The Countryside Alliance’s challenge to the Hunting Act 2004 under European Human Rights law and European Union law will be heard in the Appeal Court this week.
The challenge will cover two sessions beginning today (Monday, 13 March) and last till Wednesday, 15 March. The second session will commence on Monday, 20 March and conclude on Wednesday, 22 March.
Although the High Court did not find in favour of the Countryside Alliance, it granted them leave to appeal on several points.
The High Court accepted that elements of European Human Rights and EU law are engaged by the Hunting Act, although they concluded that the government was justified in introducing the law.
Countryside Alliance Chief Executive Simon Hart commented: “We are confident of this case. The High Court accepted that the Hunting Act would have a long-term negative effect on the lives of many in the rural community in England and Wales.
“We will argue against the High Court’s finding that there was a legitimate aim to the Hunting Act, and that it was a proportionate measure. Several MPs have themselves identified their motives in voting for the Hunting Act – and far from proving a legitimate aim this shows that the Act was based on prejudice rather than principle.
“There is no evidence to suggest that it has or will prevent unnecessary suffering – in fact it seems likely that it is already having a negative impact on animal welfare.”