HSA news release 30th December 2002
East Surrey, Saturday 28th December 2002:
40 Police (including 2 mounted)
36 hunt riders
And a rapidly decreasing budget!
This was not a scene from a Benny Hill TV show - it was actually what happened at last Saturday's meet of the old surrey and burstow hunt in Surrey.
'Led' by Inspector (?) Keith Stribblehill, approximately 40 hapless police officers (including 2 mounted) wandered aimlessly around the Surrey countryside searching for the non-existent sabs who were attending a different hunt. The day provided a stark example of what can happen when hunts govern police strategy and the police are 'intelligence led'!
On hand to record this costly farce were 3 hunt monitors with video cameras. They were also on hand to capture the hunt killing a fox on land where they are apparently not permitted to hunt - something the Police riders conveniently ignored.
You could be forgiven for thinking that Surrey was an otherwise crime free county, but some officers on the ground are plainly embarrassed to be seen serving the hunt so blatantly and helping them kill foxes rather than catching murderers, rapists and burglars etc. However, just as many seem to delight in aggressively intimidating sabs and making ridiculous, arbitrary arrests – but when they are drafted in from all over Surrey and often on their first hunt maybe we shouldn’t be surprised. Perhaps the hunt will offer to ‘blood’ them as a reward for their first kill.
We guess that at some point, Probably around the end of the financial year, the upper echelons of the Surrey police will realise they could have saved a lot of tax-payers money and freed officers for more important duties by abandoning the current pro-hunt over-policing policy and reverting to how things were before the new chief constable and pressure from the hunt started.
Before this sinks in however, many hundreds of thousands of pounds will be wasted by them.
Are you a journalist? like to think of yourself as 'investigative' and/or impartial? then why not ask Surrey police why they are throwing taxpayers' money down the drain every day a hunt is out in Surrey?!
Are you a Surrey County taxpayer? why not contact the police or the Surrey Police Authority to see whether they know or care how much money is being wasted on supporting the fox hunts in Surrey?
Surrey Police Authority
PO Box 412
Tel: 01483 482151
Fax: 01483 482027
Surrey Police HQ
Tel: 01483 571212
e-mail: chief constable