HAVING attended the recent public scrutiny meeting on hunting held at the Cheshire Police HQ I wanted to say how impressed I was in the way it was conducted by the Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire David Keane and also commending him for tackling such a very emotive subject.

Many questions had been submitted to him from members of the public which he then put to the Chief Constable David Martland in order for him to answer as to how the police deal with many hunting issues, some of which he will need to enquire further as to the answer.

One of the questions put forward which I am extremely interested in was the one relating to the ‘terrier men’ as to their role and as to why they need to be present at a hunt with spades and dogs. The Chief Constable is to look into this.

It was stated that the main concerns by everybody should be public safety and how to improve this was paramount.

There had been a large increase in reported incidents from both anti and pro hunters so an action plan was put forward suggesting the introduction of an indicative map of a trail the hunt could follow thus avoiding highways, private dwellings, fields with other animals in, areas where mammals live, railway lines and any other dangerous area.

This would also avoid the hunt trespassing on land where the landowner had refused permission for the hunt to be there.

Another point in the plan would be the introduction of an authorised scent.

I feel sure that the hunting fraternity who state they are all law abiding citizens will be more than happy to comply with this action plan when the Chief Constable puts this to them and thus helping to keep everybody including the hounds and wild mammals safe.

Interesting times ahead – watch this space.

Hazel Cook Via email