Plucky anti-badger cull protesters are taking part in a 10-day walk from Gloucester to London to highlight what they feel is a ‘brutal and barbaric’ government policy. The protest will be arriving in Henley on Tuesday 27 around 4pm and on Wednesday 28 May outside the Natwest Bank in Market Place from 12 noon with a speech by Dominic Dyer, CEO Badger Trust/Policy Advisor to Care for the Wild.
The determined dozen, organised by wildlife campaigner Julie Buxton and led by Ama Menec, Chair of TBVAC Devon, will be walking 112 miles from the heart of the cull zone in Gloucester to the doors of Westminster. Among the protesters is a 64-year-old Parkinson’s sufferer on a mobility scooter.
They will be joined by other protesters along the way, and aim to raise funds for the Stop the Cull fight, raise public awareness of alternative ways to tackle TB in cattle, promote the need for increased biosecurity on farms and hold demonstrations and other events as they go.
Julie Buxton, who last year organised a massively successful anti-cull protest in Birmingham, said:
“The Great Badger Trail shows the determination of the people in the Stop the Cull movement. We will stop the badger cull and show how brutal and cruel this barbaric, unscientific policy is. The continued slaughtering of a protected species, in the name of a disease it is not responsible for spreading, is not acceptable in a civilised society.
“As recent evidence from Wales shows, increased bio- security and vaccination is the solution and this is the message that the walkers will be spreading as they travel to Westminster. We’ll welcome anyone en route to come and join us, walk for a bit or just have a chat!”
Explaining why she got involved, Ama Menec said:
“The idea had me jumping around the room with glee at the prospect of having a march from Gloucester to London. People out there think the cull is all over but we know it’s not. We are a small army but as we move across the country we will grow and grow.
“We will hold workshops, badger ecology talks, hand out my leaflet on ‘20 ways to combat TB in cattle’ and we will continue to shout ‘Save the Badger’ until the government listens and stops this bloody cull.”
Leading anti-cull campaigner Dominic Dyer, of the Badger Trust and Care for the Wild, said: “This is a fantastic protest which shows the determination, spirit and commitment of normal people who are completely opposed to this shameful cull.
“We’ve seen Badger Army marches taking place around the country, but this is going to the whole next level, and hopefully many people will tag along and show the government what England really thinks about this unscientific and unnecessary cull.”
Julie Buxton added: “The marchers are determined, organised and supported every step of the way by the ever increasing tide of the British public, major organisations such as Animal Aid, Team Badger, Lush, The Badger Trust, Care for the Wild and others who object to this flagrant attack on a protected species despite the scientific evidence against it.”
The Great Badger Trail starts in Gloucester on 22 May, then moves to Cheltenham, Northleach, Witney (David Cameron’s Constituency), Oxford, Wallingford, Henley on Thames, Maidenhead, Slough and Hounslow before finishing at Westminster on 31st May – the day before the cull licences are due to start again.