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Protesters voice their opposition to hunting at New Year’s Day Meet

A large contingent of protesters voiced their opposition to hunting in Carmarthen on Wednesday (Jan 1) as the Carmarthenshire Hunt gathered for their traditional New Year’s Day Meet in the town.

Riders had gathered at Parc Myrddin Car Park, which was provided free of charge. Riders and supporters then made their way to the Boar’s Head on Lammas Street where they stopped for refreshments. Bystanders engaged with the riders and interacted with the hunt dogs.

A number of riders then made their way to Guildhall Square where they were met by a crowd of people protesting with placards calling to keep blood sports banned, to strengthen the ban, and chanting ‘shame on you’. A large number of people applauded and cheered on the riders.

There was a significant police presence in the area but our photographer Peter Tully who was at the event said that it was relatively calm apart from the shouting and the use of bad language.

A number of roads were closed in the area to facilitate the meet.

Photos and Video: Peter A Tully

The Hunting Act 2004 (c 37) is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which bans the hunting of wild mammals (notably foxes, deer, hares and mink) with dogs in England and Wales; the Act does not cover the use of dogs in the process of flushing out an unidentified wild mammal, nor does it affect drag hunting, where hounds are trained to follow an artificial scent.

The Act came into force on 18 February 2005. The pursuit of foxes with hounds, other than to flush out to be shot, had been banned in Scotland two years earlier by the Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Act 2002. Such hunting remains permitted by the law in Northern Ireland, where the Act does not apply.

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