Joint letter to National Trust

Five leading animal protection organisations have joined us in speaking out against the National Trust's plans to kill wild boar at their Stourhead Estate in Wiltshire.

Dear Mr Parker,

We are writing to you to express our shared concern over reports of The National Trust planning to cull wild boar on the Stourhead Estate. We strongly object to this cull and call for an immediate halt to plans to kill the wild boar. We feel that the cull is misguided and immoral, and goes against many of the purposes of the National Trust. 

To wipe out sentient beings because they apparently make a few feel uncomfortable is absurd.  Wild boar are notoriously shy, making it difficult for even wildlife photographers to capture photos of them in the UK. They avidly avoid humans, and attacks in the UK are extremely rare. In fact, we have only been able to find a single report in the media about an injury caused by a wild boar in recent times. Such drastic action from the National Trust would suggest that there have been dozens of attacks, but the fact remains that confrontations are an extreme rarity.

The National Trust says that it aims to help restore and protect our national heritage. The Trust has also outlined¬†its¬†focus on ‚Äėnature friendly‚Äô lands and¬†its¬†plans to help reverse the decline in wildlife across¬†all¬†land in its ownership. To then go on to hire a marksman¬†to slaughter rare British wildlife¬†who are¬†present on National Trust¬†land¬†would not only be¬†counterproductive, but would also directly¬†contradict¬†this commitment.¬†

We call on the National Trust to end its plans for a boar cull, and instead redirect the funds that would be used on tragically bringing a premature end to the lives of these rare creatures, into educating both the public, and the National Trust’s own staff about wild boar, understanding their behaviour and how to properly and safely interact with them.

Yours sincerely,

Isobel Hutchinson, Director, Animal Aid

Claire Bass, Executive Director, Humane Society International UK (HSI UK)

Philip Mansbridge, UK Director, International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW)

Elisa Allen, Director, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)

Juliet Gellatley, Founder and Director, Viva!

Dr Mark Jones, veterinarian and Head of Policy at Born Free