2nd Jan 2019
A woman has described the chaos in her village as hounds, huntsmen and hunt saboteurs herded across the road and ended up in an elderly lady’s garden.
Sarah Stock was driving home with her husband when she got caught up in the stand-off between members of Belvoir Hunt and members of Nottingham Hunt Saboteurs in Billingborough, near Sleaford, on December 4.
A video posted on social media by the saboteurs shows a pack of dogs running across Folkingham Road into a garden followed by masked saboteurs.
A huntsman dismounts and goes to the hounds and then speaks to a resident who is concerned for the safety of her pet cat.
Ms Stock said: "It was in a lady’s garden in my village.
"She was terrified for her cat, 20 hounds in her garden and one huntsmen unable to call them off and hunt saboteurs shouting their heads off.
"I would have been furious if they had been in my garden."
She said that she is not anti hunt or supportive of it but says she does not understand why the animals were tearing through the village.
She said: "They came through Grimers Yard onto Folkingham Road and were in full chase, straight across the road and only one mounted huntsmen tearing after them.
"There was just lots of shouting from both sides. It was just an example of the hunt in villages, with dogs running amok.
"I am all for ‘tradition’ and if they were simply parading in their regalia and tooting their hooters for show, then all well and good."
Nottingham Hunt Saboteurs said they had warned "distressed locals to get their pets inside" during the incident.
A spokesperson said: "Panicked Hunt staff trespassed in gardens to recover their scattered pack and we also entered gardens to stop the hounds.
"Villagers were heard to express worry about their cats."
A spokesman for Lincoln Hunt Saboteurs, whose members were also in Billingborough on the day, told Lincolnshire Live: "We are purely a reaction to mindless cruelty.
"The pro-hunt fraternity needs to accept that 84 per cent of the public are opposed to hunting, can see through the trail hunt lies and it needs residing to the history books."
In 2004, it was made a criminal offence in England and Wales to hunt and kill wild animals with dogs.
The pursuit of live animals was replaced by trail hunting where hounds follow a pre-laid scent trail along an agreed route.
The Belvoir Hunt have been approached for a comment.
North West Hunt Saboteurs Association
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