Saboteur alleges sex attack at hunt

FEMALE hunt saboteurs have been asked to demonstrate against a leading West Country hunt today after allegations that one of their number has been subjected to sexual assaults by hunt followers.

Police have warned leaders of the Hursley Hambledon hunt to expect trouble during their meet at Froxfield Green, near Petersfield in Hampshire. The protest has been called by the Hunt Saboteurs Association after a series of alleged assaults on Jo Harris.

Ms Harris claims that the attacks began after she had discussed her work as a rape counsellor in a local television programme, Loud and Clear, last October. She alleges that the trouble started at the following Saturday's meeting of the Hambledon and involved followers well known to her.

'The men turned round and said they'd seen me on the programme,' she said. 'There were a lot of threats and people trying to get into my vehicle. There was a lot of touching and grabbing my breasts, people exposing themselves.

'Last Saturday, with the hunt near Exton, I'd gone in a field and this group, including some men I didn't know, rushed me and told me to remove myself off the land. I said 'OK', and then they got hold of me so hard one arm went dead.

'One of the chaps was squeezing my breasts and they had a lighted cigarette, trying to burn my face but it didn't make contact because I was struggling . . . Then a policeman came up and said 'Release her immediately.' '

Peter Humphrey, master of the Hursley Hambledon, rejected Ms Harris' allegations of sexual harassment and said there would be no inquiry among the hunt's followers.

He said: 'Poor Joanne. I've known her for years. I think her problem is that local papers have stopped giving her publicity and she's got to find new sources. If she's got a genuine complaint she should go to the police.'

Ms Harris says the alleged assaults have made her question her future as a hunt saboteur. 'I'm very distressed about the whole business and don't think I can go on doing this much longer.'

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Arts and Entertainment
musicBand's first new record for 20 years has some tough acts to follow
News
peopleAt least it's for a worthwhile cause
Voices
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
News
Liam Payne has attacked the media for reporting his tweet of support to Willie Robertson and the subsequent backlash from fans
peopleBut One Direction star insists he is not homophobic
Life and Style
healthFor Pure-O OCD sufferers this is a reality they live in
Life and Style
Sexual health charities have campaigned for the kits to be regulated
healthAmerican woman who did tells parents there is 'nothing to be afraid of'
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Pharmaceutical Computer System Validation Specialist

£300 - £350 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Pharmaceutical Computer ...

Senior Java Developer - API's / Webservices - XML, XSLT

£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is currently ...

Newly Qualified Teachers

£90 - £115 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: We are currently looking fo...

Year 3/4 Teacher

£120 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: Job Share Year 3/4 Teacher...

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments