IF there was a vote to overturn the current hunting ban it would have the backing of Ludlow MP Philip Dunne.

Despite a manifesto commitment that there would be a free vote during this parliament the Government has indicated this won’t happen.

Philip Dunne, who was out supporting Ludlow Hunt at its traditional Boxing Day meeting, would like to see the law changed.

But unless, or until there is a change of law Philip Dunne is clear that any hunt activity must be legal and not involve hounds chasing and killing foxes.

“Along with thousands of local residents I attended the Boxing Day meeting of the Ludlow Hunt in the centre of Ludlow,” said Mr Dunne.

“I made a donation to the Ludlow Hunt Supporters Club which organised the event that day.

“My own view is that hunting is a traditional activity in rural areas, which in the past has played an important part in maintaining a sustainable fox population.

“I support current hunting practice only where it demonstrably conforms to the law.”

He described the Hunting Act, passed following a free vote in 2004 as “deeply flawed and highly divisive.”

“It led to several compromises in its drafting, rendering the Act ineffective in much of its implementation.

As a result of this uncertainty I do support voting to repeal this Act.”

He was critical of the RSPCA that recently undertook a successful prosecution against a hunt.

“The RSPCA does good work in encouraging high standards of animal welfare and supporting animals which have been maltreated,”

Mr Dunne said.

“It is for their members to decide if they support spending large sums on taking legal action against a very few people to further a political agenda which I do not share.”