Hunting tradition continues at Boxing Day meets in Buckinghamshire

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111343009
Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111343009

The hunting tradition continued in Buckinghamshire on Boxing Day with events in Winslow and Cholesbury.

Hunting is a controversial issue, and since the Hunting Act 2004, meets are no longer allowed to chase a fox, only a scent trail, or risk breaking the law and being prosecuted.

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111526009

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111526009

But this year two members of the Kimblewick Hunt, which met in Cholesbury on Boxing Day, were charged and found guilty of trapping a fox, and then radioing the rest of the hunt to tell them to head over so they could set the animal free.

Ian Parkinson and Mark Vincent received suspended prison sentences in November.

It is not known whether either of the prosecuted hunt members were present at the Cholesbury meet.

A separate hunting event took place in Winslow on Boxing Day with the Bicester Hunt and Whaddon Chase meeting at Winslow Show Field.

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111506009

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111506009

While there is no suggestion that either hunt was illegally chasing foxes, national charity the League Against Cruel Sports has called for the Hunting Act to be strengthened further.

Chris Luffingham, director of campaigns at the charity, said: “To pull a fox out from a safe place by its tail and release it in front of a pack of hounds is inconceivable.

“The deliberate suffering caused to the fox demonstrates a blatant disregard for the legislation which was put in place to protect British wildlife.

“Therefore, there is a clear need to strengthen the Hunting Act, including the introduction of custodial sentences.”

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111423009

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111423009

He added: “These figures show that illegal fox hunting is widespread throughout Britain, and not just committed by a small number of miscreant hunts.

“The hunts still do it because they know there are loopholes they can use to exploit the law, and just brush off fox deaths as ‘accidents’.

“To properly stop this activity it is time that we stand united against hunting and offer wildlife the protection it deserves – urging our politicians to strengthen the ban.”

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Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111401009

Bicester Hunt with Whaddon Chase host the annual Winslow Boxing Day Meet at Winslow Show Field PNL-191227-111401009