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In addition to the Stonehenge tunnel debacle the Trust dealt a second blow to its own reputation at the AGM by supporting a quite ludicrous proposition – that Trail hunting on Trust land is acceptable because hounds can be controlled at all times.

Anyone who has a dog will know that’s a lie. Time and again The League Against Cruel Sports has actually shown the Trust examples of where hounds “ignore the rules” and The Trust went to the AGM well aware of that simple fact of animal behaviour. Now it is in an invidious position. Not only has it shredded its own reputation at Stonehenge it has also done so over trail hunting – for every time hounds fail to be controlled the Trust’s position will be seen to be mistaken.

The Trust has staked its reputation on these fellows, not the humans, keeping to the rules! What are the chances?

It took just a few days for the Trust’s argument to be disproved beyond denial. Hounds (and a man on a quad bike) intruded into the Happy Landings Animal Shelter near Shepton Mallet, “terrifying” one of the rescue dogs. As the Shelter said: “This is totally unacceptable and there was no control at all over the hounds! It is not known which hunt was involved but it’s a fact that the National Trust has issued Trail Hunting licences to a number of hunts in that area, including the Minehead Harriers, the Seavington Hunt and the Portman Hunt.

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