moment, North West Leicestershire MP Andrew Bridgen called on people to do their bit for the campaign… (story)
Rutland & Stamford Mercury 12.6.13 Survey on phone signal launched (story)
Bourne Local 12.6.13 Survey on phone signal launched (story)
Strathspey & Badenoch Herald 12.6.13 Smart phones users in Highlands asked to help plot signal map - Smart phone users in the strath are being urged to back a new project to map phone phone signals in the area…. (story)
Orcadian 12.6.13 MP encouraging Orkney folk to back mobile coverage campaign - Northern Isles MP Alistair Carmichael is encouraging local people to get involved with a new Countryside Alliance campaign designed to create a mobile coverage map… (story)
Heart FM 11.6.13 Mobile Signal 'Not-Spots' Targeted – People in rural Norfolk and Suffolk are being urged to help improve mobile phone signals…. (story)
Slough & South Berkshire Observer 10.6.13 Countryside Alliance launches campaign for better mobile phone reception - COUNTRY callers are being urged to join a campaign to fight for the same strength mobile phone signal as townies…. (story)
Matlock Mercury 9.6.13 Plea for phone detectives in the Dales - The Countryside Alliance is asking people in rural areas to become phone detectives this summer to help them map real phone reception rates across the UK…. (story)
Bicester Advertiser 9.6.13 Group calls for firms to be phone detectives - The Countryside Alliance is calling on rural businesses across the Advertiser and Review region to become phone detectives this summer… (story)
Dorset Echo 9.6.13 MP backing phone campaign - North Dorset MP Bob Walter is signing up to help improve the phone signal in his constituency… (story)
Western Morning News 8.6.13 Poor mobile phone coverage is holding back business in Devon and Cornwall By Phil Goodwin - Rural businesses risk being left behind by a "smartphone revolution" as poor mobile phone reception continues to blight the countryside… The Countryside Alliance wants farmers to become telephone "detectives" by downloading software to their phones and tablet computers which can measure the strength of signals… (story)
Western Morning News 8.6.13 No joke that mobile phone calls in West end in 'hello?' - The Westcountry is famous for many things. Its brilliant beaches, magnificent moorland scenery and fabulous food. But there is one thing about the region that infuriates just about everyone who lives here, travels here or tries to do business here... the inconsistent and often non-existent mobile telephone signal…. there is £150 million available from Government for infrastructure investment and the phone companies themselves are not short of funds to invest. Let's make sure, with the help of this campaign, that at least some of that cash is spent here. (story)
Newcastle Chronicle 7.6.13 North East: Phone map help needed - The Countryside Alliance is asking people in the North East’s rural areas to become “phone detectives” this summer and help map how strong signal reception really is… (story)
Shropshire Star 7.6.13 Shropshire callers urged to report on mobile phone signals - People living in rural areas across Shropshire and Mid Wales have been asked to become phone detectives this summer to help map the real reception rates across the UK…. (story)
Guide & Gazette 7.6.13 MP wants fairer access for mobiles - Angus MP Mike Weir is backing a move by the Countryside Alliance, who are asking people to become ‘phone detectives this summer…. (story)
East Anglian Daily Times 7.6.13 Bury St Edmunds: MP calls for reception checks on rural phone signals and mobile internet speeds - A west Suffolk MP has backed a campaign to help map phone reception and mobile internet speeds in Suffolk. The Countryside Alliance is asking people to download the free RootMetrics app on to their smartphones and use it while at home or on the move…. David Ruffley, MP for Bury St Edmunds, said: “Everybody pays the same rates for their phone packages, but they don’t all receive the same level of reception… (story)
Stroud News & Journal 7.6.13 Help the Countryside Alliance search for phone signals - The Countryside Alliance is asking people in rural areas to become phone detectives this summer and help us map real phone reception rates across the UK…. (story)
Gloucestershire Echo 6.6.13 Mobile signals - THE Countryside Alliance is asking people in rural areas to become phone detectives this summer and help them map phone reception rates across Gloucestershire. They are searching for evidence to ensure people living in the countryside are not forgotten by mobile phone companies. Anyone wishing to help can download the free RootMetrics app onto their smartphone or tablet and use it while they are at home as well as while they are out and about… (story)
Bury Free Press 5.6.13 Bury St Edmunds MP David Ruffley is urging people to join in a Countryside Alliance campaign to map true rural mobile phone reception… (story)
Scottish Farmer 30.5.13 In search of a better phone signal - SICK OF ending every mobile conversation with "Hello, hello, are you still there"? Then answer the Countryside Alliance's appeal for phone signal detectives this summer, and help support its lobby for better rural mobile phone services… All you have to do to take part is download a purpose-made free app onto your smartphone, which will test the strength of your signal and automatically record the result…. (story)
Ipswich Star 20.5.13 Suffolk: App launched to check on mobile phone reception in rural areas - Matt Stott - People worried about mobile phone reception and mobile internet speeds in Suffolk are being urged to take part in a survey mapping rural reception. The Countryside Alliance, which aims to improve rural life, is appealing for the public’s help in improving the issue of reception for residents. And by downloading an app on to your smartphone and using it to test the reception wherever you go, mobile phone users can help the charity plot the best and worst places in the countryside… (story)

Sun 10.7.13 ‘I was mauled by a fox as I sat on the loo’ - A MAN has told of his horror at being attacked by a fox while he sat on the TOILET… (story)
Telegraph 9.7.13 Man mauled by fox while on the lavatory - A man suffered a suspected broken wrists, cuts and bruises after a fox sneaked into his home and disturbed him while he ws on the lavatory. By Daniel Johnson and agencies - Anthony Schofield, 49, leapt off his downstairs lavatory after the fox poked its nose round the door but was then bitten as he tried to chase it off. The carpenter then gave chase round his living room as the fox grabbed his 14-year-old rescue cat Jessie by the neck and bit his partner Tanny Chapple, 35, on the finger… (story)
News Shopper 9.7.13 Catford fox horror for man on toilet By Sarah Trotter - A CATFORD man was driven potty after being attacked by a fox which burst in on him as he sat on the toilet. Anthony Schofield claims he was quietly going about his business in the little boys’ room on July 1 when the mangy creature strutted in before mauling him, his partner and his pet cat…. He was treated at hospital for cuts and bruises while his 14-year-old rescue cat Jessie sustained facial injuries and is still too scared to enter the living room. (story)

9.7.13

Oxford Times 9.7.13 Farmer counts the cost of hare coursing - DAIRY farmer DAVID Christensen has had recent problems with hare coursing on his Kingston Bagpuize farm… “The hare coursers cut the fence into a field with cattle in it and some of the cattle escaped…. (story)

Carlisle News & Star 9.7.13 Gamekeeper clubbed trapped buzzards to death - A gamekeeper who helped run a Cumbrian pheasant shooting club used a fence-post to batter to death two birds of prey. A judge was shown sickening video footage of the moments when 64-year-old Colin Burne killed two buzzards which he found in a cage trap intended for crows in a forest near Penrith… Peter Kelly, prosecuting at Carlisle Magistrates’ Court, said a member of the public walking in Whinfell Forest, near to the Center Parcs holiday resort, came upon a crow trap cage in which there were three live buzzards. That person was concerned enough to report the matter to the RSPB and they investigated…. (story)

The Sentinel 9.7.13 Wilde writer had his lines crossed - PLEASE allow me to bring a little enlightenment into John Barnett's world. First of all the unusual 'activity' you witnessed at Hanley Forest Park is called angling… Your quote from the pen of Oscar Wilde was not, as you stated, aimed at anglers, it was in fact to the barbaric participants of foxhunting…. ARTHUR DICKENS Burslem (letter)
The Sentinel 5.7.13 There's a catch with their hobby - I HAVE seen something unusual at Hanley Forest Park. It was a group of grown men dragging fish along the water with a length of nylon line which had a hook attached to it which in turn was attached to the fish's top lip…. Not unlike children pulling the legs off a daddylonglegs in the past… JOHN BARNETT Audley (letter)

Dorset Echo 9.7.13 County set to be first for badger cull By James Tourgout - DORSET is set to become one of the first counties for a badger cull if they are rolled out next year…. ELIZABETH James from the Dorset Mammal Group said that there were plans to vaccinate badgers in Dorset… (story)

Guardian 9.7.13 Morrissey donates Channel 4 payout to Peta campaign against foie gras - Singer funds adverts attacking Fortnum & Mason with £10,000 payment for broadcaster's unauthorised use of Smiths song - John Reynolds - Morrissey has donated £10,000 paid by Channel 4 for the unauthorised use of a Smiths song to fund a campaign attacking Fortnum & Mason for selling foie gras… (story)
Retail Bulletin 9.7.13 New ad against Fortnum & Mason to be funded by TV gaff - Morrissey donates his settlement from Channel 4's unauthorised use of Smiths' song to PETA to fight the store's foie gras sales. A new PETA ad highlighting the cruelty behind every tin of foie gras sold by Fortnum & Mason will be funded entirely by Channel 4 after the broadcaster used a song by The Smiths in advertisements for Gordon Ramsay's ‘Christmas Cookalong Live’ back in 2011 and without the singer's permission… (story)

The Drum 9.7.13 Those who wear animal skins are just as guilty at those who kill for pelts, graphic PETA ad suggests - People who buy and wear the skins of exotic animals are just as bad as those who kill the animals, PETA has suggested in a new series of graphic ads… (story)

BBC News Online 9.7.13 Circus animal ban goes too far, say MPs - The government's plan for a total ban on animals in travelling circuses in England "goes too far", MPs have said… The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee suggested creatures such as camels, zebras and snakes could still take part in entertainments. But it decided that lions, tigers and elephants no longer "have a place"…. (story)
Guardian 9.7.13 Plan to ban wild animals in travelling circuses 'goes too far' - MPs scrutinising draft bill say species such as camels and zebras could be exempted, drawing dismay from animal welfare campaigners - Karl Mathiesen - Government plans to ban the use of wild animals in travelling circuses go "too far", according to a committee of MPs scrutinising the proposed legislation… Animal Defenders International (ADI) president Jan Creamer said the recommendations ignored animal welfare concerns and added that constant relocation created intolerable conditions for all species of wild animal… (story)
Independent 9.7.13 Snakes, zebras, camels, raccoons and reindeers should be excluded from circus animal ban, say MPs - Tom Bawden - Government proposals to ban all wild animals from travelling circuses should be watered down to allow zebras, camels, reindeer and snakes to stay on the road, MPs have recommended…. (story)

8.7.13

Western Daily Press 8.7.13 Hunt master 'exonerated' over claims By TRISTAN CORK - A West hunt master has described being monitored by anti-hunt campaigners as "very unpleasant" and like "being stalked", as a prosecution against him for breaking the ban hunt was dropped. Brian Palmer, the joint-master of the Quantock Staghounds, was facing a charge of hunting a deer with dogs, after the Crown Prosecution Service took on the case following an Avon and Somerset police inquiry. Last week, however, the CPS told Mr Palmer and the hunt that it was dropping the case against him due to a 'lack of evidence'… (story)
Horse & Hound 27.6.13 Unlawful hunting charge dropped due to lack of evidence - A charge of unlawful hunting against Quantock Staghounds joint-master Brian Palmer was dropped last week (25 June) — due to a lack of evidence…. “I am of course relieved to be exonerated,” said Mr Palmer. “But being stalked by these self-appointed hunt monitors is very unpleasant, as are the repeated allegations against the hunt.”… (story)
Western Morning News 26.6.13 Charge dropped against Staghounds joint-master - Charges of unlawful hunting against a Somerset hunt master have been dropped, the Countryside Alliance has revealed. The joint-master of the Quantock Staghounds, Brian Palmer was told yesterday that charges had been dropped due to a lack of evidence, the campaign group claimed. The case against Mr Palmer had been based on surveillance of the hunt by protest group the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS)…. (story)

Scotsman 8.7.13 Conserving Scotland’s birds of prey - The Scottish Raptor Study Groups (SRSGs) agree with the Scottish Gamekeepers Association chairman Alex Hogg that land management of the right sort can contribute to golden eagle conservation. SRSGs are intrigued by Mr Hogg’s remark that his members in the keepered grouse areas of east and central Scotland have identified at least 55 active eagle nests still in place since 2003… Patrick Stirling-Aird Scottish Raptor Study Groups Old Kippenross Dunblane
Irvine Inglis (Letters, 6 July), complains that the photograph used to illustrate an article on gamekeepers was disgraceful, claiming that most urban people do not understand the difficult jobs undertaken by gamekeepers. What Mr Inglis fails to understand is that the photograph is a perfect image of how many Scots see gamekeepers…. It will take the cessation of illegal activities – and not a photograph – to change the public’s perception. Logan D Steele Bridgewater Avenue Auchterarder (letters)

Western Daily Press 8.7.13 Has the badger cull started already? In reply to the letter "Shooting is a proven method of control" by SD Freke (Western Daily Press, June 26), I ask what experience has anyone in the British Isles of shooting, in his words "free running badgers", at night?... M J Haines Cirencester, Gloucestershire (letter)

Lincolnshire Echo 8.7.13 EDL Skegness anti-halal demo - A planned protest against Halal slaughter in Skegness will now be organised by the Skegness division of the English Defence League. The protest, on July 27, was originally planned by the East Anglian Patriots, the group who protested against the planned mosque in Lincoln on June 8… But, the following day, another message was posted saying the local division of the EDL would take on the running of the protest…. (story)

7.7.13

Sunday Express 7.7.13 Winter's a winner - SUNDAY EXPRESS Environment Editor Stuart Winter yesterday was named Journalist of the Year by the League Against Cruel Sports…. (story)

COUNTRYSIDE ALLIANCE RURAL HOUSING LETTER
Sussex Express 7.7.13 Rural affordable homes needed - Barney White-Spunner Executive chairman, Countryside Alliance, London (letter)
Leicester Mercury 29.6.13 Homing in on a rural dilemma Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman, Countryside Alliance. (letter)
Yorkshire Post 24.6.13 Home truths on living in the country - From: Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman, Countryside Alliance, Kennington, London. THE news, from the National Housing Federation, that the number of people aged between 30 and 44 who live in rural parts of Yorkshire has dropped by nearly 10 per cent in the past decade is proof that we need more affordable homes in rural areas…. (letter)
Hull Daily Mail 21.6.13 More affordable houses needed in rural areas - I WRITE in response to your story "High prices 'forcing young people out of rural communities'", (June 14). The news, from the National Housing Federation, that the number of people aged between 30 and 44 who live in rural areas has dropped by nearly 9 per cent in the past decade is proof that we need more affordable homes in rural areas…. Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman of the Countryside Alliance (story)

Mail on Sunday 7.7.13 Maddest waste of money since Concorde: HS2 will destroy our countryside and cost up to £100 billion... and only first-class passengers and lobbyists will benefit By SIMON JENKINS - Nobody seems to love HS2, and with good reason. It is by far the largest, and possibly the craziest, infrastructure project in British history…. The railway has opponents as diverse as the Institute of Economic Affairs and the Socialist Workers Party, the Economist magazine and the environmentalist George Monbiot, the Engineering Employers Federation, the RAC, the Countryside Alliance, the Taxpayers Alliance and wildlife trusts galore…. (story)

Sunday Express 7.7.13 Boycott Pamplona’s savage bull run, revellers told - STAG and hen parties are being urged to boycott the Pamplona Bull Run to help drive one of Europe’s sickest spectacles off the tourist calendar, writes Stuart Winter… As the festival, which was made famous by writer Ernest Hemingway, began yesterday it was condemned by the League Against Cruel Sports, which has released a new film to support its anti-bullfighting campaign… (story)

Scotland on Sunday 7.7.13 Anger over Chinese drug firm selling bear bile By BILLY BRIGGS - A CHINESE pharmaceutical company that wants to build business links in Scotland has been condemned by animal rights groups for using bile from bears’ gall bladders in its products. The Beijing headquarted Tong Ren Tang Group is one of ten Chinese companies due to meet with Scottish business leaders in Edinburgh tomorrow… (story)

6.7.13

Western Daily Press 6.7.13 Hunt monitors let down by the CPS - As one of the law abiding hunt monitors, referred to by Kit Davidson of Animal Aid, (Daily Press Letters, July 3) who had their camcorders wrenched from them by three abusive and threatening men, like Kit Davidson, I would also like a reply to the question: What right does one citizen have to confiscate property from another?... We were let down by the Crown Prosecution Service. The three thugs responsible, laughed and jeered at us as they drove out of the court car park, blowing me kisses as they went. No wonder they laughed as they had got away with an insignificant punishment for serious and vicious acts. Helen Weeks West Coker, Somerset (letter)
Western Daily Press 28.6.13 Gamekeepers fined for threats to monitors By Tina Rowe - An incident in which two hunt monitors were threatened, sworn at and had their camcorders wrenched from their hands ended in court appearances for three hunt supporters. Gamekeepers Lee Mabey and Lewis Longstaff and unemployed carpenter Paul Bennett, all supporters of the Dorset-based Cattistock Hunt, admitted using threatening words or behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress, when they appeared before magistrates in Weymouth yesterday. But charges of theft against Mabey and Bennett were withdrawn after magistrates were told that the men maintained that they had simply confiscated the camcorders and planned to hand them in to a police station. The three were each given one-year conditional discharges and ordered to pay £85 towards the prosecution costs… (story)

Observer 6.7.13 Secret badger shoots pose 'a risk to public safety' - Despite warnings by police and campaigners over dangers to the public, Defra is against releasing a risk assessment of culls - Damian Carrington - The government has refused to publish risk assessments of danger to the public during England's imminent night-time badger shoots because doing so "could have an adverse affect upon the health and safety of the public", the Observer can reveal… George Kearton, from campaign group Badger Rescue and Vaccination Everywhere, who made the FOI requests, said: "In the cull zones there is no information available locally about where the actual shooting is to take place… (story)

Western Daily Press 6.7.13 Why not test cull badgers for TB? In reply to Mr John Tuck (Daily Press Letters June 23) I would like to confirm that the illegally blocked badger setts, were indeed reported to the police, RSPCA and LACS… Only 50 per cent of cattle are tested annually for bovine TB, leaving five million to potentially spread disease… The number of countries who have successfully eradicated bovine TB by culling wildlife is none. No badgers shot will be tested for bovine TB. I ask why not – have they something to hide? MJ Haines Cirencester, Gloucestershire (letter)

Western Daily Press 6.7.13 RSPCA needs to supervise this cull - I see the Government has now decided that everything must be killed, or neutered, poor old badger. I hope this is supervised by the RSPCA or a vet after seeing the inhumane way it was carried out in the past… N Vizor Malmesbury, Wiltshire (letter)

5.7.13

Gloucestershire Echo 5.7.13 County shooting club members meet with MEP - MEMBERS of a shooting organisation from Gloucestershire met with the county's MEP on Wednesday. British Association for Shooting and Conservation (BASC) members met Julie Girling, MEP representing the south west, along with Gloucester MP Richard Graham for talks on shooting issues… (story)

Derbyshire Times 5.7.13 Report criticises rural broadband efforts - A new report has been release today (Friday) which is highly critical of the Government’s promise to provide rural areas, like the Dales, with fast broadband…. Countryside Alliance executive chairman Barney White-Spunner said: “For a long time we have known this strategy is not making the inroads it needs to make to ensure that the UK has the best superfast broadband network in Europe by 2015… (story)

The Orcadian 5.7.13 Isles parliamentarians announce Orkney Digital Forum date - Northern Isles MP Alistair Carmichael and Orkney MSP Liam McArthur have announced that the Northern Isles Digital Forum will take place on July 26 in Kirkwall. The forum will be held at the St Magnus Centre from 1pm to 3pm. Speaking at the event will be director of BT Scotland Brendan Dick, director of Highlands and Islands Enterprise’s digital policy Stuart Robertson and Jamie Stewart from the Countryside Alliance…. (story)

Shields Gazette 5.7.13 Family pet killed in horror fox attack - A DEVASTATED animal lover is warning other pet owners to be on their guard as his cat was killed by a fox near his home in South Shields. The man, who does not want to be named, says his 18-year-old cat, Chloe, was ‘part of the family’ until she was savaged to death on Sunday night… (story)

Argus 5.7.13 Live and let live as far as foxes are concerned - I write following your report about a “foxy intruder” (The Argus, July 1). You can see clearly in the photograph you printed that it is a young fox cub… Live and let live – there is room for all in this world. Paul Robards, Griffiths Avenue, Lancing (letter)

Gloucestershire Echo 5.7.13 Protesters 'not surprised' by plans to roll out badger cull By LAURA CHURCHILL - A WIDER roll-out of the controversial badger cull being piloted in Gloucestershire is among the preferred options to stamp out TB in cattle within 25 years… Jeanne Berry from Gloucestershire Against Badger Shooting said she wasn't surprised by the Government's strategy… "The vaccination being 10 years away is a red herring and nonsense from a blood thirsty government that wants to reduce the numbers of badgers." (story)

Leicester Mercury 5.7.13 What is the truth behind bovine TB-infected meat? - Defra said: "Bovine TB is a threat to human health" to justify killing badgers which, they say, help spread the disease between cattle. It has emerged that the Government has sold millions of pounds worth of meat from bTB-infected cattle in the past six years. The Food Standards Agency says bTB is not a threat to human health. Have I missed something?... Elizabeth Allison, Aylestone. (letter)

Derby Telegraph 5.7.13 We were persecuted by RSPCA, say pair cleared of cat cruelty charges - By Martin Naylor - A COUPLE cleared of animal cruelty charges say they feel they were "persecuted" by the RSPCA. Dean and Diane Webb said they were forced to move abroad to get away from the "constant stress" of an upcoming court case in which magistrates were told that 33 cats and kittens were found in "an appalling state."… (story)

Newbury & Thatcham Chronicle 5.7.13 Bullfight campaigner plans naked protest Reporter: Tanya Haji - AN Upper Bucklebury woman plans to lie in a coffin in Spain tomorrow, wearing little more than bull horns as part of a protest against the country’s bullfighting traditions. Hope Carveth, aged 20, a former pupil of St Bartholomew’s School, Newbury and The Downs school, Compton, is joining in the protest organised by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) UK, and Spanish group AnimaNaturalis…. (story)

4.7.13

Cambridge News 4.7.13 Outspoken wildlife crusader Robin Page is back with a new book Written by EMMA HIGGINBOTHAM - Outspoken wildlife crusader Robin Page is back with a new book: called Notes from a Disappearing Countryside, it’s sure to send feathers flying and, as he tells EMMA HIGGINBOTHAM, he wouldn’t have it any other way…. Now he’s back with his 33rd book, Notes from a Disappearing Countryside - an entertaining tirade against the urbanisation of our area and beyond, and his frustration that no-one seems to be doing anything to stop it… (story)

Scotsman 4.7.13 4 Scots gamekeepers expelled for wildlife offences By FRANK URQUHART - THE Scottish Gamekeepers Association has expelled four of the organisation’s members for wildlife offences, it was revealed today. The organisation, which represents all gamekeepers, stalkers, ghillies, wildlife managers and rangers in Scotland, has taken the ultimate sanction against the four unidentified members in recent weeks. And today Alex Hogg, the chairman of the SGA, called for “responsible game managers” to be given a greater role in eagle conservation in Scotland… (story)

Leigh Journal 4.7.13 Glad greyhound stadium closing - REGARDING the article about the greyhound stadium closing, I for one at least am glad…. CHER JARVIS Linnet Drive Leigh (letter)
Leigh Journal 4.7.13 ‘Tantamount to animal cruelty’ - I WAS appaled about the article seemingly supporting greyhound racing at Westhoughton. This so-called ‘sport’ is tantamount to animal cruelty and should be banned in its entirety… SUE LEES Bond St Leigh (letter)
Leigh Journal 4.7.13 Greyhounds are cared for - I DO not own a greyhound and have no involvement in the running of the greyhound track at Westhoughton but I have recently been to a few of the race meetings held there… When I visited the dog track I witnessed nothing to give me concern for the dogs’ welfare, in fact quite the opposite…. Adele Guider (letter)

West Briton 4.7.13 Bovine TB seal 'bitten by badger' - THE first case in the world of a seal with bovine tuberculosis (BTB) has been discovered in Cornwall. Staff at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary at Gweek raised the alarm after the pup, named after action film hero Chuck Norris, failed to respond to antibiotics and developed a cough… (story)
Western Morning News 27.6.13 Seal bitten by badger dies from bovine TB - Scientists believe they have discovered the first ever case in the world of a seal infected with bovine TB – and thought to have been bitten by a badger. The seal pup was found washed up off the coast of Cornwall last year and taken to the Cornish Seal Sanctuary at Gweek… (story)
BBC News Online 26.6.13 Wounded seal on coast had TB from badger bite, vet says - A wounded seal pup that washed up on a Cornish beach was put down after contracting bovine TB from a badger bite, vets said…. (story)

Western Daily Press 4.7.13 Man is the biggest danger to wildlife - I write in in response to the letter by T Gardiner. No predator in the animal kingdom hunts its prey to the point of extinction… The decline in hedgehogs is due to the motor car, slug pellets and loss of habitat…. Andrew Williams - West Country Badger Patrol Group (letter)

Somerset Guardian 4.7.13 Badger cull is political - At least we know where the Liberal Democrats stand on the badger cull; they are in favour of it. That is obvious from the fact that the man in charge of the cull is the Lib Dem Minister of State for Agriculture and MP for Somerton and Frome David Heath... Robert Craig Press Office All The South Party (letter)

3.7.13

Horse & Hound 3.7.13 ‘Champion of rural life’ killed in car accident - Warm tributes have been paid to pointing supporter and Pendle Forest and Craven joint-master Tom Bannister, who has died in a road accident at the age of 48… He was master of Stowe Beagles while at school and studied at the Royal Agricultural College before joining his family on the Coniston estate, where he ran the hotel and opened the farm shop and fishery… (story)

Kidderminster Shuttle 3.7.13 Worried anglers insist Keith the seal must go By Catherine Phillips, Reporter - FRESH calls have been made to remove a seal from the river Severn amid fears it is affecting fish stocks. Several fisherman have contacted the Angling Trust worried about the impact the seal, known as Keith, is having on fish stocks in the Severn and Teme rivers… (story)

Exeter Express & Echo 3.7.13 TB in seals - I WAS not surprised at TB being found in a seal – TB was found in New Zealand seals and sealions 15 years ago… M Hancox Stroud, Glos (letter)
Western Daily Press 1.7.13 TB found in seal doesn't surprise me - I'm not surprised at your article of TB found in a seal (Daily Press June 27). TB was found in New Zealand seals and sea lions 15 years ago… M Hancox Stroud, Gloucestershire (letter)

Wilts & Gloucestershire Standard 3.7.13 Cull case falls apart in detail - IN YOUR report on the upcoming badger cull (Standard, June 21), you describe it as 'a pilot scheme to determine whether culling can eradicate bovine tuberculosis in cattle'. How very reasonable it all sounds - until you look at the detail… G E Purser Clapton-on-the-Hill (letter)

Bournemouth Echo 3.7.13 Badger cull is just a farce - NOW that we have been made aware that the government (Defra) has been selling meat from something like 28,000 carcasses infected with bovine tuberculosis… we can be assured that the planned badger cull is just one political farce. ROBERT TUCK, Pardy’s Hill, Corfe Mullen (letter)

Leicester Mercury 3.7.13 The dangers of animal cruelty - I know that Fidget isn't the first cat to be shot and, sadly, probably won't be the last ("Appeal after pet cat shot with airgun", Mercury, June 24)…. , it is worth mentioning that a recent report found animal harm videos are the most commonly viewed inappropriate content watched by under-16s online… Elizabeth Allison, Aylestone. (letter)

2.7.13

Malvern Gazette 2.7.13 Charity clay shoot IN reply to Mr Bee’s letter dated Friday, June 21… The shoot organisers ensure all necessary procedures are followed and notifications given to the relevant organisations eg; Police and the British Association for Shooting and Conservation. Secondly with regard to Mr Bee walking “the footpath”, we would advise him to consult a map to ensure he knows the correct route to walk. He would then be able to see that there is not a “network” of public footpaths in this particular field… JENNI HORNE Charity Clay Shoot secretary (letter)
Malvern Gazette 2.7.13 Know your rights - I COULD not agree more with Adrian Bee when he commented that walkers have rights to walk on public footpaths, but with rights come responsibilities. As a volunteer helper on the charity clay pigeon shoot Mr Bee refers to, I would point out there is no footpath between the two stiles – as the OS map clearly shows… S C KENT Leigh Sinton (letter)
Malvern Gazette 21.6.13 It is our right - I took my dog on our usual walk, the same route we have walked for the last two years crossing a field near Wold Farm, Stiffords Bridge. Someone was holding a clay pigeon shoot in a field with a network of footpaths and four stiles connecting them… I was approached by someone telling me to walk around the field on a different route. It’s about time people accepted that walkers have a right to use footpaths… It should be pointed out to them that they have no right to force people to walk dogs on a lead, particularly when there isn’t any livestock around… ADRIAN BEE Cradle (letter)

Derbyshire Times 2.7.13 Leave badgers alone: Cull is just a cheap option - In response to the article in last week’s Derbyshire Times, I am outraged that MPs in our area have supported the trials to shoot free-running badgers in the UK… Melissa Rose Whitwell (letter)

Leicester Mercury 2.7.13 Elizabeth Allison's comments ("The best way to support badgers", Mailbox, June 29) makes my case in a way that we have come to expect from her… She knows very well that Asda, Waitrose and Marks and Spencers have not said "they will not sell milk from these areas" ( those involved in the badger cull). They have just stated they do not have suppliers in those areas… Callum Collier, Leicester. (letter)
Leicester Mercury 29.6.13 H. Edwards wishes to boycott brands of dairy produce and beef produced in Somerset and Gloucestershire to support badgers… However, the most effective way to support badgers is to reduce consumption, or better still, abstain from dairy produce and beef… Elizabeth Allison, Aylestone. (letter)

1.7.13

Cumnock Chronicle 1.7.13 Shooters group welcomes moves to reduce crime against birds of prey - A statement of intent from Scotland's Minister for Environment and Climate Change to improve the investigation and enforcement of crimes against birds of prey has been welcomed by the country's largest shooting organisation, the British Association for Shooting and Conservation, Scotland (BASC Scotland)…. (story)

Argus 1.7.13 Foxy intruder to Brighton home stole dog’s toys and stunned owner - A brazen fox swaggered into a Brighton home – and sat in the lounge staring at the gobsmacked owner…. (story)

Western Daily Press 1.7.13 Lies and deceit to support persecution - If a person's aim is to have a quarry species to chase, torment, bait and kill for fun then they will use any means to do so. Facts will mean nothing to them unless it fits their agenda. The same goes for those pushing for a badger cull, factory farming, ritual-slaughter, GM, nuclear power and outdated fossil-fuel technology… D Thomas by email (letter)

Western Daily Press 1.7.13 Badgers blamed for man-made problem - The NFU spin line before the badger cull was agreed was "have you even seen a grown man cry" over his lost cattle… It is a man-made farming problem and the badger is simply the scapegoat of the NFU. Graham Forsyth Chard, Somerset (letter)

Southern Daily Echo 1.7.13 Alternatives to testing on animals not pursued - CHRIS MAGEE asserts (Daily Echo June 10) that the law (1986) forbids animal research if alternatives are available, but in practice this rarely happens… MRS SHEILA CLAYTON, Southampton (letter)
Southern Daily Echo 24.6.13 Animal testing isn’t needed anymore - I MUST respond to the letter from C Magee who, I understand, is the media and public affairs manager at Understanding Animal Research, which is funded by the contract research and pharmaceutical industry… Medical science has certainly progressed without animal experiments, and sometimes in spite of misleading animal research - JAN CREAMER, chief executive, National Anti-Vivisection Society (letter)

Sheffield Star 1.7.13 VIDEO - Sheffield RSPCA Cash crisis by Nick Ward - Sheffield’s biggest animal rescue centre faces a mounting financial crisis which could result in more mistreated and abandoned pets being destroyed…. But staff at the centre, which costs £2,000 per day to run, are warning they may have to scale back their operation due to a fall in financial donations… Centre manager Stella White explained that, due to lack of funds, the centre, which opened four years ago, has never yet operated to its full capacity… “We are a standalone charity and receive no funding from the national RSPCA…” (story)

Argus 1.7.13 Consider all creatures before mowing your grass verge - It’s a shame that people such as Colin Mann (The Argus, June 24) can generate so much anger about grass verges… our wildlife has a right to life, too – or would he simply prefer a more sterile world where the only animals are those we keep to kill in order to fill our seemingly bottomless stomachs?.... Glen Deeprose, Johnson Bank, Brighton (letter)

Leicester Mercury 1.7.13 Should children not get full story about farming? - I agree with Phil Dews that children's lack of knowledge about food production could be addressed by schools… Children should know that all animals are capable of suffering and feel pain, yet many intensively-reared animals are denied fresh air, proper exercise or the freedom to behave naturally… Elizabeth Allison, Aylestone (letter)

Yorkshire Post 1.7.13 Terrible plight of caged hens From: Aled Jones, Mount Crescent, Bridlington, East Yorkshire. AS time passes, we hear less and less about the tragic plight of battery hens and of the heart-wrenching statistics involved…. The battery egg industry is ethically and nutritionally unacceptable. Unhappy hens produce unhealthy eggs, of that there is no doubt. (letter)