Anti-hunt ac­tivists’ be­hav­iour in spot­light

Sup­port­ers of sabo­teurs’ so­cial me­dia pages have made sick­en­ing com­ments af­ter the death of a hunt fol­lower

Horse & Hound - - News Insider - By ELEANOR JONES

THE be­hav­iour of anti-hunt ac­tivists has come un­der the spot­light again, fol­low­ing vile com­ments made about the death of a hunt fol­lower.

Jane Gor­ing, 57, suf­fered fa­tal in­juries while out with the Mid Sur­rey Farm­ers’ Draghounds on 7 Novem­ber.

Mrs Gor­ing was in­volved in an in­ci­dent caught on film by hunt sabo­teurs last au­tumn, in which a masked man grabbed her horse’s bri­dle and she ap­peared to hit him with her whip. She had ini­tially been told she would not face pros­e­cu­tion, but was later told she was fac­ing a pri­vate pros­e­cu­tion over the same in­ci­dent, and was due to go to court in Jan­uary.

Since her death, a num­ber of vile com­ments have been made on­line by fol­low­ers of sabs’ so­cial me­dia pages.

“The com­ments made in light of Jane’s tragic death are de­plorable and we send our sin­cere con­do­lences to Jane’s fam­ily and friends at this dif­fi­cult time,” a Coun­try­side Al­liance spokesman said.

“As we have al­ways known, the re­al­ity is that the anti-hunt­ing move­ment is far more about the ha­tred of peo­ple who fol­low hounds than the love of an­i­mals.

“The Coun­try­side Al­liance strongly con­demns on­line bul­ly­ing of any kind and has long cam­paigned to raise aware­ness of the is­sue. As a re­sult, we have re­cently launched a ded­i­cated por­tal where those who re­ceive on­line abuse for sup­port­ing

coun­try sports can send their ev­i­dence.”

Mrs Gor­ing’s close friend Ma­caylla Ruther­ford told H&H: “Jane was a hero.

“She had a heart of gold; I lost my mum nine months ago and Jane was my rock. She was my chil­dren’s god­mother; now they say she’s their fairy god­mother and she’s with their nanny.

“She was loved by ev­ery­one. Just a nor­mal per­son; not up­per­class, not try­ing to pre­tend she was some­thing she wasn’t, she just fit­ted in ev­ery­where and with ev­ery­one.

“It’s all trail-hunt­ing; go­ing out with your horse to have a bril­liant day out. Hunt­ing is a com­mu­nity and you all stick to­gether.”

Ma­caylla added that af­ter the in­ci­dent, Mrs Gor­ing was sub­ject to vile tele­phone calls, and had to have po­lice pro­tec­tion out­side her house, not to men­tion the more re­cent com­ments on­line.

“They’re dis­gust­ing peo­ple; who would write things like that?” Ma­caylla asked.

“I want ev­ery­one to know she wasn’t guilty of any­thing; she was a leg­end and a hero.”

On the com­ments, Lee Moon of the Hunt Sabo­teurs As­so­ci­a­tion (HSA) told H&H: “We haven’t said any­thing on the mat­ter, and we will con­tinue not to.”

Asked whether the HSA would con­demn the com­ments, he said he would not “dis­cuss it fur­ther”.

Sup­port­ers of sabo­teur groups made the com­ments. Li­brary im­age

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