Letter: Hunting bludgeon

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Charlotte Townshend, owner of Chesil Beach, 15,000 acres of Dorset, 3,000 acres of Nottinghamshire, parts of Kensington, plus pounds 60m, has "scuppered" plans for a National Nature Reserve at Chesil Beach because she finds Labour's plans to abolish hunting "astonishing and misguided" (report, 17 July).

Labour's plans to allow a free vote in Parliament on hunting were very well publicised prior to the 1997 election.

Labour went on to win this election by a massive majority.

Michael Foster's Anti-Hunting Bill had a majority in Parliament of 260 votes.

So it seems strange that Mrs Townshend finds the Prime Minister's present statement "astonishing" unless she is unaware of these facts. Many people have been hoping for such a statement for many months.

This pro-hunting lady seems to be using her vast wealth as a bludgeon to attain her own ends, and put pressure on the Government to back down from its anti-hunting stand.

So much for democracy!

E STRETCH

Wakeham, Dorset

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