In the past pigeon shooters have been mistaken for terrorists and police time wasted swooping on wild fowlers.If they don’t understand the law, isn’t that a failure of their senior officers and their trainers?
There is also a growing problem in policing rural areas because city-based officers do not understand the law around wildlife crime and fail to take poaching seriously.
The National Gamekeepers’ Organisation will be giving talks around the country on how to identify a driven shoot or a night fox shoot, so that no more tax payers' money is wasted.It’s good of them to do this, but it should be utterly unnecessary. This simply shouldn’t happen.
The representative body for gamekeeping in England and Wales will show the police which traps are legal and explain the law around wildlife crime such as illegally poisoning birds of prey.Good god, if they don’t know how to do their jobs, it shouldn’t be civilians that have to teach them!
Already Devon and Cornwall, Hertfordshire, Sussex, Essex, Lincolnshire and Derbyshire police forces have expressed interest in courses.I can see it from the gamekeepers point of view. They would like to reduce the number of cockups affecting their members.
Wouldn't it be nice if the police took the initiative in this, though?
Lindsay Waddell, Chairman of the NGO, said the half-day free course will include tips on how to identify field sports such as a rough shoot.Yet another reason to ensure that Sir Paul Stephenson never gets his way on the subject of restrictions on actions against the police…
Police will be shown the type of tweeds and camouflage shooting parties use and talked through the law on traps and birds
“We are doing this for gamekeeping and for the whole rural community,” he said.
“The police want to do their best but with staff cutbacks and many officers having no background in the countryside there have been bad misunderstandings in the recent past and sometimes wrongful arrests. The obvious thing is to explain to the police what gamekeepers do, what the law says and how we can help each other.”