‘Trail hunting’ has continued to be used as a smokescreen by hunts across the UK to coverup their barbaric activities and continue to illegally hunt wild foxes.

Please watch our animation below created by Fire Lily Studio for Keep The Ban.

Since fox hunting became illegal in 2004 there has been endless evidence that hunts have no desire to abide by the law. With thousands of foxes still being murdered, the use of terrier men, hounds clearly not following a scent and causing harm (and death) to domestic animals, and the shocking exposé of senior huntsman Mark Hankinson declaring on a webinar that trail hunting is in fact a ‘smokescreen’.

This year the National Trust made the historic decision to ban so-called ‘trail hunts’ from their land and Keep The Ban is now pushing to ensure all other landowners follow suit.
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Let's end 'trail hunt' licences for good
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our message

Keep The Ban’s animation ‘A trail of lies’, narrated by TV presenter and conservationist Chris Packham and voiced by actor Peter Egan documents the key moments since fox hunting was made illegal in 2004.

The animation blows away the lie that is ‘trail hunting’ and exposes how it is has continuously and persistently been used as a “smokescreen” for illegal fox hunting. In theory hunts claim to be following an artificial scent as opposed to a live mammal but as referenced in the animation, “During a decade long study, hunt monitors reported that only 1% of so-called trail hunts lay a potentially genuine trail”.

The animation also makes reference to the presence of terriermen as proof of the trail hunt lies. These individuals are directly or indirectly employed by hunts to ensure foxes cannot escape underground either by digging them out or blocking badger setts prior to a hunt. Following on from this the animation then focuses on the ‘turning point’.

“After 17 years of inaction from the authorities, saboteurs needed to battle through the smokescreen and gather evidence from the very top of the hunting community - the hunting office.

In 2020, they got just that.

Three online zoom webinars run by the office were leaked, revealing a nationwide conspiracy to strengthen and continue the smokescreen of trail hunting.

Earlier this year Mark Hankinson, former director of the Masters of Foxhounds Association was found guilty of encouraging or assisting others to evade the ban on fox hunting. The lie that is “trail hunting” is well and truly over and unsurprisingly major landowners such as the National Trust have come forward to end the licencing of hunts on their land.

Keep The Ban hopes the animation will expose the public to the realities of fox hunting in this country and encourage other major landowners such as the Ministry of Defence (who gave out 11 new hunting licences for the forthcoming 21/22 hunting season) to permanently ban hunting on their land.

our thoughts

Rob Pownall - Founder of Keep The Ban

“Every year hunts across the country take to the streets to glorify their sick and sordid pastime, using horses and hounds to present a cuddly and romanticised image to the public. This animation is a stark reminder of the ‘trail hunt’ lies. It is about time major landowners, councils and decision makers stood up for wildlife and end the facilitation of sordid activities carried out by gangs of wildlife abusers.”

Chris Packham - Wildlife TV presenter & conservationist

"They shoot their hounds, they whip their hounds, they punch their horses. They kill people’s pets, damage their property, break the law and rip our diminishing wildlife to pieces for fun. This shocking animation shows the true nature of wildlife persecution and how those responsible have been able to get away it for so long. Well not anymore. It’s time for decision makers to make a stand. It’s time for the Ministry of Defence and other complicit organisations to wake up to the ‘trail hunt lies’ and ban the hunts for good. Please take action and sign the petition to end this madness."

Peter Egan - Actor

"There are many things in life that I abhor..cruelty and lies top the list..which is precisely why I cannot stand anyone involved in hunting.The Hunting Act 2004 commenced in February 2005 since which time it has been ignored and lied about by those well heeled psychopaths and their lackeys. Lord Mancroft's webinar exposed the depths of deceit these people will go to fulfill their horrible and disgusting pastime..laying trails of lies and smokescreens with one destroy wildlife..and ride roughshod over the will of over 85% of our nation. End trail hunting..stop the lies..stop the cruelty."


A recent survey conducted by Survation on behalf of Keep The Ban found a strong 61.7% majority in favour of trail hunting being permanently banned, with 63.6% also agreeing that foxes should be given greater protection in the UK.


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