- Countryside Alliance
The Countryside Alliance
Abbreviation CA Formation 1997 Legal status Non-profit organisation Location 367 Kennington Road, Kennington, London, SE11 4PT Region served UK Membership 105,000 Chief Executive Alice Barnard Main organ Countryside Alliance Board Website www.countryside-alliance.org.uk
The Countryside Alliance (CA) is a British organisation promoting issues relating to the countryside such as country sports, including hunting, shooting and angling. In 2008 the group was named the 'most inspiring political personality' of the last ten years by Channel 4 News.
It was formed on 10 July 1997 from three organisations: the British Field Sports Society, and two other organisations (the Countryside Business Group and the Countryside Movement) which were formed with help from the British Field Sports Society. It is based near the Oval tube station at the junction of the A3 and A23.
The organisation covers mainly England and Wales, and is split into ten regions:
- The Chair of the Countryside Alliance is Labour MP Kate Hoey who represents the inner city seat of Vauxhall - the Alliance's head office is located in Kennington in Hoey's Vauxhall constituency.
- Labour Peer Ann Mallalieu, Baroness Mallalieu has been the President since 1998.
- Conservative Peer Benjamin Lloyd Stormont Mancroft, 3rd Baron Mancroft is Vice-Chairman.
- Conservative Peer and Former Conservative MP Marcus Kimball, Baron Kimball is Deputy President.
Hunting with Hounds
The Alliance states 'the countryside is enriched by country pursuits, whose participants should be free from prejudice and discrimination.'
The Alliance has long defended hunting, especially fox hunting, opposing the ban on fox hunting and other forms of hunting with hounds, which came into effect (in England and Wales) in February 2005. Amongst other causes, the Scottish Countryside Alliance campaigns against the Protection of Wild Mammals (Scotland) Act 2002, which banned hunting north of the border.
The Countryside Alliance mounted a series of legal challenges to the Hunting Act 2004 that banned hunting with hounds (integral to the sport of, for example, fox hunting) in England and Wales from 18 February 2005, which have not met with success.
Following the first conviction under the Hunting Act 2004 on 4 August 2006, the Countryside Alliance reaffirmed its belief that legislation was "illogical and unclear" and vowed to support the appeal of the conviction.
Opponents of the Alliance claim that this is the sole focus of the organisation, a claim it denies, saying that this campaigning is a response to the government's "preoccupation with the issue".
Membership & Affiliations
The CA claims 100,000 members (October 2002), and also claims that 400,000 supporters participated in its Liberty & Livelihood March in London on 22 September 2002, a figure accepted by the Metropolitan Police Service.
The CA is not affiliated to any particular political party. According to disclosures in the UK Register of data controllers, the CA carries out research on the backgrounds of those it considers to be its opponents.
The organisation has held fundraising rock concerts under the banner "Countryside Rocks" which have attracted support from stars including Pink Floyd's Roger Waters, The Who's Roger Daltrey, Procol Harum's Keith Reid, Roxy Music's Bryan Ferry, Eric Clapton and Genesis' Mike Rutherford.
- ^ http://www.fwi.co.uk/Articles/2008/01/25/109149/Countryside-Alliance-wins-Channel-4-award-for-political.htm
- ^ http://www.countryside-alliance.org/our_news_and_comment/hunting_news/Huntsman_will_appeal_court_decision
- ^ Vidal, John; Millar, Stuart (7 November 2002). "Hunt lobby holds personal files on thousands". The Guardian (London). http://www.guardian.co.uk/hunt/Story/0,2763,823883,00.html.
- ^ "Rock legends fight hunt ban". http://www.sundaysun.co.uk/news/north-east-news/2006/05/07/rock-legends-fight-hunt-ban-79310-17043799/.
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