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26th August 2015

First Beam Of Light To Shine On Showground In 148 Years

Remember that petition to the Bucks County Show asking them not to support illegal hunting? Well, something amazing has happened. Tomorrow near Aylesbury, for the first time in 148 years, a beam of light will be shining on the showground in the name of wildlife protection.

Katie Angus (who started the petition) from Buckinghamshire reminds us and updates this ongoing story…

There’s an old saying that if you want something with all your heart you’ll get it. What I want is an end to animal cruelty in the name of blood sports. Have I got it? Not yet.

What I do have though is a huge step forward. An opportunity to give these animals who are persecuted in the name of propaganda, a voice. A chance to dispel the pro Hunt myths that have been created over the years in an attempt to justify chasing a terrified animal to an unthinkable death of being torn apart by hounds. Can you imagine that being yourself for just one moment? A death of being chased, terrified, until you’re exhausted and then being torn apart by dogs. How can anyone consider this a sport when it’s another animal being killed so barbarically? And in the name of ‘fun’ or ‘entertainment’. To a person capable of empathy it’s unthinkable.

As I have mentioned previously, in a recent poll by the League Against Cruel Sports (LACS), 8 out of 10 people were opposed to fox hunting across all regions of the UK. Not one region had more Pro Hunt supporters than Pro Ban supporters. Including Buckinghamshire. So whilst I accept that the county show reflects rural life and “the best it has to offer” I find it quite disturbing that this would include the barbaric killing of animals for sport something to be proud of? Surely this isn’t the best it has to offer? Thankfully, the majority would agree with me.

With this in mind, I started the petition to Bucks County Show to challenge their decision to reflect the views of a minority by having the local hunt present at the show, and parading in the main ring! Whilst I knew the issue would generate a good level of support, the rate at which this support grew, from every corner of the globe, was staggering! Over 120,000 people have now shown their support and allowed my one voice to become the voice of hundreds of thousands!

This of course generated a lot of media attention, good and bad, but like they say, no publicity is bad publicity when you have a cause to support! Following several radio interviews I was made an offer. To apply for a stand at the County Show. As a busy working Mum with none of the literature and documentation you’d need for a county show I called upon the League Against Cruel Sports for some guidance and support. They, in turn, applied for a stall on my behalf and were rejected live on BBC Three Counties Radio, with no official explanation. We of course don’t need an explanation. The argument and evidence that the LACS have for the truth behind blood sports is overwhelming and this kind of presence would be unwelcome at a Show who have openly confirmed that they are in support of ‘legal’ country pursuits.

I was then made another offer. To attend the show myself. Just me. No support from a large organisation, or any organisation in fact. Just me, “and one other”. My immediate response was for my safety and I was informed that I will be positioned next to the police tent! Comforting. One of the most surprising responses I encountered publicly from people in support of the hunt was to belittle my concern for my welfare and that of my family. Not that I should be surprised really. If you are able to enjoy chasing a terrified animal to a brutal death it would suggest a severe lack of empathy. With no heart or soul it must be difficult to comprehend why a mother would be concerned for the welfare of her family. But there you are. Speaks volumes really.

However, I am extremely fortunate to have a wonderfully supportive family who understand how much this cause means to me and how close it is to my heart and they offered their full support in seeing this campaign through. With so much support behind me, refusing the offer was never an option.

So with that in mind I accepted their offer! The LACS hoped they would be able to provide me with a sponsor so I could benefit from the legal cover, etc needed for the show but this was again rejected. They have refused any direct involvement from the LACS.

So, I went back to the drawing board. I completed all the documents required personally and sourced my own public liability insurance. I also paid full price for the stand as wasn’t given the charity rate due to not being an official charity. I now had everything needed to complete my application. Trying to arrange this alongside being a working Mum of a very active toddler, who is of course my number 1 priority, and having my own commitments to fulfil was extremely challenging but with the support of my family and friends, including all of you, my fox family of friends, I was able to overcome each and every wall and today I was given confirmation that my application has been accepted!

A little bit of history has been made today and will be made tomorrow! It’s the first time in the 148 year history of the show that an Anti-Hunting presence has ever been allowed! It’s the first time these animals will have a voice there, albeit a small one in the form of myself and a few friends, but we’ll be there. Dispelling the myths and providing the truth, and offering advice on how we can help and protect our local wildlife! I am immensely proud to have been able to see this through to a result, for all of us, and while the presence of the hunt will still be included, the presence of the anti-hunt will also be there. For the first time ever.

It’s an amazing breakthrough that wouldn’t have been possible without the support of each and every signature and share! Thank you all so much for your continued support and while it might only be me stood there tomorrow, I’ll be stood there for all of us, and I know I’ve got you all behind me! Our presence is a reflection that we’re living in a Pro Ban society, one where animal cruelty is no longer tolerated or wanted, let alone in the name of sport. This is a big step forward and a significant breakthrough. For those we couldn’t save and for those we still can.

Katie x

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21 Comments | Leave a comment

  • Natalie Cartmell says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 8:08 pm

    Truly an inspiration Katie! Good luck for tomorrow, not that you will need it. Will be there in spirit. :)

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  • Jeffrey Dickson says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 8:28 pm

    Well done Katie, i hope that you get plenty of good support from the decent people who dont support animal cruelty, you are a very brave Lady good luck with the show!
    I look forward to reading your after show report!
    Regards Jeff

    Reply to this comment >
  • Edna Leys says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 9:11 pm

    good luck for tomorrow a true David vs Goliath situation only David has thousands willing you on x

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  • Linda janes says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 9:14 pm

    I want to give you all the support in the world Katie, your an amazing strong young lady, with a heart as big as the universe for all animals and humans alike. You dedication to helping all animals and in particular foxes is commendable, if anyone can achieve their goals and dreams it is you foxy lady x

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  • Liz says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 10:02 pm

    Very best of luck to you. Although I don’t know you personally, I am so very proud of you.

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  • Brenda Clements says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 10:24 pm

    “The greatness of a nation and it’s moral progress can be judged by the way it’s animals are treated”

    GANDHI

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  • Megan Andersson says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 10:53 pm

    Hunting is animal cruelty and not a sport. Fox hunts are a disgusting display of group think that numbs human response to such barbaric activity. The vast majority are equally appalled.

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  • lee says:
    Posted August 26, 2015 at 11:34 pm

    well done and don’t forget there are 1000’s of us rooting for you and proud of you x

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  • MaryAlice Pollard (@CornwallsVoice) says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 12:56 am

    Katie this is absolutely fantastic – well done you and thank you for being such a strong and determined voice for animals …. and for the show for allowing an anti hunting presence – history and change in the making !

    With thanks,
    Mary Alice,
    Cornwall’s Voice for Animals UK

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  • Phil clark says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 5:48 am

    Good luck Katie. You are a lot stronger than you realise!

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  • Charmaine Scammell says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 7:49 am

    Well done Katie, your son and family must be so very proud of you.

    Shame on the Organisers for being biased and not allowing any involvement from the LACS and they feel it necessary for your stall to be positioned by the police. That, in itself, speaks volumes on the calibre of the Huntsmen!!

    I hope you and your son had a lovely safe day xx

    Reply to this comment >
  • Charmaine Scammell says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 7:52 am

    Well done Katie, your son and family must be so very proud of you.

    I hope you and your son had a lovely safe day xx

    I have had to repost this as although I hadn’t posted anything before, I got a message saying duplicate and that I had already posted that comment!!!

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  • Shaun Orriss says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 9:07 am

    You go girl, I am sure your family are incredibly proud of you. It’s about time the majority stood up to be counted.

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  • Ruth Eames says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 2:05 pm

    This is fantastic! Thank you for all you’ve done to make this happen. Add me to long list of your supporters in this!

    Reply to this comment >
  • Eve Elliott-Pearson says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    Be proud of yourself honey !!! Respect x

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  • Julia Read says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    Very best of luck to you Katie and thank you from all of us who can’t attend and support you at the event. I am glad to hear your petition had such a huge positive response.

    Reply to this comment >
  • Val Eustice says:
    Posted August 27, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    A well written and heartfelt piece Katie, I totally support you. My health won’t allow me to be there tomorrow, but I will be thinking of you and your band of helpers. If there is anything else I can do, please let me know. Val

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  • Adrian says:
    Posted August 28, 2015 at 6:51 am

    Well done Katie you carried the torch for decent people with compassion and love of our wildlife. Today was yet another nail in the coffin of blood sports and slowly but surely these vile hunting types are seeing their “perversion” (don’t call it SPORT) die before them screaming an writhing just like the prey they love to kill.

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  • Eve Mangold says:
    Posted August 28, 2015 at 11:27 am

    Well done Katie! You are so brave to stand up for your beliefs (and those of 80% of us) These “people” are nothing but evil bullies. I find it sad that the LACS didn’t see fit to support you. If I am able I will offer my support in the future.

    Reply to this comment >
    • MaryAlice Pollard (@CornwallsVoice) says:
      Posted August 30, 2015 at 5:57 pm

      If all the big animal groups/charities would group together and work as one and support each other and individuals, so much more would be accomplished and quicker !

      Heaven only knows, those who abuse animals are united and have each other’s backs !

      Such a pity.

      Mary Alice, an independent Cornwall’s Voice for Animals

      Reply to this comment >
  • Chris Curran says:
    Posted September 09, 2015 at 5:10 pm

    Oh wow – well done Katie. What a wonderful achievement. It would be great if all County Shows did the same. We must all keep fighting. xx

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