Controversy after Wilton Hunt hires Salisbury Guildhall for event

Judgemental

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Controversy after Wilton Hunt hires Salisbury Guildhall for event

By Elisabeth Wilson @ElisabethWilsNews Reporter

Salisbury Guildhall is to host the Wilton Hunt's Christmas party this month

Salisbury City Council has been criticised for allowing a hunt association to hire the Guildhall for its Christmas party.
The Wilton Hunt will host its Christmas ball at the public venue, owned by the city council, next Saturday (December 18).
However, concerns have been raised over whether the event should be taking place at the Guildhall.
The Journal understands it is no longer possible for the hunt to meet outside the Guildhall, in the Guildhall Square, so questions have been asked as to why the group is allowed inside the building.

Concerns raised by residents refer to past links between the Wilton Hunt and Mark Hankinson, who was convicted of intentionally encouraging huntsmen to use legal trail hunting as a “smokescreen” for the unlawful chasing and killing of animals in October this year.
Read more: Mark Hankinson fined £3,500 for illegal fox hunting webinars
Mr Hankinson, who is also the Director of the Masters of Foxhounds Association, was Joint Master and Huntsman of the Wilton Hunt until 2012.

However, the offences of which he was found guilty took place during two webinars in August 2020.
There is no evidence to suggest he took part in illegal activities while based at Wilton.
Criticised for 'hypocrisy'

The city council, which manages the building, has been accused of potentially supporting illegal hunting activity by allowing the association to make a booking in the Guildhall.
Peter Matthews, 66, Amesbury resident and volunteer for Action Against Foxhunting (AAF), said he is “concerned” about the hosting of the event due to the recent prosecution of Mr Hankinson, accusing the city council of “hypocrisy”.
He said: “I understand the Wilton Hunt has been using the Guildhall for a few years now, but due to the recent prosecution I am concerned about this hosting.
“Does the city council now condone foxhunting? Are the Guildhall and Salisbury City Council not aware that a previous hunt master of the Wilton Hunt was recently prosecuted for encouraging illegal foxhunting?

“Have they just turned a blind eye for profit?”
Pewsey resident Tina Watson, 59, who spotted the event on social media, added: “Hankinson is a convicted criminal, who was recently found guilty of encouraging others to break the Hunting Act.
“It would appear this is supporting illegal hunting. It is inconceivable that our public buildings profit from the illegally-slain blood of our wildlife.”
'It's a venue and it's a Christmas party'

Mayor of Salisbury, Cllr Caroline Corbin, said: “I don’t like hunting, but, as a council, it’s a venue and it’s a Christmas party. They haven’t got horses in the square, it’s slightly different.
“The logistics of the management of the Guildhall day-to-day is down to the Guildhall’s staff. The hiring of the hall as a venue, councillors do not have much to do with it.
“But if it is that controversial and our residents feel that something needs to be done, then there would be a route to accommodate that too.”
'No policy to ban groups'

In a statement, the management of the Guildhall said it did not “have a policy to ban any particular organisations” from using the building, but would actually “look into the issue” in the New Year.
The statement read: “The city council manages the Guildhall and hires the space to a variety of groups and organisations throughout the year.

“The booking to the Wilton Hunt is one such booking.
“The city council does not have a policy that would ban any particular organisations from using its facilities but will look into the issue in more depth in the New Year.”
Hunt denies 'spurious' claims of illegal activity
A spokesperson from the Wilton Hunt responded to the concerns by refuting any “spurious” allegations of illegal activity: “The Wilton Hunt conducts lawful trail hunting activities at all times to comply with the Hunting Act.
“We retain evidence of each hunting day - of which we have carried out thousands since traditional hunting with hounds was restricted in 2005 - and we refute any allegations about illegal activity.
“Any organisation or business that supports the Wilton Hunt can be assured that they are not condoning an illegal activity because the hunt complies with the law despite spurious allegations made by those with an anti-hunting agenda.”
 

Hanno Verian

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Salisbury council has allowed the hunt to hire the hall because it wants to make money from them to enable the council to continue to deliver services. There is nothing illegal about holding a party there providing covid restrictions and other procedures are adhered to.
You have obviously appointed yourself the arbiter of what people can and cant do, the hunt has a right to hire a public building, just as you have the right to protest about hunting. You cant have it both ways
 

Judgemental

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Not sure why they'd want to meet outside of it, it's right in the middle of the city 😂
Up until about the 1970s the Hunt always held their Boxing Day meet in the Guildhall Square, of which the Salisbury Journal have historical pictures. Then the Field would hack up the hill (about two miles) to Odstock Wood and hunt 'a very convenient fox'.
 

Hanno Verian

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Up until about the 1970s the Hunt always held their Boxing Day meet in the Guildhall Square, of which the Salisbury Journal have historical pictures. Then the Field would hack up the hill (about two miles) to Odstock Wood and hunt 'a very convenient fox'.
You are talking about 50 years ago....... the Salisbury of that period was very less developed than it is today.... I dont see the point you are making. They used to meet there, they havent for 50 years...move on!
 

Judgemental

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It isnt news its an article in a minor regional newspaper....wake me up when it hits Fleet Street
My sources tell me that there is more to the report in the Salisbury Journal than immediately meets the eye, which I am told will develop. History plays a major role in such matters and provincial environs. As an aside, no doubt the Sabs are on the case and will lobby attendees.
 
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YorksG

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My sources tell me that there is more to the report in the Salisbury Journal than immediately meets the eye, which will develop. As an aside, no doubt the Sabs are on the case and will lobby attendees.
Are you suggesting that people are intending to harrass people, when they attend a meal? That's hardly stopping hunting
 

Judgemental

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Are you suggesting that people are intending to harrass people, when they attend a meal? That's hardly stopping hunting
Much of the problem is generated by the perceived view, that the facility which is maintained with taxpayers' money, is being hired by rich entitled folk of the county, who have huge properties, castles and great country houses in which to hold events, which is customary. In the circumstances, I am told that as this is in central Salisbury there may have to be a police presence, because of the sabs thus there is an inevitable expense for the taxpayer.
 

Tiddlypom

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Are you suggesting that people are intending to harrass people, when they attend a meal? That's hardly stopping hunting
I have no idea about the Wilton Hunt and whether it is a legal trail hunt or a norty one, but in these parts the antis do sometimes stake out the venues for dismounted hunt social gatherings.
 

shortstuff99

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Much of the problem is generated by the perceived view, that the facility which is maintained with taxpayers' money, is being hired by rich entitled folk of the county, who have huge properties, castles and great country houses in which to hold events, which is customary. In the circumstances, I am told that as this is in central Salisbury there may have to be a police presence, because of the sabs thus there is an inevitable expense for the taxpayer.
Are rich people not allowed to hire venues?

You're misguided on hunting if you think everyone who does it is rich.

Also they wouldn't need to spend taxpayers money on policing of they didn't sab a meal that would have zero impact on whether someone hunts or not.

And this is coming from someone who agrees with a hunting ban and having legal trail, drag etc hunting. This does make sabs look weird I think.
 

Judgemental

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Are rich people not allowed to hire venues?

You're misguided on hunting if you think everyone who does it is rich.

Also they wouldn't need to spend taxpayers money on policing of they didn't sab a meal that would have zero impact on whether someone hunts or not.

And this is coming from someone who agrees with a hunting ban and having legal trail, drag etc hunting. This does make sabs look weird I think.
Salisbury is a particularly sensitive place when it comes to taxpayers money and for example, the issues generated by the Russian Novichok poisoning. Folk simply do not want any bother of any sort, especially in the City center.
 

shortstuff99

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Salisbury is a particularly sensitive place when it comes to taxpayers money and for example, the issues generated by the Russian Novichok poisoning. Folk simply do not want any bother of any sort, especially in the City center.
But taxpayers aren't paying for it, they are as a private hire. There would also be zero bother, it is Sabs who are making a bother. The public would have zero clue who they even were if it weren't for a sab going to the press, they aren't going to start hunting in the middle of dinner.
 

ycbm

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Much of the problem is generated by the perceived view, that the facility which is maintained with taxpayers' money, is being hired by rich entitled folk of the county, who have huge properties, castles and great country houses in which to hold events, which is customary. In the circumstances, I am told that as this is in central Salisbury there may have to be a police presence, because of the sabs thus there is an inevitable expense for the taxpayer.

If it's being hired then they are contributing to the cost of maintenance of the building.

If the police presence is going to cost money then that is the fault of the sabs, not of the hunt.

I'm as much against hunting fox as you are Judgemental but your posts on the subject over many years now are bizarre and to be honest sometimes suggest that you don't have all your marbles.
.
 

ester

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Up until about the 1970s the Hunt always held their Boxing Day meet in the Guildhall Square, of which the Salisbury Journal have historical pictures. Then the Field would hack up the hill (about two miles) to Odstock Wood and hunt 'a very convenient fox'.
Yeah, it's a bit different 50 years later though! I've hunted quite a bit locally, I have photos with the cathedral in the background while hunting. I still wouldnt' want to be in front of the guildhall thanks!

Salisbury is a particularly sensitive place when it comes to taxpayers money and for example, the issues generated by the Russian Novichok poisoning. Folk simply do not want any bother of any sort, especially in the City center.
I'm sorry what?! You must know completely different salisbury people to me!
 

Amymay

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Much of the problem is generated by the perceived view, that the facility which is maintained with taxpayers' money, is being hired by rich entitled folk of the county, who have huge properties, castles and great country houses in which to hold events, which is customary. In the circumstances, I am told that as this is in central Salisbury there may have to be a police presence, because of the sabs thus there is an inevitable expense for the taxpayer.
There are four castles in the area, and a handful of large country houses. Are the owners of these (including the NT) the only ones attending? Or are numbers being made up by the ‘ordinary’ folk who enjoy hunting?
 

Judgemental

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There are four castles in the area, and a handful of large country houses. Are the owners of these (including the NT) the only ones attending? Or are numbers being made up by the ‘ordinary’ folk who enjoy hunting?
This is very interesting and far more to matters than meet the eye. The relevant point is because one of the castles is very intimately connected with the hunt. One would have thought the owner would have come to the aid of the poor hunt in their hour of need. Indeed it puts one in mind of:

Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the Feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shone the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gathering winter fuel
Hither, page, and stand by me,
If thou knowst it, telling
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?
Sire, he lives a good league hence,
Underneath the mountain
Right against the forest fence
By Saint Agnes fountain.
Bring me flesh and bring me wine
Bring me pine logs hither
Thou and I shall see him dine
When we bear them thither.
Page and monarch, forth they went
Forth they went together
Through the rude winds wild lament
And the bitter weather
Sire, the night is darker now
And the wind blows stronger
Fails my heart, I know not how
I can go no longer.
Mark my footsteps, good my page
Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shall find the winters rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly.
In his masters step he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, Christian men, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye, who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing.
 

Clodagh

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I'm as much against hunting fox as you are Judgemental but your posts on the subject over many years now are bizarre and to be honest sometimes suggest that you don't have all your marbles.
.
Much as I ignore the OP here, as I strongly agree with you, I have to say that having read your post I can confirm that wine is an effective sinus flush 🤭🥺😀
 

Amymay

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This is very interesting and far more to matters than meet the eye. The relevant point is because one of the castles is very intimately connected with the hunt. One would have thought the owner would have come to the aid of the poor hunt in their hour of need. Indeed it puts one in mind of:
Why?
 

ycbm

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This is very interesting and far more to matters than meet the eye. The relevant point is because one of the castles is very intimately connected with the hunt. One would have thought the owner would have come to the aid of the poor hunt in their hour of need. Indeed it puts one in mind of:

Good King Wenceslas looked out
On the Feast of Stephen
When the snow lay round about
Deep and crisp and even
Brightly shone the moon that night
Though the frost was cruel
When a poor man came in sight
Gathering winter fuel
Hither, page, and stand by me,
If thou knowst it, telling
Yonder peasant, who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?
Sire, he lives a good league hence,
Underneath the mountain
Right against the forest fence
By Saint Agnes fountain.
Bring me flesh and bring me wine
Bring me pine logs hither
Thou and I shall see him dine
When we bear them thither.
Page and monarch, forth they went
Forth they went together
Through the rude winds wild lament
And the bitter weather
Sire, the night is darker now
And the wind blows stronger
Fails my heart, I know not how
I can go no longer.
Mark my footsteps, good my page
Tread thou in them boldly
Thou shall find the winters rage
Freeze thy blood less coldly.
In his masters step he trod
Where the snow lay dinted
Heat was in the very sod
Which the Saint had printed
Therefore, Christian men, be sure
Wealth or rank possessing
Ye, who now will bless the poor
Shall yourselves find blessing.
Judgemental, I refer you to my point about marbles.
 
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Hanno Verian

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Much of the problem is generated by the perceived view, that the facility which is maintained with taxpayers' money, is being hired by rich entitled folk of the county, who have huge properties, castles and great country houses in which to hold events, which is customary. In the circumstances, I am told that as this is in central Salisbury there may have to be a police presence, because of the sabs thus there is an inevitable expense for the taxpayer.
I love this..true colours are now out..its not about animal welfare its about class war!

I love your sterotypical views of hunting, that everyone who hunts is a rich toff! Plus the moral outrage for Salisbury's taxpayers that the rich should use a venue, but surely if they are all members of the super rich elite they are the ones paying the most to maintain it (Source Institute of Fiscal Studies Report 2019) as the highest 1% of income taxpayers account for 27% of all income tax.

Salisbury is a particularly sensitive place when it comes to taxpayers money and for example, the issues generated by the Russian Novichok poisoning. Folk simply do not want any bother of any sort, especially in the City center.
The only reason that there has to be a police presence is because of the likelihood of disruption/violence through illegal activity by your class war warriors...sorry Hunt Monitors...Hunt Sabs.
 

Hanno Verian

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Salisbury is a particularly sensitive place when it comes to taxpayers money and for example, the issues generated by the Russian Novichok poisoning. Folk simply do not want any bother of any sort, especially in the City center.
Well there is one thing that we agree on - Folk simply do not want any bother in the city centre, or more accurately folk dont want the antis to kick off in Salisbury City Centre full stop
 

lula

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Much of the problem is generated by the perceived view, that the facility which is maintained with taxpayers' money, is being hired by rich entitled folk of the county, who have huge properties, castles and great country houses in which to hold events, which is customary. In the circumstances, I am told that as this is in central Salisbury there may have to be a police presence, because of the sabs thus there is an inevitable expense for the taxpayer.
so it’s the antis’ fault there has to be a police presence and thus the inevitable expense to the taxpayer.

well we know what the solution to that is don’t we?
Anyway, this is old news, I hope everyone had a great party as they are legally entitled to do and the anti’s went home crying cos no one offered them a drink and they had no invites to Xmas parties themselves.
 
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