Three Counties Hunt Saboteurs celebrated End-of-Season(!) with a visit to the Ross Harriers.
The day started with an hour-long conversation with Huntsman Lee Peters (some interesting stuff there re: badger digging, human overpopulation and which sab groups to avoid if we don’t want to get hurt as well…) followed by their midday meet at the Tump Inn in Wormelow.
Paul Standen and his mate “Jack” arrived on their quad to sit in front of our van (but wasn’t quite quick enough on the ignition when we drove off behind him… sorry Paul!) and our 2 vehicles (and 6 sabs) split once they began to cover the hunt from 2 sides.
Needless to say, end-of-season madness did kick in as the day progressed. Staying in a rather small area, the hunt picked up on (and lost) a number of hares, some of whom escaped with no help, other chases we managed to intervene with to give the hares a few extra seconds to get away. A fox was run to ground in a badger sett which was blocked up and there was a lot of holloaing, pointing and not-so-sneaky radio-use.
Following a couple of angry farmers and a tractor, a sab in a hedge, Lee Peters “accidentally” almost riding a sab over (with some interesting use of a whip) and a bottle of engine oil thrown over the van windscreen and into the face of the driver and passenger, a hunt supporter attempted to enter the van and a sab was pushed over the bonnet with an older gentleman threatened by another.
Supporters seemed to want 2 things: the male sab to start a fight and to intimidate the women. They got neither. This report makes it sound far more eventful than it feels in our memories…
Investigations are pending.
An evening in A&E looking greasy and a night in a police station (still a bit greasy) followed by a bag of greasy chips meant 3C arrived home around 4.30am – our EOS celebration cup of tea ended up being a quickly-downed cup of chamomile in bed. Stylish!
We say goodbye to the ever-lively Danny Burton (son of ‘Stephen’ who you may find at the Hursley Hambledon drinking coffee) who leaves us to go be a kennelman in Hampshire and who is sad that he will have to work even when the hounds are out hunting. Our hearts bleed for you Danny Look out for his face in the county.
It was a pleasure to have Bristol out with us on Saturday and Lee Peters did not seem happy. Three Counties Hunt Saboteurs ran into him outside the kennels and, despite some dangerous driving and illegal road blocks, our little car managed to keep up with him all the way to the meet.
Our 2 pairs of foot-sabs were in an out of the vehicles all day, with one managing to avoid the 2 incidents that took place throughout the day and helping a couple of hares that sprinted past.
The ever-charming Lee did not seem best pleased at last week’s video of his hounds chasing the fox and his supporters (who usually check out this page quite regularly) claimed not to have seen it.
Solidarity and love to all the groups who were attacked and hurt this last weekend (or indeed before then!) It’s end-of-season madness time…
and from Bristol Hunt Saboteurs
A return visit to the charming Ross Harriers today, who were hunting just outside of Much Marcle. Their huntsman, Lee Peters, burst a few blood vessels upon our arrival looking angry even by his standards.
After lots of personal threats and some dicking around by some of the followers, he moved off with us close behind. Hares were put up all over the place with him encouraging his hounds on, with complete disregard of the law.
Sabs found themselves in a perfect position when hounds went into cry, only seconds behind a hare. With the use of citronella sprays and whips, sabs ensured that the hare got away to safety. This only added to the frustration of Peters who tried riding sabs down as a response.
Catching up with the hunt again we witnessed the hounds actively chasing a hare with only a few feet between them. We were too far away to intervene but luckily the hare managed to slip away from the hounds. A truly horrifying moment.
As we approached the hunt they were surrounding our vehicles on a road. At this point one of the tyres got slashed on our land rover and then the Harriers spearheaded by Peters launched an all out attack on sabs from both the vehicles and in the field. One female Sab is currently in hospital with head injuries and multiple others came away with battered and bruised.
Just goes to show that when a hunt have a hard time trying to kill animals they turn their aggression elsewhere. It doesn’t bother us, as we get to go home in the safe knowledge that no animals were killed by The Ross Harriers.
POWA Press Release 17th March – Otis Ferry, ‘celebrity’ son of rock star Bryan, pro-hunt activist and Joint Master of the South Shropshire Hunt has, agreed to pay very substantial damages to two female hunt monitors, Mrs. Helen Ghalmi, who is a Protect Our Wild Animals [POWA] Associate, and Mrs. Susan Grima, after a 4 year legal battle by them.
Ferry’s last-minute offers of settlement were made and accepted immediately before trial in civil court. Mrs. Ghalmi is to be paid £8,000 by Ferry and Mrs. Grima a similar amount.
Ferry and his co-defendant, a Heythrop rider named John Deutsch, had already been convicted in Crown Court, on 22-5-09, for attacking the two ladies in November 2007. Both men pleaded guilty to a public order offence.
They had originally been charged with robbery and assault, but the former charges were dropped after a claim that it was intended to return the items removed. However, a video camera which Ferry was accused of having taken has not been returned.
The ladies, however, felt that the sentences – Discharges and £350 fines – which the Judge ordered paid to them as compensation – were nowhere near adequate to reflect the gravity of the offences against them and the terror and trauma they had suffered. They consequently launched civil claims against both Ferry and Deutsch, which have only recently been concluded.
Mrs. Ghalmi and Mrs. Grima were monitoring the Heythrop Fox Hounds on 21-11-07 near Lower Swell, Gloucs, in order to collect evidence of any illegal hunting.
They stated that their car was overtaken and blocked in by a vehicle being driven by Deutsch in a country lane. Deutsch then stormed towards their vehicle shouting abuse at them and violently ripped out the passenger side-window, right next to Ms. Grima, causing the glass to explode into tiny fragments.
Otis Ferry, who was a guest-rider with the Heythrop that day, then arrived and, also shouting, joined in the attack on the ladies.
Mrs.Ghalmi says that he tried to pull her out of the car, snatched her video-camera and then wrested her keys from her hand, during which her arm and fingers were injured.
Ferry then made off with the camera on horseback and admits he later wiped the film. Police arrived soon after, by when both attackers had made off. They later found the car keys discarded by Ferry. Both ladies were terrified for their safety throughout the joint attack by Ferry and Deutsch.
Ferry’s last-minute settlement offer meant he did not have to attend Court, but Deutsch continued to contest the ladies’ claims. Delivering his judgement at Brentford County Court on 5-3-14, Circuit Judge H.H.J.Powles, QC said he found Deutsch’s evidence wholly incredible.
He stated that this was ‘an angry attack by a man who trapped them and made them fear for their safety’, noted his ‘indifference and lack of concern’ and concluded he had ‘deliberately lied to the Court’. He further stated of Ferry and Deutsch that ‘they acted together’ and ‘each is liable as much as the other.’
The ladies’ counsel, David Rivers of Old Square Chambers, has published a digest of the case online. They were also represented by Howe & Co, Solicitors, of Brentford.
Speaking of the attack and its aftermath Mrs. Ghalmi [right, talking to police] said:- “I am so relieved it is finally over. The judge has listened to the evidence and rightly concluded that this was a vicious attack carried out solely because we were monitoring the Heythrop Hunt and these two individuals took it upon themselves to try and get rid of us.
To be trapped in a confined space in the middle of no where while two men attacked us was a terrifying and distressing ordeal to say the least. It was a nasty cowardly act by these two men and they should be ashamed of themselves.
I just hope this sends out a clear message to all Hunts that we won’t tolerate this kind of aggression towards monitors anymore. It’s been an extremely long drawn out process but its been worth it to have it recognised at last just how awful an ordeal this was and that when you cause harm to another it is only right and just that you should be held accountable. On that day we experienced a real taste of what the poor foxes go through.”
Mrs. Grima said:-“I’m just relieved that its now finally over and I can try and move on with my life. As a result of the attack I have been left with severe migraines and they show no sign of stopping, for all I know I may suffer with them for the rest of my life.
I was left with PTSD and this got to the point where it prevented me from wanting to leave my home, I couldn’t even bring myself to go and visit my mother when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. What these men did was vicious and yet even after pleading guilty they chose to prolong the suffering by dragging this case on for so long, thankfully the judge saw right through the lies.”
Alan Kirby, POWA spokesman, added:- “This is very far from the first time that pro-hunting fanatic Otis Ferry has been in trouble with the law and/or has had serious accusations made against him and his Hunt. It is gratifying to see he and his companion being made to pay for this vicious attack on two defenceless women in an isolated location.
This was just one of many such attacks, some even more violent and terrifying, by hunters and hunt supporters on anti-hunt activists which occur with disturbing regularity and which the authorities rarely treat with the seriousness they deserve.”
POWAperson adds:- Otis Ferry’s brushes with the law and trouble he and his Hunt have got into include the following:-
Queen guitarist Brian May has written about how he came ‘close to death’ while supporting badger cull protesters in Gloucestershire.
Writing on his Save Me Facebook page Dr May describes the trial badger cull as ‘insane.’
Yesterday Defra insisted the trail cull was necessary and wasn’t designed to ‘wipe out badgers’ saying if we don’t act now to stop the spread of bovine TB, the consequences for farming would be devestating.
Beginning my day in Gloucestershire, there is a grim undercurrent of violence in the air. We came very close to death just now when a white 4 by 4 came careering towards us on the wrong side of the road. He was overtaking at about 90 mph, and had no way back into his lane. If we hadn’t braked hard, we and he would have instantaneously been mincemeat. Reminds you how delicate the life of a creature is. Reminds that for all our pretentions and arrogance, all the Human Race has managed to do is cover this planet with concrete and pollution, and wipe out 99 per cent of the other animals with which we used to share it.
It’s hard to be optimistic. And now we have a Government completely in bed with all those elements of society who don’t get it. Who think all that matters is money, and power, and takes pleasure in causing pain and death to any creature, on any pretext. With this insane badger cull now in progress, it’s probably the bleakest outlook ever in the UK. As Bill Oddie remarked – under this Government, no wild animal is safe. Actually . .. no animal.
I’ll be keeping my eyes open here today, and meeting many of the brave and very peace-loving people who are dedicating their time to saving innocent animals. Our visibility is everything, because it is the public that will eventually stop this hideous violence. So we have to inform the public. The newspapers are reluctantly coming around, it seems, but so much of what goes on out here is still being suppressed.
Britain is rotting at its core right now. Only awareness can cut out the rot.
I’ll be tweeting and Soapboxing today whenever I can – from the grim and bloody killing fields of Gloucestershire.
Having a very interesting time in Newent ! We’ve met loads of local folks and peaceful demonstrators, wounded badger patrollers. The support we’re feeling is huge. We’ve been trying to meet with local farmers, but it seems that the NFU have told them all they’re not allowed to talk to me. I guess that says a lot – what are they trying to hide ?
Just had a long chat on film, though, with a great local farmer who ISN’T a member of the NFU, so he wasn’t ‘got at’ ! Very nice guy, who is somewhat on the fence, but frustrated that the Government isn’t prioritising vaccination for cattle. He’s basically up for vaccination, because he doesn’t trust this lot to know what they are doing, and hasn’t seen any evidence that culling will work. Was shocked that they are not testing the carcasses. Why isn’t he in the NFU ? Well, that’s another story. But didn’t you have the impression that the NFU was speaking for the WHOLE community of British farmers.
Actually, only 18 per cent of farmers are in the NFU. Isn’t that pretty shocking ? When you realise that the NFU are virtually running the country, through manipulation of the Government. Well, it would be more accurate, though less kind, to say they’re in bed with the NFU, and the Countryside Alliance … the whole bunch of them straining at the bit, eager to get the moment when they can smash the Hunting Act, and bring back all the despicable blood sports they love so much. Badger culling is a lot different from Fox Hunting, right ? Or is it ? Isn’t it the same bunch of bloodthirsty thugs that are currently careering around Gloucester, that a couple of months ago were out there doing the same thing, slaughtering foxes for fun (legally) or digging out badgers for sadistic games (illegally) ???
Well, perhaps we’ll find out tonight.
We’re certainly hearing lots of stories which already blow the Government’s claims of ‘humane’ killing out of the water. Stories of badgers screaming after shots are fired, the sound of dogs finishing them off. Stories of wounded badgers escaping, along with bewildered cubs. Stories of badgers dying in front of people who were there to help, but weren’t allowed to help, kept back by police. Who knows … but perhaps we’ll see it a bit more first hand.
Just watching the Mock the Week thing. Kind of funny. Except it’s not a laughing matter. Still, comedy is good. Mixed bag, really. A shame that you have some idiot accusing badgers of being the reason hedgehogs are in decline. This is a bogus piece of propaganda – lies, of course. Hedgehogs have coexisted with Badgers for millennia, of course. What they haven’t coexisted with, of course, is slug pellets and pesticides and herbicides. Spin, spin spin. And it’s OUR money they’re using to hoodwink us.