Great Britain celebrates its gold medal triumphs at today’s Olympic closing ceremony. But away from the spotlight, shooting fanatics will be taking to the moors in Derbyshire and other uplands around the country for the official start of the grouse shooting season.
A number of rich and powerful people secured a lifelong injunction against me in 1981 preventing me from going onto certain Derbyshire moors during the grouse shooting season. They wanted to prevent me from witnessing what can only be described as a gruesome spectacle of animal abuse.
August 12th is often referred to as the so-called ‘Glorious 12th’, which marks the start of a mass slaughter of birds by wealthy gun-toting bloodsports enthusiasts. In sharp contrast to this brutish behaviour, London 2012 has witnessed numerous medals won for Great Britain by genuine sportsmen and women. And it’s this that should be celebrated as 2012’s real Glorious Twelfth.
There is nothing glorious about grouse shooting. Each year, from August to December, picturesque moorlands are invaded by groups of men and even children armed with guns, having paid for the ‘pleasure’ of shooting and injuring thousands of terrified birds.
The cruelty associated with grouse shooting doesn’t stop there. Other wildlife including badgers, foxes, deer and even pets are killed or injured through the use of snaring and other predator control used by the industry to protect game stocks.
The fact that the grouse numbers are depleted this year simply means that a higher percentage of the population will be killed, which may affect long term population recovery.”
The League Against Cruel Sports’ recent exposé of the game-shooting industry highlights the reality of commercial shooting away from the spin and propaganda peddled by the industry. Further information and the film can be found by logging onto: http://www.league.org.uk/content/300/Shooting