Hundreds take a stand against cruel hunts in Edinburgh this weekend

March against fox hunting in Edinburgh, March 2018

The sun was shining in Edinburgh for what seems like the first time in weeks. It felt like a good omen as we gathered on Saturday with 750 members of the public to march along the Royal Mile to the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood. The aim of our ‘For the Foxes’ protest was to tell politicians it’s time to give the Scottish hunting ban some teeth.

Although Scotland was the first part of the UK to ban hunting, there has only been one conviction of a mounted hunt in that time – and it took 15 years for that to happen.

Amongst the crowd were many IFAW supporters. I managed to speak to a few before the march began, and was moved by the passion shown for this cause.  Thank you for taking time out of your weekend to join us!

I was immensely proud to lead the march with our friends from the League Against Cruel Sports Scotland and One Kind as well as Alison Johnstone, Green Party MSP and Colin Smyth, Labour MSP.

As Alison later explained to the crowd, if the Government don't sufficiently act to strengthen the hunting ban she will pursue her own Private Members Bill to ensure things do change. Recent polling shows that 8 out of 10 members of public in Scotland support the ban, so clearly such action would be positively received.

The march had a real sense of optimism; everyone felt that now was the time that things can really change for the better for foxes in Scotland.

We have a real opportunity right now, too. The Government consultation on strengthening the ‘Protection of Wild Mammals Scotland Act’ closed earlier this year. Hopefully, between this weekend's march and the thousands of responses submitted to the consultation, the Government will get the message and strengthen the Act to finally give us a real ban on hunting –  for the foxes.

--RH

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