A fox hunting

FOX-HUNTING SUSTAINS JOBS

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The jobs of some 12,500 people are sustained by fox-hunting, either directly or indirectly. 1,000 Hunt staff are employed full time throughout the year solely because of hunting. Hunt followers employ the equivalent of 3000 jobs for hunting, mostly grooms. 7,500 job equivalents arise from the involvement with hunting of  Riding Stables, Feed Industries, Vets, Pharmaceuticals, Saddlers, Blacksmiths and other suppliers of equestrian items.  1000 job equivalents in hotels, public houses and garages arise from hunting.

The Trail Hunting Expedient, introduced in an attempt to maintain as much as practicable of the Infrastructure of Fox-Hunting, has succeeded in preserving jobs, to an extent, but there have been job losses that the persecuted "Rural Culture" deeply resents.

Why do these numbers matter when they are small compared with normal fluctuations in national employment levels; particularly in industrial areas?

Yes; but many hunting jobs are in the depths of the countryside, where jobs are difficult to get. The traditional social fabric of rural life depends upon those who work there. It is being swamped by incomers who often work elsewhere. They are welcome, but usually import and live within an "urban way of life" which is different from " the rural way of life of the native country people". Therefore, hunting is a major factor in sustaining the centuries old society of country people: that is people who do rural work; farmers, horse breeders, farm labourers, hedgers, ditchers etc.

Go to a public house in a country town and ask "which pub is used by the locals?" Visit it and talk to them. I would be surprised if you did not come to the conclusion that all the UK's different social fabrics are worth sustaining.

 

WHAT WOULD HAVE HAPPENED TO JOBS & THE ECONOMY IF HUNTING WERE TO BE BANNED AND TRAIL HUNTING WITH THE LIMITED HUNTING PERMITTED HAD NOT BEEN KEPT ALIVE?

On 1 July 1997, the Horse and Pony Taxation Committee sent to Treasury Ministers a paper on the costs involved if hunting were to be abolished.

The Committee is concerned with the economic and financial aspects of equestrian activities and the paper deals with these effects of the proposed abolition, leaving the moral, conservation and cultural arguments to others.

The paper allowed for reemployment of  some 20%  of the resources used in fox-hunting through an  increase in Drag Hunting by as much as the availabiliy of  space and the numbers of riders likely to swich sports might allow.

In summary the paper concludes that:

Between 12,500 and 14,000 jobs would be lost.

The people who would lose their jobs pay some £20million in Income Tax and National Insurance - the equivalent of 4pence a litre on petrol and diesel tax.

The Treasury would also face increased expenditure on unemployment benefit and, for example, on helping agriculture with the costs of disposal of dead farm animals (at present the hunts usually collect them free or for far less than knackers).

The equestrian trades would suffer further closures of riding schools,  shops etc.

Racing, which pays over £500million a year in tax to the Government, would be badly affected.

It is expected that 15,000 to 20,000 horses, worth up to £40million, and 12,000 hounds would be slaughtered. 40,000 to 45,000 better horses would lose up to £200million in value.

NOTE: The Committee is normally concerned with budget representations and similar matters. It is a joint committee of the bodies named below with an independent chairman.

Chairman: The Rt. Hon. Sir John Cope FCA

Members: Association of British Riding Schools, British Horseracing Board, British Horse Society,

Country Landowners' Association, National Farmers' Union,

National Light Horse Breeding Society, National Pony Society,

Thoroughbred Breeders' Association, Welsh Agricultural Equine Association

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