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OUTREACH SKILLS AND Castle Cary

We did our first outreach in Castle Cary on 8 June 2021 and then returned on two more occasions to keep up the pressure.

Castle Cary, venue for the Blackmore and Sparkford Vale Hunt’s Boxing Day meet , against which we campaigned relentlessly in 2019, with a petition to the Town Council raising over 100 000 signatures and much media attention. We were, of course, ignored, and the meet went ahead anyway. Undeterred, we have returned and will keep returning until the Town Council listens to us. Pro hunters seem to think that Castle Cary is a strong hold for hunting, but judging by our reception yesterday, that is simply not true. Most Cary residents hate the hunt.

Have a listen to two of our conversations with the public. 

1)  “A Misguided Supporter”

This lady spoke to us on our  third outreach in Castle Cary on 6th July. 2021. The “Misguided Supporter” was trotting out all the usual platitudes about fox hunting, without actually having thought about any of it. By getting her to answer questions, it made her think about what she was actually saying. Because we were both polite and both listened to what the other was saying, the conversation was useful for both of us. 

The transcript is below.

 

2) “How to talk to a Pro”

This Pro was very clear on her reasons for supporting the hunt – until that is, she was questioned on whether she thought it was cruel. Because she couldn’t think of an answer, she walked off.

How to talk to a pro

by Pip - Castle Cary 8/06/2021

“The Misguided Supporter” Transcript.

HS = Hunt Supporter

Pip Would you like a leaflet?

HS No.

Pip So you do support animal cruelty?

HS No I don’t support animal cruelty but I do support keeping the number of sick and injured foxes
down, I had chickens and lambs that the foxes have killed this year, so…

Pip So are you saying that they are fox hunting and not trail hunting?

HS No I’m wishing they were fox hunting.

Pip They are not keeping the foxes down now.

HS All my chickens and lambs are being eaten so in a way I am pro getting rid.

Pip I’m sorry, I don’t quite understand your position. Fox hunting was banned because it was cruel, We
are standing here because it’s illegal and fox hunting is cruel, So to support that, you are actually
supporting animal cruelty.

HS Well am I supporting them by not disapproving of them?

Pip If you are supporting the hunt, you are supporting animal cruelty, there’s no doubt about that.

HS Well I’m not actually physically supporting the hunt, I don’t ride in it, I don’t pay them money,
but in my heart of hearts I get very upset when the fox comes, eats my lambs and chickens.

Pip Have you seen a fox eating lamb?

HS I’ve seen it in it’s mouth, going over the fence out of the paddock, yes.

Pip Are you sure that wasn’t a fox cub?

HS Absolutely positive, I then, because I screamed and shouted at it, it dropped it and I took the lamb
in and it was dead. It happened.

Pip O.K. I can’t dispute that at all but fox hunting is about chasing a terrified animal for miles and then
killing it with a pack of dogs. Surely you can’t support that.

HS No I don’t, ripping anything apart is horrible.

Pip So I understand that you want to be neutral, But I also understand that whatever is happening with
foxes and chickens and lambs has nothing to do with the hunt, because the hunt is not keeping the
foxes down at all, It has nothing to do with population control and never has. They actually breed
foxes in artificial earths, There’s on in Cucklington Wood where the hunt are breeding foxes, so if
you have your farm or chickens anywhere near to an artificial earth, the hunt is actually contributing
to you losing your chickens because they breed them. The last thing they want is to wipe out foxes,
That’s not what they want, they want more foxes so they can chase them. So they are working
against you.

HP Well that makes sense. I gotta go…….