I have not been able to attend a Boxing Day Hunt meet in Lewes for several years due to work commitments so I was looking forward to the opportunity of doing so this year.
The enormous crowd present was made up overwhelmingly of well-wishers with the usual very small number of legitimate protesters, much the same as I remember from attendances some years ago.
What was different was the behaviour of the protesters. Placards were waved in the faces of and even, in one case, thrown at horses who were clearly distressed.
Along with shouting and screaming at children on ponies this is not the behaviour of a caring person. How on earth can these protesters call themselves animal lovers acting like this?
Later in the day, I saw on television that this behaviour had been mirrored across the country. Simply disgraceful and a very black mark on the animal rights movement.
This was pure hatred vented on fellow human beings by those that think they are morally and ideologically superior to others and have some right to impose their views on those others by any means.
Lewes has a long liberal history of closing the High Street to enable thousands to attend the Bonfire celebrations and the Boxing Day hunt and enjoy themselves.
Please don’t let the despicable behaviour of a very small minority put that in jeopardy. It can be done peacefully as I understand the Old Surrey Burstow and West Kent Hunt at Chiddingstone Castle had a record number of riders and people on foot with no problems.