HC Deb 27 February 2001 vol 363 cc792-824
Mr. Lidington

I beg to move amendment No. 76, in page 3, line 2, at end insert—

'Hunting which begins in Scotland

.—A person does not commit an offence under paragraph I if he hunts a wild mammal with a dog and his hunting of that mammal began in Scotland.'.

Madam Deputy Speaker

With this it will be convenient to discuss amendment No. 77, in page 3, line 2, at end insert—

'Hunting which begins and ends in Scotland

.—(1) Subject to sub -paragraph (3), a person does not commit an offence under paragraph 1 if he hunts a wild mammal with a dog in England only incidentally in the course of a hunt which begins and ends in Scotland.

(2) A hunt begins in Scotland if the pursuit of the wild mammal begins in Scotland.

(3) A hunt ends—

  1. (a) when the wild mammal is killed, or
  2. (b) by a decision, to stop hunting

and no offence is committed under paragraph 1 if the hunt begins in Scotland and the wild mammal is killed in England.

(4) A wild mammal Hay not be dug out or bolted in England in the course of a hunt which begins and ends in Scotland.

(5) Where sub—paragraph (1) applies, no offence shall be committed under paragraph 2, 3 or 4.'.

Mr. Lidington

This couple of amendments deal with hunts that begin in Scotland. They seek to address the problem that would arise were we to have different laws governing hunting with hounds on the two sides of the Anglo-Scottish border.

Under amendment No. 76, an offence would not be committed if somebody hunted a wild mammal with a dog and that hunt began in Scotland. Under amendment No. 77, we try to approach the problem slightly differently. It is a more restrictive attempt to tackle the problem, and provides that no offence would be committed where a hunt both began and ended in Scotland, but where the pursuit of the fox, which is the mammal that we are talking about in these circumstances, continued over the English border during the course of the chase.

The Scottish Parliament has responsibility for the law on hunting north of the border. Recent reports of its deliberations show that if a new law is introduced in Edinburgh it is likely to differ significantly from the complete ban proposed in the Bill now before the House of Commons, which raises some practical difficulties.

Currently, eight packs of foxhounds hunt in areas either adjacent to or over the border between England and Scotland. The remote upland terrain in those areas is precisely the type of land over which, as Lord Burns concluded, lamping would be an impractical method of fox control. That region contains Hadrian's wall, which is a major tourist attraction popular with walkers, so the safety of humans would be at issue if farmers and landowners had to resort to lampin or other forms of shooting as an alternative method of fox control to hunting.

The border is not fenced and it is not marked out along fields and moorlands. If people in Scotland lawfully take part in a hunt after a ban has come into force in England and Wales, how are they to know when they are moving from one jurisdiction to another? A number of detailed, practical questions are raised as one explores the difficulties that would be faced were different laws on hunting to be in operation in England and in Scotland.

If a hunt started in Scotland but the dogs crossed the border into England, would an offence be committed? It has been made clear to us during our deliberations in Standing Committee that the act of hunting that is to form the criminal offence under paragraph 1 of the schedule does not have to involve the killing of a mammal. The pursuit of a mammal by hounds would be sufficient to bring that activity within the ambit of the Bill and make it a criminal offence as defined in paragraph 1. What would happen if a hunt started legally on one side of the border and moved into England? Would a criminal ffence be committed or not?

Would an offence be committed if the people carrying out the hunting remained in Scotland but at any time during the chase the dogs crossed the border into England? That could be particularly complicated if a group of people were out hunting lawfully in Scotland and some of them followed the dogs across the border into England while others stayed behind in Scotland. All would be taking part in the same hunt, but would some of them be subject to criminal penalties under the Bill and others not?

The purpose of the amendments is to allow us to debate these issues, which will be of great importance to, admittedly, a small number of people in border areas. They suggest a way in which the House and the Government could deal with some of the problems that may arise.

Mr. Hogg

May I suggest to my hon. Friend that if the House does not accept the amendment, we will be derogating the authority of the Scottish Parliament? In reality, unless we accept the amendment, those who support the Scottish hounds will not be able to hunt close to the border. That will diminish the freedoms of Scots, which should, under devolution, be a matter for the Scottish Parliament.

Mr. Lidington

My right hon. and learned Friend makes an important point. Without the amendments, the potential for conflict will be inherent in the Bill, because there will be different criminal regimes on either side of the border.

How will the offences relating to the use of land for hunting be affected by the border situation? Some properties span the border. If the Bill becomes law, a landowner who gives permission for hunting on his property in England will be committing a criminal offence.

Mr. Dominic Grieve (Beaconsfield)

The matter goes further than that. Along the Tweed, in so far as hounds might go into the river, the border is not fixed. The stream of the Tweed fluctuates, so one might find oneself on an island in that river. One might also discover that the boundary has shifted from one side of that island to the other. I encountered that fact as a barrister while litigating in respect of fishing rights on the Tweed. Although the boundary was fixed by a joint commission in the 1840s, changes in the course of the Tweed meant that an island that had previously been assumed to lie wholly in Scotland was found to lie partly in Scotland and partly in England.

Mr. Lidington

I am very grateful to my hon. Friend because his intervention shows that we are not discussing some abstract possibility. He refers to a legal case that arose from a dispute over where the border lay in respect of islands in the River Tweed. Given the experience that he relates, and given the fact that Members on both sides of the argument in the Standing Committee accepted that, should the Bill become law, there would be a risk of malicious information being laid against people in an attempt to convict them of criminal offences, we are right to devote time to debating the matter, not least because we had fewer than 15 minutes in Committee to discuss the question of the Anglo-Scottish border before the guillotine fell, cutting off further debate.

On the question of the border between England and Scotland, a landowner in Northumberland who gave permission to hunt across his property would be subject to the criminal offence in paragraph 2, but let us consider the position of a landowner with land spanning the border who acceded to the request of a hunt lawful in Scotland to hunt foxes with hounds across his land, only to discover that, during the lawful hunt on his Scottish property, those taking part or the hounds had strayed, either deliberately or by accident, on to his English property.

Would that landowner have committed an offence in such circumstances? What evidence would he have to present to the prosecuting authorities in England to show that he had made it clear to those taking part in the hunt that they were allowed to cross only his land in Scotland, not that south of the border? Would any duty fall on him to mark out the border across his property so that he could be assured that he was fulfilling his duty under the law and could therefore show that he had not committed a criminal offence?

Mr. Tony Banks (West Ham)

The hon. Gentleman makes an interesting point that is worth listening to, but what would happen if a stag hunted from England crossed the border into Scotland, where it is unlawful to hunt deer? That is a real situation that could arise now.

8.45 pm
Mr. Lidington

I think the hon. Gentleman is grabbing at a red herring. I understand that there is no organised stag hunting in Northumberland or Cumberland, which means that the question he raises would not arise. In any event, it is a question for Ministers to answer on behalf of the Government, because it flows from devolution. In the new constitutional circumstances, the House must be careful about addressing issues that will be affected by the existence of what are clearly different jurisdictions.

Mr. Russell Brown

The hon. Gentleman bases his argument on foxhunting, but, as my hon. Friend the Member for West Ham (Mr. Banks) implies, the Bill is about hunting wild mammals, and deer fall into that category. As the hunting of deer with hounds in Scotland has been banned since 1959, it is widely assumed that the law in Scotland may be different from that in England.

Mr. Lidington

The hon. Gentleman is wrong to assume that organised hunting of deer with hounds takes place anywhere in the border regions.

Mr. Peter Atkinson (Hexham)

I can confirm that no hunting of deer with hounds takes place in any of the border counties. It does not take place in Northumberland or Cumberland; it happens only in the south-west of England.

Mr. Lidington

I am grateful to my hon. Friend.

I have based my remarks on foxhunting because it presents us, as a legislature, with a real issue. Foxhunting with hounds takes place in the border regions of both Scotland and England, and across the border. The practical issue that the House and the Government must address is, I submit, different from the theoretical speculations of the hon. Members for West Ham (Mr. Banks) and for Dumfries (Mr. Brown).

Mr. Atkinson

I should point out that one pack in my constituency, the Border Foxhounds, has hunting country on both sides of the border. Other packs hunt on one side but may cross; this pack crosses the border regularly, as a matter of course.

Mr. Lidington

That reinforces my point.

How would the ban be enforced in practice, in terms of the border between England and Scotland? If that border is not clearly marked along its length, people travelling in upland country will not be sure when they have moved from England into Scotland or vice versa. One can conjure up odd visions of police constables being deputed to stomp around farmland and moorland in galoshes and plastic macs, spreading out from path to path to make sure that the boundary was policed. I am prepared to accept that that is not the Government's intention, and I am sure that it is not the intention of any chief constable on either side of the border; but if there is one criminal law in England and another in Scotland, people will go to the police and allege that this or that group of individuals intends to hunt illegally in England from a starting point in Scotland. What are the police supposed to do in such circumstances?

My amendment would introduce clarity into an area of the law that would otherwise be confused and ambiguous. Moreover, it has the great merit of enabling people on both sides of the border between England and Scotland to know exactly where they stand and what the law requires them to do, or to desist from doing.

Mr. Beith

Mine is one of three constituencies directly affected by the subject matter of the amendment, the other two being Hexham and Penrith and The Border. Those constituencies are in England, are therefore affected by the Bill and border Scotland. In each case, there are substantial hunting activities on both sides of the border.

Appreciation of where the border lies is not widespread. This evening, talking to one of my hon. Friends, I was shocked to discover that he used the expression, "north of Hadrian's wall" in the mistaken belief that all that lay north of the wall was in Scotland. Admittedly, he was from the south coast, but it showed a distinct lack of appreciation. I do not think that many people appreciate that, for example, in parts of the area that we are discussing, it is possible to travel due north from Scotland to England, or due south from England to Scotland. The border follows a complicated line, which in most areas is not marked.

In some of the Cheviot areas, along the border, there is a two-strand wire fence that any small animal would have no difficulty in getting through. In much of the border country, there is no marking at all. As the hon. Member for Beaconsfield (Mr. Grieve) has pointed out from his legal experience, there have been cases about islands in the Tweed. The border in the Tweed is a shifting border, or at least the land shifts. The border may stay in the same place, but the land shifts and that makes it difficult to define it, so we have a practical problem.

Eight packs of foxhounds hunt adjacent to and across the border: the Bewcastle, the North Tyne, the Border, the North Northumberland and College Valley, the Berwickshire, the Jed Forest, the Buccleuch and the Liddesdale. The West Percy in my constituency comes very close to the border and, I suspect, will face the same problem.

Many of those hunts regularly cross the border. The hon. Member for Hexham (Mr. Atkinson) said that Border Foxhounds hunts in country that crosses the border and therefore, as a matter of course, operates on both sides of the border. The same is true of the North Northumberland and College Valley hunt, which is kennelled in my constituency, but has country on both sides of the border, which is not clearly marked.

There is, therefore, a practical problem. Although the hon. Member for West Ham (Mr. Banks) was right to point out that, for many years, there have been differences in the law between England and Scotland, the one that he cited has no practical effect because there is no stag hunting in the border areas of England. For that matter, I do not think that there was much in the border areas of Scotland before it was banned; it was mainly a highland activity. The deer legislation is drafted in such a way that, unlike this legislation, it does not ban deer stalking. There is deer stalking in forest areas in the borders. Dogs may be used to assist in the locating of deer prior to their being shot. That matter is intended to be dealt with by a later amendment.

I was slightly concerned when the Minister indicated two things that I had not realised. The first was that it had been his intention all along to ban deer stalking, but that he had now changed his mind. The second was that that was only his view, that it was entirely a matter for the House and that there was no Government view on whether the Bill should ban deer stalking, but we will come to that later.

There is a practical problem in relation to foxhunting. There is a practical problem for a further reason, which is emphasised in the Burns report: the nature of the country in the Cheviot and other areas. Few areas in England are more wild than the Cheviot summits or the area north of Spadeadam Waste in the constituency of the hon. Member for Hexham. Fox control in those areas is very difficult and lamping is unsuitable. That is made clear in the Burns report. There was a pretty heavy steer in the report towards tolerating some sort of hunting of foxes with hounds in those upland areas. We have passed the point where the Government would have accepted that, but what they must recognise is that, in country on both sides of the border, dogs have to be used to locate foxes and, indeed, to deal with other pests.

That brings me to wider issues of pest control. Although we have looked at the matter primarily in relation to foxhunting itself and the difficulty faced by the hunts, gamekeepers, countryside wardens and others involved in pest control who operate on the border will face the problem of the difference in the law. It seems inconceivable that legislation will be passed by the Scottish Parliament that does what the Hunting Bill does—which is to insist that if a rabbit is flushed out, it is immediately shot with a gun. I cannot imagine that the Scottish Parliament will pass such legislation. I also think that it is now unlikely that there will be a total ban on hunting in Scotland. It is a matter of speculation, and hon. Members cannot assume that there will be comparable legislation in Scotland.

Therefore, if a gamekeeper with a dog is dealing with rabbits and reaches the border, although there was not necessarily a requirement for him to carry a gun or to use it on his side of the border, the moment the dog chases the rabbit into England the gamekeeper will have to shoot at the rabbit. It is not sensible to put that gamekeeper in such a situation.

The legislation would have a similar effect in relation to the celebrated topic of rats in cellars, on which we shall vote later. If a dog goes underground in pursuit of a rat and crosses the border—which is perfectly easy to do along the banks of the Tweed, for example, or in any other rough country—the situation would immediately change. The dog would have to be called off, or the gamekeeper would have to prove that he did not have any intent that the dog should cross the border.

Much will turn on the defence that can be used in court. In many cases, it could be difficult if the prosecution insists that, as the gamekeeper was so near the border, he must have known that there was a risk of the dog crossing it. Unfortunately, however, once a gamekeeper is employed in a particular place, he has to deal with the rodents and rabbits in that place. Consequently, his work may be along the border. In such circumstances, there is no way in which he can simply exclude the possibility of his dog crossing the border.

Mr. Hogg

Does the right hon. Gentleman therefore agree that, in reality, unless we accept the amendment, the Bill's effect would be to prevent the gamekeeper or anyone else engaged in country sports from practicing them close to the border, for fear that they would contravene the criminal law in England? Is that not to derogate from the rights of Scots?

Mr. Beith

A solicitor might advise the gamekeeper's employer that it was unsafe to allow his gamekeeper to work in the usual way, close to the border area. I put it no stronger than that. It is similar to the situation in relation to many issues. Nowadays, employers have to take legal advice or they take risks. A solicitor might advise that it is unwise to allow such work as one might be unable to sustain a defence in court. That in itself is a limitation of British democracy.

I do not, however, entirely follow the right hon. and learned Member for Sleaford and North Hykeham (Mr. Hogg) in making a constitutional issue of that, as it seems that there will inevitably be some differences on either side of the border. The job of this place when passing legislation is to consider the practical implications and decide whether the law goes too far in creating practical difficulties with far-reaching consequences for people on the other side of the border. Therefore, although the point is a genuine one, I do not believe that it is constitutionally improper for the Government to legislate differently for our side of the border. We just have to consider the practical consequences.

I contend that, if we do not have some provision along the lines of that suggested by amendment No. 76, the practical consequences could be difficult. If the Bill is passed without the amendment, it would extend across the border difficulties that gamekeepers will have in England. The Bill would affect gamekeepers on the other side of the border who could otherwise perform their work in their traditional way, and might expose them to legal challenge.

I therefore agree with the right hon. and learned Gentleman's contention, but with a slight modification. I say that we would be creating an unfair and unreasonable practical difficulty if we did not adjust the legislation to meet that particular case. Although that is not the biggest issue raised for those categories of people by the legislation, it is a real practical issue.

If I were a member of the North Northumberland and College Valley hunt, I would want to retain if I possibly could the hunt's rights in its own country, on the Scottish side of the border, to continue hunting. However, the kennels are in England. As there is now so little country to hunt, the hunt can hunt only one day a fortnight rather than a couple of days a week. Nevertheless, each time we hunt, we take the pack and the horses over on to the Scottish side—south into Scotland. Does that show an intent to hunt in England? I am not a hunting person, but I am putting myself in the mind of people who are. Proving one's innocence in court will be difficult, and so genuine rights are put at risk. Any cautious solicitor will tell people not to risk any such action, as a successful prosecution could ensue. It is therefore worth pursuing a proposal along the lines of the amendment, and I hope that Ministers will be sympathetic, as they have been to some of my other suggestions.

9 pm

Mr. Gerald Howarth (Aldershot)

I rise to support what my hon. Friend the Member for Aylesbury (Mr. Lidington) said in moving the amendment, and I also agree with the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Mr. Beith).

I speak tonight not as the Member of Parliament for Aldershot, but as the son of a borderer, and the grandson of a Scottish border farmer. My family was one of those that did so much to create that beautiful border countryside that lies just north of the Carter bar and runs up to Edinburgh. They will clearly be affected if the ban were to be implemented by the Scottish Parliament, and the problems will be worse if the amendment, or one like it, is not accepted by the Government.

I spoke tonight to my uncle, Charlie Douglas, a former master of the Jed Forest hunt. He tells me that the hunt often crosses the border. However, it is not always possible to delineate where that lies, as the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed made clear and as I may have told the House before.

When the Ministry of Defence was seeking to establish precisely where the border ran over the Cheviot hills, officials had to call on another of my uncles. The Otterburn range extends right to that point, and my uncle, Garry Douglas, a tenant farmer on the Roxburgh estates, was responsible for farming the land right up on the border. That was sometime in the 1950s. The right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed referred to a two-stranded wire fence, and that it is probably the only delineation of the location of the border.

There is therefore a real problem in defining the point at which people who are legitimately engaged in the lawful pursuit of hunting in Scotland become criminals in England. As the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed said, there are eight hunts in the area. Four are on the Scottish side. They meet regularly, very close to the border.

Why should people who hunt there have to change tens or hundreds of years of practice and move away from their traditional hunting grounds to go and hunt where they can be sure that they will not run the risk of becoming criminals in England? That could happen if their hounds chase after a fox which, not being clear of the geography and not having global positioning system equipment to guide it, runs off into England.

Unless the amendment is accepted, the Bill will restrict the rights of people in Scotland to pursue their lawful activity without incurring the risk of prosecution. The Bill will require them to rearrange their hunting so that there is no conceivable risk of straying anywhere over the border. That is an important consideration. Hunting is a very popular sport in that part of the world, which fits Lord Burns' description of those remote areas where hunting is so much part of the glue and fabric of rural and agricultural society. The Bill threatens that activity.

Hunting provides support for the local economy. It not only provides support for those who supply saddlery and farrier services but attracts foreign tourists who bring their foreign currency into the border area. That is also a help.

There is a real risk that we are in danger of legislating to make criminals of people who are perfectly entitled to pursue their lawful activity north of the border. I am astonished that the Government have not already addressed the issue. As I recall, on previous Bills brought before the House, such points have been specifically addressed.

Mr. Hogg

May I remind my hon. Friend that when we considered the private Member's Bill of the hon. Member for Worcester (Mr. Foster), we dealt with the position in Northern Ireland and the problem that arose with regard to the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic?

Mr. Howarth

My right hon. and learned Friend is entirely right. The Government owe us an explanation as to why they have no, recognised this difficulty, given that it has already been drawn to their attention on previous occasions. As with so much else that the Government do, they really do not care. They certainly do not care about the countryside. They will simply ram the legislation through. I expect that they will vote against the amendment, quite oblivious to the very real risks that would be run by those engaged in lawful hunting in Scotland if their hounds or the fox strayed across the border.

I hope that the Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department, will not tell us that we are talking about something theoretical that is unlikely to happen. [Interruption.] The hon. Lady indicates that she will not say that. That is encouraging.

Lest anyone believes that the police officers will not be interested in pursuing these matters to ensure that no criminal activity takes place, I have to say that plenty of hunt saboteurs will congregate in that part of the world. All the hunt saboteurs who will be out of a job in England and Wales if this illiberal and obscene measure goes through will gravitate up to Scotland to disrupt the lawful hunting that takes place there.

We all know how these people work. They will go out in droves to watch the hunting. They will presumably mark out the border or have extraordinarily detailed maps of where they think the border is. They will monitor the hunting that takes place, report to the police anybody who strays across the border and demand that the police prosecute. So the police will have that pressure placed on them. We know that they are unhappy with the measure in its totality in any case.

People in Scotland will find it extremely disturbing to have imported all these ghastly hunt saboteurs. I have never understood how people who call themselves hunt saboteurs could do other than fall foul of the law, for sabotage, I thought, was an unlawful activity in this country.

If I were the chief constable of the Lothian and Borders police force, I would be extremely concerned about all those people coming across the border if the Bill goes through. They would cause mayhem for the police, seeking, in particular, to find those who were hunting while straying across the border.

I feel very strongly about the personal dimension. I do not see why members of my family who fought for the freedom of these islands should be subjected to this outrageous attempt to criminalise them. If they pursue their perfectly legitimate activity in Scotland, they run the risk of being criminalised because of straying inadvertently across the border. My uncles did not fight in the second world war so that such a gross intrusion into their freedom could take place—[Interruption.] The Minister shakes her head. I can tell her that some of us do not just recite the briefings; some of us feel strongly about the matter—[interruption.] It is not the Minister's position to tell me sit down. We feel strongly about this important issue. The Minister has had time to address it, but she and her Government have constantly failed to do so. I congratulate my hon. Friends on tabling the amendment, which I shall support.

Mr. Hogg

I shall be brief. I support the amendments proposed by my hon. Friends. Of the two, amendment No. 77 is to be preferred but I shall accept amendment No. 76 if the Question is put on it.

The points are simple. Foxes do not respect frontiers. As my hon. Friend the Member for Aldershot (Mr. Howarth) has demonstrated from his family experience, foxes cross the boundary between England and Scotland—a fact that comes as no surprise to anyone who knows about foxhunting or any country activity.

Whatever the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Mr. Beith) says, the plain truth is that we are diminishing the freedoms of Scots. No Scots hunt could sensibly hunt close to the border where it might cross the boundary. That is also true of gamekeepers—the example cited by the right hon. Gentleman—or of people who are using hounds or dogs for rabbiting. Such people will cross the border. Having done so in the course of hunting, people who started a lawful activity at 10 o'clock in the morning will suddenly find that they are engaged in unlawful activity at 11 o'clock. The only sensible conclusion that they could come to would be that they must withdraw from the frontier, so that there is no risk of crossing it. At that point, we are derogating from the freedoms of people in the United Kingdom—for no good reason.

For that reason, the Government ought to accept the amendment. They are in no position to say that they did not know about the matter or have had no opportunity to think about it. As I pointed out to my hon. Friend the Member for Aldershot, that prec ise difficulty was identified during proceedings on the private Member's Bill promoted by the hon. Member for Worcester (Mr. Foster), when we drew attention to such problems in relation to the border between the Province of Ulster and the Republic of Ireland.

Difficult definitional questions will arise if we do not accept the amendment. Let us assume that the gamekeeper, referred to by the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, or my Scots hunt cross the border and that the person in charge of eithr the gamekeeper's dog or the hounds wants to recover the straying animals. At what point in that process of recovery does the huntsman or the gamekeeper cease to be a person hunting and become a person recovering the dog or the hound? Presumably, one has to address that principal motive. That person began by hunting and then crossed the border. Was he still hunting or was he trying to recover his hounds? That is a difficult question.

We do not want to encourage prosecution. We do not want to diminish the freedoms of Scotsmen. The only sensible course is to accept a provision such as amendment No. 76 or amendment No. 77. If the Government say that those provisions are not well formulated and that we should reconsider them, my response is that they have access to parliamentary counsel so that is the course they should adopt.

Mr. Beith

There is not much difference between the right hon. and learned Gentleman and me on this issue. We are talking of the freedom not only of Scotsmen, but that of any person—Scots or English—who chooses to exercise his right to behave lawfully on the Scottish side of the border. It would be lawful for an Englishman living in England to offer to do some rabbit clearance for someone on the Scottish side of the border.

Mr. Hogg

The right hon. Gentleman is right. We are creating a trap for our fellow citizens, but it is not one without cure. We could remedy the matter by accepting an amendment along the lines of those proposed by my hon. Friend the Member for Aylesbury (Mr. Lidington).

Mr. Grieve

I am aware that the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Mr. Beith) will know more about such matters than me, but my recollection—from staying with friends who live close to the border—is that several farms straddle the border. The gamekeeper would thus be both a Scottish and an English gamekeeper.

Mr. Hogg

Absolutely. My hon. Friend is quite right.

I should like to make a final point about fox sanctuaries. If foxes can be lawfully hunted one side of the border, but not on the other, they will congregate in England. That will not be terribly popular with English farmers close to the border, as my hon. Friend the Member for Hexham (Mr. Atkinson) will tell us. In fact, the farmers will then shoot foxes with a will, and there will be a butchery of foxes, which is not manifestly in the interests of the fox population.

The Minister has got herself into a pickle, but she has no possible excuse for that. She should accept the amendment; if she does not, she should table another one, and if she does not say that she will do so, we will vote against her.

9.15 pm
Mr. Peter Atkinson

This is a wonderfully esoteric issue. Amendments Nos. 76 and 77 address a problem that has existed for many hundreds of years, although the dispute over the border between England and Scotland has entailed a lot bloody history and loss of life over many years and I do not think that even the amendments could end that tide of history.

If I had known that my hon. Friend the Member for Aldershot (Mr. Howarth) was related to the Douglases, I would not have been so kind to him during my time in Parliament. My mother's side of the family is descended from another border family with whom the Douglases were in something of a state of enmity. They were an interesting family because they lived on both sides of the border and made a steady living during the middle ages by joining the Scots when they raided and pillaged England, and joining the English when they raided Scotland. They did very well until the forebears of the right hon. Member for Devizes (Mr. Ancram) hanged them all at a place called Kershopefoot just after 1620.

The serious matter is that, as the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Mr. Beith) has said, the border is simply not defined. It is extremely difficult to know where the border lies amid the moorlands and forests that cross it. Indeed, the borderline has never been fixed. There is an approximate line on a map, but that is it. A fence, which still more or less exists, was put up before the war to define landowning interests, but in practice the border is not defined. In fact, a large chunk of the border was historically known as the debatable land, because it was never agreed. It was only after the union of the Crowns that an attempt was made to define the border exactly.

The old border law of hot trod allows people on one side of the border to pursue a criminal on the other side. It is only, I think, in the past five years that the problem of Scottish police officers operating in England and English police officers operating in Scotland has been solved. I understand that a Scottish police officer called to help the Northumbrian police in Berwick-upon-Tweed had no right as a constable until only a few years ago, when that legal anomaly was put right. There is a vast amount of historical confusion about the location of the border.

There are predominantly two hunts in my constituency. The Border Foxhounds, which I mentioned in an intervention on my hon. Friend the Member for Aylesbury (Mr. Lidington), has defined country on both sides of the border, so it regularly hunts across it. Other hunts will cross the border during their daily activities. It would be absolutely nonsensical if it were only legal to take a fox on the Scottish side when a pack of hounds hunting near the border split, as sometimes happens: if another fox appears, one half of the pack may go after that fox while the other half goes after the original fox. No huntsman wants his or her pack to split, but it happens from time to time. In such cases, it is not the intention but the inevitable consequence to hunt on both sides of the border.

As I understand it, the proposals of the Scottish Parliament represent a move to a compromise and the licensing of hunts. The Border Foxhounds and other hunts would no doubt be licensed to perform their duties on the Scottish side of the border, but not on the English side. Where landholdings cross the border, that would make fox control extremely difficult.

Incidentally, the Border Foxhounds hunts over the Otterburn military training range, which runs up to the border. The tenant farmers on the range have allowed the hunt to be their method of fox control. All the tenant farmers have a duty to control the foxes on their land and, as they have far better things to do than spend their time trying to hunt foxes, they leave the job to the Border Foxhounds, which is thoroughly efficient at controlling foxes in that area. We have debated the tamping of foxes, but one could not do that on the Otterburn training range. The Army runs night exercises there and people crawling round with high-powered lamps and rifles would not be conducive to the safety of the soldiers taking part in those exercises. The current proposals will create difficulties for the hunts that operate on the border.

Although I am not a lawyer, I am surrounded by lawyers and that gives me some comfort. The Bill does not appear to resolve the question of intent. One may start to hunt on the Scottish side of the border and have no intention of hunting on the English side, but it is quite easy to cross the border without intending to do so.

The right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed also asked what would happen if the hounds were kennelled on the English side of the border, but were allowed to hunt only on the Scottish side. If they crossed the border during a hunt, would the fact that the kennels were on the English side where hunting was outlawed have an effect on the issue of intent? That is an interesting point. My hon. Friend the Member for Aldershot mentioned the importance of hunting as a social activity in the borders. It is an extremely remote part of the United Kingdom and people in the borders often live many miles from the nearest supermarket or entertainment facilities that are normally found in cities. The hunts play a key role in the social lift of the countryside. They run dances and their social activities are well patronised by many people even if they do not hunt themselves. Any attack on hunting will constitute an attack on an important part of social life in those areas.

The whole Bill is illiberal and disgraceful. If we are to make some sense of the nonsense in the Bill, I urge the Government to accept amendments Nos. 76 and 77.

Mr. Grieve

I am familiar with the area in question from my cousins who live in those parts. My right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Sleaford and North Hykeham (Mr. Hogg) has touched on the issue that I wish to discuss, which relates to our responsibility for the Scots and their activities. I think that the issue goes a little further than has been suggested so far, and merits some consideration.

In the proceeding; on the Scotland Act 1998, the point was frequently made that, although that measure altered the Act of Union by introducing a devolved Parliament in Edinburgh, the Act of Union and the intentions that underlay it survived in respect of those issues that were not touched by the 1998 Act. I clearly recollect from my study of history that one of the primary benefits that sold the Act of Union was the removal of the border as an impediment to movement. It may not have impeded reivers such as my ancestors in Roxburghshire—and we have heard something about those activities—because they were unlawful visitors. However, the miracle of the union of the two Crowns in the early 17th century was that an area that had been lawless was rendered lawful in a short time, and started to prosper agriculturally. The point has often been made that, although two different legal systems operate on either side of the border, the border has become one area for the purposes of inter-marriage and the movement of people across it. Indeed, the border is unmarked in most places and is, in practical terms, completely irrelevant.

It is right that we have a Scottish Parliament that passes laws for its part of the United Kingdom, but it has not passed any laws to ban foxhunting, which remains a lawful activity there. From my visits to Edinburgh as Conservative spokesman for Scotland, it is clear to me that Lord Watson's Bill may never reach the statute book, so hunting may never be banned in Scotland.

Although we respect—as the Government say they do—the intent behind the creation of the United Kingdom through the conjunction of the two realms, it is astonishing that we should decide in legislation involving England, which we are entitled to make, that no exception will be made for people in Scotland who unintentionally and inevitably cross the border while going about their lawful business. The Minister will probably say that nothing can be done about that, but it is a matter that is simple to address. In the context of the Government's stated policy on devolution and the preservation of the Union, it is bizarre that they cannot create an exception that enables traditional pursuits to take place in Scotland, even if they lap over the border. That would not cause frightful difficulties. I hope that the Minister will surprise us all and announce that the Government are pre pared to think about this issue. Their approach illustrates the petty-mindedness that has underlain everything to do with the Bill's passage through Parliament. The bigotry that has been exhibited has been woeful. I hope that we can achieve some common sense. It is possible to get this wretched Bill on the statute book and, at the same time, to provide a reasonable and common-sense exemption for traditional activities north of the border that respects the fact that the border is no more than a line on a map. That would not take us closer to putting up barbed-wire fences.

The Parliamentary Secretary, Lord Chancellor's Department (Jane Kennedy)

The amendments presuppose that hunting is banned in England but remains legal in Scotland. Amendment No. 76 would allow a hunt that began in Scotland to continue in England without an offence being committed. Amendment No. 77 defines when hunting would begin and end.

I am aware that the Scottish Parliament is considering a Bill on hunting with dogs. The hon. Members for Beaconsfield (Mr. Grieve) ana for Aylesbury (Mr. Lidington) speculated on what it might permit and on its fate. I do not want to predict the outcome of the Scottish Parliament's deliberations. The future of hunting with dogs in Scotland should be left to the Scottish Parliament to decide.

The amendments would allow a hunt that began in Scotland to continue into England without breaching the law that bans hunting with dogs in England and Wales. That cannot be right. The Bill's provisions extend to all of England and all of Wales. There is no reason why a person, because he commenced an activity in another country—in this case, Scotland—should be exempted from the intention of the House to ban hunting in England and Wales.

9.30 pm

If we took such a course, we should be creating a tremendous loophole which hunts in the border areas would be quick to exploit. They would ensure that they began their hunting on the Scottish side of the border, and would be able to hunt in England with impunity. Hunts that have hunt kennels located near to the border, such as those in the constituencies of the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Mr. Beith) and the hon. Member for Hexham (Mr. Atkinson), will be required to carry out their activities in Scotland, if Scottish legislation permits, in such a way to ensure that they do not inadvertently cross the border and hunt in England.

I am sorry to disappoint Opposition Members, but I cannot accept their arguments. The situation is far from unprecedented. My hon. Friend the Member for West Ham (Mr. Banks) said—the hon. Member for Aylesbury referred to the matter in his opening comments—that already there is a different legal regime operating in respect of animals on different sides of the border. There is legislation prohibiting the use of dogs to take and kill deer in any circumstances in Scotland, but we know that the activity is still legal in England and Wales.

Opposition Members argue that that is not a relevant example. However, that is a matter of opinion. I believe that it is a pertinent example. The right hon. Member for Berwick—upon—Tweed talked about gamekeepers chasing rabbits and rodents and argued that they would have particular problems in border areas. Several hon. Members asked where the border is drawn. As the right hon. Gentleman is well aware, we would shortly, if time permitted, be coming to amendments which would have the effect of allowing both unrestricted rodent hunting and unrestricted rabbit hunting. If the House decides to agree to those amendments, as I hope it will, the concerns that the right hon. Gentleman raised about gamekeepers will not arise.

It has been suggested that if hunting were legal on one side of the England-Scotland border but illegal on the other, there would be problems for the police as they tried to enforce the law. The members of the Committee and Members who have read the Official Report of our proceedings—I am sure that many have done so, but those who have not should read especially the proceedings of the final day, which I think they will find entertaining—will know that cross-border policing was referred to in Committee, under what is now clause 4, which relates to the extent of the Bill.

My hon. Friend the Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department explained in a letter that he sent to members of the Committee that cross-border policing is dealt with in part X of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994. That Act provides that the English police may execute warrants issued in England in Scotland, and vice versa. The Act also gives English police powers of arrest in Scotland in respect of offences committed in England provided that certain conditions are met—and, again, vice versa.

These powers apply to all relevant offences, and hunting with dogs will not be treated any differently. The police will be able to use the powers across the border irrespective of whether the conduct in question would constitute an offence had it occurred on that side of the border. There will be no problems for the police if different regimes apply on the two sides of the English-Scottish border.

Mr. Hogg


Jane Kennedy

I know that I shall regret doing so, but I give way to the right hon. and learned Gentleman.

Mr. Hogg

Let us take a Scots hunt that is hunting foxes. It crosses the border and the huntsman is aware that he has crossed the border. The hounds are chasing foxes in England. However, the huntsman wants to recall the hounds and take them back to Scotland. At what point does the huntsman cease to be a person hunting?

Jane Kennedy

I have already said that it is the responsibility of those undertaking hunting to ensure that their conduct does not become an offence. I do not think that that is difficult for the House to understand. I reiterate that there will be no problem for the police if different regimes apply on the two sides of the English-Scottish border.

The amendments have no basis in logic and would simply create a large loophole. If it is the will of the Westminster Parliament that an activity should not be permissible in England and Wales, that must be so. The fact that the activity began in another jurisdiction should not cut across this Parliament's wishes.

Mr. Grieve

I do not understand the Minister's final piece of reasoning. It can be the will of this Parliament to do what it likes. If this Parliament willed that hunting should be banned in England and Wales, but that, because of the problem of hunting on the border, there should be an exemption for Scottish hunts that crossed the border, there would be nothing abnormal or odd about it. Will the Minister reconcile those two concepts? I do not follow her argument.

Jane Kennedy

The amendments were tabled by Members who oppose the decision that the House took to support the third option. In my opinion, they are intended simply to provide a loophole that would allow individuals to continue foxhunting with hounds by beginning in Scotland and bringing the hunt into England. We should not accept an amendment that would cut across the wishes of this Parliament and 1 invite the hon. Member for Aylesbury to withdraw it.

Mr. Lidington

I am disappointed by the Minister's response. I should have understood it if she had said that amendment No. 76 gave too wide an exemption to the general prohibition defined in paragraphs 1 to 3 of the schedule. I do not understand, however, why she is not prepared to accept amendment No. 77, which provides a more limited and tightly defined exception, or willing to offer an alternative Government amendment if she believes ours to be technically defective.

I find it depressing that the Minister did not even pretend to address the range of detailed and practical issues raised by my right hon. and hon. Friends and by the right hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed (Mr. Beith). We received no answer to the issue of how people were expected to take decisions that the Minister expects them to take in order to keep within the law if they had no idea where the border lay. We received no answer to the intervention of my right hon. and learned Friend the Member for Sleaford and North Hykeham (Mr. Hogg) about the point at which someone would cease to be a participant in the hunt and became in law a person who was seeking to recall the hunt in order to comply with the law.

There were no answers to questions about the position of a landowner who gives permission to a Scottish hunt to hunt across his Scottish territories or about what he would have to do to ensure that he was protected if, deliberately or inadvertently, the hunt crossed to his properties on the English side of the border.

I had hoped to be able to seek leave to withdraw the amendments. I remain prepared to withdraw amendment No. 76, if I may press for a Division on the more tightly defined amendment No. 77, which would defeat the Minister's argument that passing the amendment would blow a massive hole in the principle of the Bill.

Mr. Speaker

It is quite in order for the hon. Gentleman to do so. With the leave of the House, he can seek to withdraw amendment No. 76, and he can then move amendment No. 77 formally.

Mr. Lidington

I beg to ask leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Amendment proposed: No. 77, in page 3, line 2, at end insert—

'Hunting which begins and ends in Scotland

—(1) Subject to sub-paragraph (3), a person does not commit an offence under paragraph 1 if he hunts a wild mammal with a dog in England only incidentally in the course of a hunt which begins and ends in Scotland.

(2) A hunt begins in Scotland if the pursuit of the wild mammal begins in Scotland.

(3) A hunt ends—

  1. (a) when the will mammal is killed, or
  2. (b) by a decision to stop hunting

and no offence is committed under paragraph 1 if the hunt begins in Scotland and the wild mammal is killed in England.

(4) A wild mammal may not be dug out or bolted in England in the course of a hunt which begins and ends in Scotland.

(5) Where sub—paragraph (1) applies, no offence shall be committed under paragraph 2, 3 or 4;—[Mr. Lidington.]

Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The House divided: Ayes 135, Noes 312.

Division No. 132] [9.40 pm
Arbuthnot, Rt Hon James Gummer, Rt Hon John
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham) Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archie
Beith, Rt Hon A J Hammond, Philip
Bell, Martin (Tatton) Harris, Dr Evan
Bercow, John Harvey, Nick
Beresford, Sir Paul Hawkins, Nick
Blunt, Crispin Hayes, John
Body, Sir Richard Heald, Oliver
Boswell, Tim Heathcoat-Amory, Rt Hon David
Bottomley, Peter (Worthing W) Hoey, Kate
Bottomley, Rt Hon Mrs Virginia Hogg, Rt Hon Douglas
Brand, Dr Peter Horam, John
Brazier, Julian Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Breed, Colin Hunter, Andrew
Brooke, Rt Hon Peter Johnson Smith, Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey
Browning, Mrs Angela
Bruce, Ian (S Dorset) Kin g, Rt Hon Tom (Bridgwater)
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon) Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Burnett, John Laing, Mrs Eleanor
Cash, William Leigh, Edward
Chapman, Sir Sydney (Chipping Barnet) Letwin, Oliver
Lewis, Dr Julian (New Forest E)
Chope, Christopher Lidington, David
Clarke, Rt Hon Kenneth (Rushcliffe) Lilley, Rt Hon Peter
Livsey, Richard
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey Lloyd, Rt Hon Sir Peter (Fareham)
Collins, Tim LIwyd, Elfyn
Cormack, Sir Patrick Loughton, Tim
Cotter, Brian Luff, Peter
Davis, Rt Hon David (Haltemprice) Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
Dorrell, Rt Hon Stephen McCrea, Dr William
Duncan, Alan MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Evans, Nigel Mclntosh, Miss Anne
Fabricant, Michael MacKay, Rt Hon Andrew
Fallon, Michael McLoughlin, Patrick
Forth, Rt Hon Eric Madel, Sir David
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman Major, Rt Hon John
Fox, Dr Liam Maples, John
Fraser, Christopher Mates, Michael
Garnier, Edward Maude, Rt Hon Francis
Gill, Christopher Mawhinney, Rt Hon Sir Brian
Golding, Mrs Llin May, Mrs Theresa
Gorman, Mrs Teresa Moore, Michael
Gray, James Moss, Malcolm
Green, Damian Nicholls, Patrick
Greenway, John Oaten, Mark
Öpik, Lembit Steen, Anthony
Ottaway, Richard Streeter, Gary
Paice, James Swayne, Desmond
Paisley, Rev Ian Tapsell, Sir Peter
Paterson, Owen Taylor, Ian (Esher & Walton)
Pickles, Eric Taylor, Rt Hon John D (Strangford)
Prior, David Thomas, Simon (Ceredigion)
Redwood, Rt Hon John Townend, John
Robathan, Andrew Tredinnick, David
Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry) Tyrie, Andrew
Robinson, Peter (Belfast E) Viggers, Peter
Ross, William (E Lond'y) Waterson, Nigel
Rowe, Andrew (Faversham) Wells, Bowen
Ruffley, David Whitney, Sir Raymond
St Aubyn, Nick Whrttingdale, John
Sayeed, Jonathan Wigley, Rt Hon Dafydd
Shephard, Rt Hon Mrs Gillian Wilkinson, John
Shepherd, Richard Willis, Phil
Simpson, Keith (Mid-Norfolk) Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns) Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S) Young, Rt Hon Sir George
Soames, Nicholas
Spicer, Sir Michael Tellers for the Ayes:
Spring, Richard Mr. Dominic Grieve and
Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John Mr. Gerald Howarth.
Abbott, Ms Diane Caton, Martin
Adams, Mrs Irene (Paisley N) Cawsey, Ian
Ainger, Nick Chapman, Ben (Wirral S)
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE) Chaytor, David
Allan, Richard Chidgey, David
Allen, Graham Clapham, Michael
Anderson, Rt Hon Donald (Swansea E) Clark, Rt Hon Dr David (S Shields)
Clark, Dr Lynda (Edinburgh Pentlands)
Anderson, Janet (Rossendale)
Ashton, Joe Clark, Paul (Gillingham)
Atherton, Ms Candy Clarke, Charles (Norwich S)
Austin, John Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)
Bailey, Adrian Clarke, Rt Hon Tom (Coatbridge)
Baker, Norman Clarke, Tony (Northampton S)
Ballard, Jackie Clelland, David
Banks, Tony Clwyd, Ann
Barnes, Harry Coaker, Vernon
Barren, Kevin Coffey, Ms Ann
Bayley, Hugh Cohen, Harry
Beckett, Rt Hon Mrs Margaret Colman, Tony
Begg, Miss Anne Connarty, Michael
Benn, Hilary (Leeds C) Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Benn, Rt Hon Tony (Chesterfield) Cooper, Yvette
Benton, Joe Corbett, Fobin
Berry, Roger Corston, Jean
Best, Harold Cousins, Jim
Betts, Clive Cox, Tom
Blackman, Liz Cranston, Ross
Blears, Ms Hazel Cryer, Mrs Ann (Keighley)
Blizzard, Bob Cryer, John (Hornchurch)
Borrow, David Cummings, John
Bradley, Keith (Withington) Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin) Davey, Edward (Kingston)
Brake, Tom Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
Brinton, Mrs Helen Davidson Ian
Brown, Russell (Dumfries) Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)
Browne, Desmond Davis, Rt Hon Terry (B'ham Hodge H)
Buck, Ms Karen
Burden. Richard Dean, Mrs. Janet
Burgon, Colin Denham, Rt Hon John
Burstow, Paul Dismore, Andrew
Butler, Mrs Christine Dobbin, Jim
Caborn, Rt Hon Richard Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth) Doran, Frank
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge) Dowd, Jim
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V) Drew, David
Campbell-Savours, Dale Drown, Ms Julia
Caplin, Ivor Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Casale, Roger Eagle, Maria (L'pool Garston)
Edwards, Huw Kilfoyle, Peter
Efford, Clive King, Andy (Rugby & Kenilworth)
Etherington, Bill King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green)
Feam, Ronnie Kingham, Ms Tess
Fitzpatrick, Jim Ladyman, Dr Stephen
Fitzsimons, Mrs Loma Lammy, David
Flint, Caroline Lawrence, Mrs Jackie
Flynn, Paul Lepper, David
Follett, Barbara Leslie, Christopher
Foster, Rt Hon Derek Levitt, Tom
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings) Lewis, Ivan (Bury S)
Foster, Michael J (Worcester) Lewis, Terry (Worsley)
Gapes, Mike Lloyd, Tony (Manchester C)
George, Andrew (St Ives) Lock, David
Gerrard, Neil Love, Andrew
Gidley, Sandra McCabe, Steve
Gilroy, Mrs Linda McCafferty, Ms Chris
Godsiff, Roger McCartney, Rt Hon Ian (Makerfield)
Goggins, Paul
Gordon, Mrs Eileen McDonagh, Siobhain
Griffiths, Jane (Reading E) Macdonald, Calum
Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S) McDonnell, John
Griffiths, Win (Bridgend) McIsaac, Shona
Grocott, Bruce McKenna, Mrs Rosemary
Grogan, John Mackinlay, Andrew
Gunnell, John McNamara, Kevin
Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale) McNulty, Tony
Hall, Patrick (Bedford) MacShane, Denis
Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE) Mactaggart, Fiona
Hancock, Mike McWalter, Tony
Hanson, David McWilliam, John
Harman, Rt Hon Ms Harriet Mahon, Mrs Alice
Healey, John Mallaber, Judy
Heath, David (Somerton & Frome) Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S)
Henderson, Ivan (Harwich) Marsden, Paul (Shrewsbury)
Hendrick, Mark Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Hepburn, Stephen Marshall-Andrews, Robert
Heppell, John Martlew, Eric
Hesford, Stephen Meacher, Rt Hon Michael
Hill, Keith Meale, Alan
Hinchliffe, David Merron, Gillian
Hood, Jimmy Michael, Rt Hon Alun
Hope, Phil Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)
Hopkins, Kelvin Milburn, Rt Hon Alan
Howarth, Rt Hon Alan (Newport E) Miller, Andrew
Howarth, George (Knowsley N) Mitchell, Austin
Hughes, Ms Beverley (Stretford) Moffatt, Laura
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N) Moran, Ms Margaret
Humble, Mrs Joan Morgan, Alasdair (Galloway)
Hurst, Alan Morley, Elliot
Hutton, John Morris, Rt Hon Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)
Iddon, Dr Brian
Illsley, Eric Mountford, Kali
Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampstead) Murphy, Denis (Wansbeck)
Jackson, Helen (Hillsborough) Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Jamieson, David Naysmith, Dr Doug
Jenkins, Brian O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
Johnson, Miss Melanie (Welwyn Hatfield) Osborne, Ms Sandra
Pearson, Ian
Jones, Rt Hon Barry (Alyn) Perham, Ms Linda
Jones, Helen (Warrington N) Pickthall, Colin
Jones, Ms Jenny (Wolverh'ton SW) Plaskitt, James
Pollard, Kerry
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C) Pond, Chris
Jones, Dr Lynne (Selly Oak) Pope, Greg
Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S) Pound, Stephen
Joyce, Eric Powell, Sir Raymond
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Keeble, Ms Sally Prescott, Rt Hon John
Keen, Alan (Feltham & Heston) Primarolo, Dawn
Keen, Ann (Brentford & Isleworth) Prosser, Gwyn
Kelly, Ms Ruth Purchase, Ken
Kemp, Fraser Quin, Rt Hon Ms Joyce
Kennedy, Jane (Wavertree) Quinn, Lawrie
Khabra, Piara S Rapson, Syd
Kidney, David Raynsford, Nick
Reed, Andrew (Loughborough) Taylor, David (NW Leics)
Rendel, David Timms, Stephen
Roche, Mrs Barbara Tipping, Paddy
Rogers, Allan Todd, Mark
Rooker, Rt Hon Jeff Tonge, Dr Jenny
Rooney, Terry Trickett, Jon
Ross, Ernie (Dundee W) Truswell, Paul
Rowlands, Ted Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Roy, Frank Turner, Dr Desmond (Kemptown)
Ruane, Chris Turner, Dr George (NW Norfolk)
Ruddock, Joan Turner, Neil (Wigan)
Russell, Bob (Colchester) Twigg, Derek (Halton)
Ryan, Ms Joan Twigg, Stephen (Enfield)
Sanders, Adrian Tynan, Bill
Sarwar, Mohammad Vaz, Keith
Savidge, Malcolm Vis, Dr Rudi
Sedgemore, Brian Walley, Ms Joan
Shaw, Jonathan Ward, Ms Claire
Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert Wareing, Robert N
Short, Rt Hon Clare Webb, Steve
Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S) Wicks, Malcolm
Skinner, Dennis Williams, Rt Hon Alan (Swansea W)
Smith, Angela (Basildon) Williams, Alan W (E Carmarthen)
Smith, Jacqui (Redditch) Williams, Mrs Betty (Conwy)
Smith, John (Glamorgan) Wills, Michael
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent) Wilson, Brian
Spellar, John Winnick, David
Starkey, Dr Phyllis Winterton, Ms Rosie (Doncaster C)
Steinberg, Gerry Wood, Mike
Stewart, Ian (Eccles) Woolas, Phil
Stinchcombe, Paul Worthington, Tony
Stoate, Dr Howard Wright, Anthony D (Gt Yarmouth)
Stringer, Graham Wyatt, Derek
Stunell, Andrew
Sutcliffe, Gerry Tellers for the Noes:
Taylor, Rt Hon Mrs Ann (Dewsbury) Ms Bridget Prentice and
Dr. Nick Palmer.

Question accordingly negatived.

Mr. Hogg

I beg to move amendment No. 62, in page 3, line 6, after "a" insert "deer, boar, mountjack,".

Mr. Speaker

With this it will be convenient to take the following: Amendment No. 63, in page 3, line 6, leave out "fox, hare or rabbit" and insert "wild mammal".

Amendment No. 64, in page 3, line 11, after "a" insert "deer, boar, mountjack,".

Amendment No. 65, in page 3, line 11, leave out "fox, hare or rabbit" and insert "wild mammal".

Amendment No. 66, in page 3, line 20, at end insert— ', or (d) for the purpose of shooting dead the mammal after it was found or flushed out.'. Amendment No. 67, in page 3, line 25, after "the" insert "deer, boar, mountjack,".

Amendment No. 68, in page 3, line 25, leave out "fox, hare or rabbit" and insert "wild mammal".

Amendment No. 69, in page 3, line 31, after "(3)(c)" insert "or (d)".

Government amendments Nos. 46 and 47.

Mr. Hogg

Amendments Nos. 62 to 69 are my amendments, and amendment No. 66 is perhaps the most important of them. It is my intention to sit down before 10 o'clock, because I am anxious that we should have a Division on the amendment.

The amendments are designed to ensure that the use of dogs for the purposes of shooting remains lawful. I am sure that the House does not appreciate that, by introducing the Bill, the Government are striking a blow against shooting. Under clause 1, it is an offence for a person to hunt a wild mammal with a dog. The defences are set out in clause 7. Under that clause, the defence operates only if the first condition in clause 7(3) is satisfied.

In the context of hare shooting and/or rabbiting, the first condition may not be satisfied. Under the first condition, in order to use dogs to flush out rabbits or hares the purpose must be to protect crops, for example. Those who go rabbiting or hare shooting may do so simply for the sport of it, which is different from protecting crops. The first condition is satisfied if it is for the purpose of obtaining meat to be used for human or animal consumption. That may not be the purpose of the person who goes rabbiting or hare shooting for sport. On page 100 of his report, Lord Burns fully recognised that people go hare shooting for sport, and not for the purposes set out in clause 7(3).

The Government have frequently and loudly said that they have no intention of outlawing shooting. The Bill as originally drafted had that effect in respect of rabbiting. It is true that the Government have tabled amendment No. 49, which does not appear in this group but is in the next group, so the position of rabbiters is safeguarded. They would also be safeguarded by my amendment No. 66.

However, the position of those who want to use dogs for the purpose of shooting hares for sport is left open. They cannot lawfully use dogs to flush out hares if their purpose is to shoot them for sport, because that does not satisfy the narrow first condition in clause 7(3). The House—and, more particularly, the shooting fraternity—needs to know that the Bill as originally and as presently drafted is a direct blow against shooters. That is the significance of my amendments.

The Government are by stealth—like they do so much else—diminishing the right of people to go shooting, which is a lawful sport. It is just possible that the Government have made that error by inadvertence, but I have no reason to be charitable to them. I believe that, on the whole, they do things deliberately, and this is part and parcel of an overall policy of taking away rights by stealth.

It is extremely important that the House asserts the rights of shooters The best way of asserting and defending the rights of shooters is by pressing the amendment to a Division and voting on it. By that means, shooters will know that the Conservative party stands by their rights. That is what I hope my right hon. and hon. Friends will do.

Mr. Banks


Mr. Speaker

Order. Has the right hon. and learned Gentleman finished?

Mr. Hogg

I have.

Mr. Banks

I know that there is only a minute to go, but one can say an awful lot in a minute.

I tell the right hon. and learned Member for Sleaford and North Hykeham (Mr. Hogg) that, yet again, he has repeated the slur, which those on his side have used consistently, that the Bill is the thin and of the wedge and that in the end it will lead to a ban on shooting and fishing. That has never been our intention or that of those in the campaign. Yet again, he has tried to confuse the House, but we are not confused.

It being Ten o'clock, MR. SPENKER, pursuant to Orders [7 November and this day], put forthwith the Question already proposed from the Chair.

Question put, That the amendment be made:—

The House divided: Ayes 134, Noes 324.

Division No. 133] [10 pm
Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey) Heathcoat-Amory, Rt Hon David
Arbuthnot, Rt Hon James Heseltine, Rt Hon Michael
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham) Hoey, Kate
Beith, Rt Hon A J Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Bell, Martin (Tatton) Hunter, Andrew
Bercow, John Johnson Smith, Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey
Beresford, Sir Paul
Blunt, Crispin King, Rt Hon Tom (Bridgwater)
Body, Sir Richard Lansley, Andrew
Boswell, Tim Leigh, Edward
Bottomley, Peter (Worthing W) Letwin, Oliver
Bottomley, Rt Hon Mrs Virginia Lewis, Dr Julian (New Forest E)
Brand, Dr Peter Lidington, David
Brazier, Julian LJIley, Rt Hon Peter
Brooke, Rt Hon Peter Livsey, Richard
Browning, Mrs Angela Lloyd, Rt Hon Sir Peter (Fareham)
Bruce, Ian (S Dorset) Llwyd, Efyn
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon) Loughton, Tim
Burnett, John Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
Cash, William McCrea, Dr William
Chapman, Sir Sydney (Chipping Barnet) MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Mclntosr, Miss Anne
Chope, Christopher Maclean Rt Hon David
Clarke, Rt Hon Kenneth (Rushcliffe) McLoughlin, Patrick
Madel, Sir David
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey Major, Rt Hon John
Collins, Tim Maples, John
Cormack, Sir Patrick Mates, Michael
Cran, James Mawhinney, Rt Hon Sir Brian
Davis, Rt Hon David (Haltemprice) May, Mrs Theresa
Duncan, Alan Moore, Michael
Duncan Smith, Iain Moss, Malcolm
Emery, Rt Hon Sir Peter Nicholls, Patrick
Evans, Nigel Norman, Archie
Fabricant, Michael Oaten, Mark
Fallon, Michael Ouml;pik, Lembit
Forth, Rt Hon Eric Paisley, Rev Ian
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman Paterson, Owen
Fox, Dr Liam Pickles, Eric
Garnier, Edward Prior, David
Gill, Christopher Redwood, Rt Hon John
Gillan, Mrs Cheryl Robathan, Andrew
Golding, Mrs Llin Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry)
Gorman, Mrs Teresa Robinson, Peter (Belfast E)
Gray, James Ross, William (E Lond'y)
Green, Damian Rowe, Andrew (Faversham)
Greenway, John Ruffley, David
Grieve, Dominic St Aubyn, Nick
Gummer, Rt Hon John Sayeed, Jonathan
Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archie Shephard, Rt Hon Mrs Gillian
Hammond, Philip Shepherd, Richard
Harvey, Nick Smith, Sir Robert (WAb'd'ns)
Hawkins, Nick Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S)
Hayes, John Soames, Nicholas
Heald, Oliver Spicer, Sir Michael
Heath, David (Somerton & Frome) Spring, Richard
Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John Waterson, Nigel
Steen, Anthony Webb, Steve
Streeter, Gary Wells, Bowen
Swayne, Desmond Whitney, Sir Raymond
Syms, Robert Whittingdale, John
Tapsell Sir Peter Wigley, Rt Hon Dafydd
Taylor, Ian (Esher & Walton) Wilkinson, John
Wilshire, David
Taylor, Rt Hon John D (Strangford) Winterton Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Taylor, Matthew (Truro) Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Thomas, Simon (Ceredigion) Young, Rt Hon Sir George
Townend, John
Tredinnick, David Tellers for the Ayes:
Tyrie, Andrew Mr. Douglas Hogg and
Viggers, Peter Mr. Gerald Howarth.
Abbott, Ms Diane Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)
Adams, Mrs Irene (Paisley N) Clarke, Rt Hon Tom (Coatbridge)
Ainger, Nick Clarke, Tony (Northampton S)
Ainsworth, Robert (Conrtry NE) Clelland, David
Allan, Richard Clwyd, Ann
Allen, Graham Coaker, Vernon
Anderson, Rt Hon Donald (Swansea E) Coffey, Ms Ann
Cohen, Harry
Anderson, Janet (Rossendale) Colman, Tony
Ashton, Joe Connarty, Michael
Atherton, Ms Candy Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Austin, John Cooper, Yvette
Bailey, Adrian Corbett, Robin
Baker, Norman Corbyn, Jeremy
Ballard, Jackie Corston, Jean
Banks, Tony Cotter, Brian
Barnes, Harry Cousins, Jim
Barron, Kevin Cox, Tom
Bayley, Hugh Cranston, Ross
Beckett, Rt Hon Mrs Margaret Cryer, Mrs Ann (Keighley)
Begg, Miss Anne Cryer, John (Hornchurch)
Benn, Hilary (Leeds C) Cummings, John
Benn, Rt Hon Tony (Chesterfield) Cunningham, Rt Hon Dr Jack (Copeland)
Benton, Joe
Berry, Roger Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Best, Harold Davey, Edward (Kingston)
Betts, Clive Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
Blackman, Liz Davidson, Ian
Blizzard, Bob Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)
Borrow, David Davis, Rt Hon Terry (B'ham Hodge H)
Bradley, Keith (Withington)
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin) Dean, Mrs Janet
Brake, Tom Denham, Rt Hon John
Brinton, Mrs Helen Dismore, Andrew
Brown, Russell (Dumfries) Dobbin, Jim
Browne, Desmond Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Buck, Ms Karen Doran, Frank
Burden, Richard Dowd, Jim
Burgon, Colin Drew, David
Burstow, Paul Drown, Ms Julia
Butler, Mrs Christine Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Caborn, Rt Hon Richard Eagle, Maria (L 'pool Garston)
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth) Edwards, Huw
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge) Efford, Clive
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V) Etherington, Bill
Campbell-Savours, Dale Feam, Ronnie
Caplin, Ivor Fitzpatrick, Jim
Casale, Roger Fitzsimons, Mrs Loma
Caton, Martin Flint, Caroline
Cawsey, Ian Rynn, Paul
Chapman, Ben (Wirral S) Follett, Barbara
Chayfor, David Foster, Rt Hon Derek
Chidgey, David Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
Clapham, Michael Foster, Michael J (Worcester)
Clark, Rt Hon Dr David (S Shields) Gapes, Mike
Clark, Dr Lynda (Edinburgh Pentlands) George, Andrew (St Ives)
Gerrard, Neil
Clark, Paul (Gillingham) Gibson, Dr Ian
Clarke, Charles (Norwich S) Gidley, Sandra
Gilroy, Mrs Linda McAvoy, Thomas
Godsiff, Roger McCabe, Steve
Goggins, Paul McCafferty, Ms Chris
Gordon, Mrs Eileen McCartney, Rt Hon Ian (Makerfield)
Griffiths, Jane (Reading E)
Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S) McDonagh, Siobhain
Griffiths, Win (Bridgend) Macdonald, Calum
Grocott, Bruce McDonnell, John
Grogan, John McFall, John
Gunnell, John McGuire, Mrs Anne
Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale) McIsaac, Shona
Hall, Patrick (Bedford) McKenna, Mrs Rosemary
Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE) Mackinlay, Andrew
Hancock, Mike McNamara, Kevin
Hanson, David McNulty, Tony
Harman, Rt Hon Ms Harriet MacShane, Denis
Harris, Dr Evan Mactaggart, Fiona
Healey, John McWalter, Tony
Henderson, Doug (Newcastle N) McWilliam, John
Henderson, Ivan (Harwich) Mahon, Mrs Alice
Hendrick, Mark Mallaber, Judy
Hepburn, Stephen Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S)
Heppell, John Marsden, Paul (Shrewsbury)
Hesford, Stephen Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Hill, Keith Marshall-Andrews, Robert
Hinchliffe, David Martlew, Eric
Hood, Jimmy Meacher, Rt Hon Michael
Hope, Phil Meale, Alan
Hopkins, Kelvin Merron, Gillian
Howarth, Rt Hon Alan (Newport E) Michael, Rt Hon Alun
Howarth, George (Knowsley N) Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)
Hughes, Ms Beverley (Stretford) Milburn, Rt Hon Alan
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N) Miller, Andrew
Humble, Mrs Joan Mitchell, Austin
Hurst, Alan Moffatt, Laura
Hutton, John Moonie, Dr Lewis
Iddon, Dr Brian Moran, Ms Margaret
Illsley, Eric Morley, Elliot
Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampstead) Morris, Rt Hon Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)
Jackson, Helen (Hillsborough)
Jamieson, David Mountford, Kali
Jenkins, Brian Mudie, George
Johnson, Miss Melanie (Welwyn Hatfield) Murphy, Denis (Wansbeck)
Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Jones, Rt Hon Barry (Alyn) Naysmith, Dr Doug
Jones, Helen (Warrington N) O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
Jones, Ms Jenny (Wolverh'ton SW) Osborne, Ms Sandra
Pearson, Ian
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C) Perham, Ms Linda
Jones, Dr Lynne (Selly Oak) Pickthall, Colin
Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S) Plaskitt, James
Joyce, Eric Pollard, Kerry
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald Pond, Chris
Keeble, Ms Sally Pope, Greg
Keen, Alan (Feltham & Heston) Pound, Stephen
Keen, Ann (Brentford & Isleworth) Powell, Sir Raymond
Kelly, Ms Ruth Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Kemp, Fraser Prescott, Rt Hon John
Kennedy, Jane (Wavertree) Primarolo, Dawn
Khabra, Piara S Prosser, Gwyn
Kidney, David Purchase, Ken
Kilfoyle, Peter Quin, Rt Hon Ms Joyce
King, Andy (Rugby & Kenilworth) Quinn, Lawrie
King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green) Rapson, Syd
Kingham, Ms Tess Raynsford, Nick
Ladyman, Dr Stephen Reed, Andrew (Loughborough)
Lammy, David Rendel, David
Lawrence, Mrs Jackie Robinson, Geoffrey (Cov'try NW)
Lepper, David Roche, Mrs Barbara
Leslie, Christopher Rogers, Allan
Levitt, Tom Rooker, Rt Hon Jeff
Lewis, Ivan (Bury S) Rooney, Terry
Lewis, Terry (Worsley) Rowlands, Ted
Lloyd, Tony (Manchester C) Roy, Frank
Lock, David Ruane, Chris
Love, Andrew Ruddock, Joan
Russell, Bob (Colchester) Touhig, Don
Ryan, Ms Joan Trickett, Jon
Sanders, Adrian Truswell, Paul
Sarwar, Mohammad Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Savidge, Malcolm Turner, Dr Desmond (Kemptown)
Sawford, Phil Turner, Dr George (NW Norfolk)
Sedgemore, Brian Turner, Neil (Wigan)
Shaw, Jonathan Twigg, Derek (Halton)
Sheerman, Barry Twigg, Stephen (Enfield)
Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert Tynan, Bill
Short, Rt Hon Clare Vaz, Keith
Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S) Vis, Dr Rudi
Skinner, Dennis Walley, Ms Joan
Smith, Rt Hon Andrew (Oxford E) Ward, Ms Claire
Smith, Angela (Basildon) Wareing, Robert N
Smith, Jacqui (Redditch) Whitehead, Dr Alan
Smith, John (Glamorgan) Williams, Rt Hon Alan (Swansea W)
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
Spellar, John Williams, Alan W (E Carmarthen)
Starkey, Dr Phyllis Williams, Mrs Betty (Conwy)
Steinberg, Gerry Willis, Phil
Stewart, Ian (Eccles) Wills, Michael
Stinchcombe, Paul Wilson, Brian
Stoate, Dr Howard Winnick, David
Stringer, Graham Winterton, Ms Rosie (Doncaster C)
Stunell, Andrew Wood, Mike
Sutcliffe, Gerry Woolas, Phil
Taylor, Rt Hon Mrs Ann (Dewsbury) Worthington, Tony
Wright, Anthony D (Gt Yarmouth)
Taylor, David (NW Leics) Wyatt, Derek
Taylor, Sir Teddy
Timms, Stephen Tellers for the Noes:
Tipping, Paddy Ms Bridget Prentice and
Tonge, Dr Jenny Dr. Nick Palmer.

Question accordingly negatived.

Amendment proposed: No. 36, in page 6, line 37, at end insert—

—(1) The Secretary of State shall by order make a scheme for the making of payments to persons in respect of losses incurred by them as a result of—

  1. (a) ceasing, by reason of the enactment or coming into force of this Act—
    1. (i) to carry on their businesses so far as they consist of activities prohibited by this Act, or
    2. (ii) to continue in paid employment so far as that employment was dependent on activities prohibited by this Act;
  2. (b) damage by wild mammals which were previously controlled by activities prohibited by this Act.

(2) A scheme may, in particular—

  1. (a) specify the descriptions of losses and businesses in respect of which payments are, or are not, to be made and the basis of valuation for determining losses,
  2. (b) specify the amounts of the payments to be made or the basis on whit h such amounts are to be calculated,
  3. (c) provide for the procedure to be followed (including any time within which claims must be made and the provision of information) in respect of claims under the scheme and for the determination of such claims,
  4. (d) include provision for arbitration of any dispute as to a person's entitlement to payments under the scheme or the amounts of any such payments.

(3) Before making a scheme under this paragraph, the Secretary of State shall consult such organisations as appear to him to represent persons likely to be entitled to payments under such a scheme.

(4) An order under this paragraph shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in, pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.'.—[Mr. Öpik.]

Question put, That the amendment be made:made:—

The House divided: Ayes 156,Noes 281;

Division No.134] [10:14pm
Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey) Heathcoat-Amory, Rt Hon David
Allan, Richard Heseltine, Rt Hon Michael
Arbuthnot, Rt Hon James Hoey, Kate
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham) Hogg, Rt Hon Douglas
Baker, Norman Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Beggs, Roy Hughes, Simon (Southwark N)
Beith, Rt Hon A J Hunter, Andrew
Bell, Martin (Tatton) Hurst, Alan
Bercow, John Johnson Smith,
Beresford, Sir Paul Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey
Blunt, Crispin King, Rt Hon Tom (Bridgwater)
Body, Sir Richard Lansley, Andrew
Boswell, Tim Leigh, Edward
Bottomley, Peter (Worthing W) Letwin, Oliver
Bottomley, Rt Hon Mrs Virginia Lewis, Dr. Julian (New Forest E)
Brake, Tom Lidington, David
Brand, Dr Peter Lilley, Rt Hon Peter
Brazier, Julian Livsey, Richard
Brooke, Rt Hon Peter Lloyd, Rt Hon Sir Peter (Fareham)
Browning, Mrs Angela Llwyd, Elfyn
Bruce, Ian (S Dorset) Loughton, Tim
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon) Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
Burnett, John McCrea, Dr William
Cash, William MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Chapman, Sir Sydney Mclntosh, Miss Anne
(Chipping Barnet) Maclean, Rt Hon David
Chope, Christopher McLoughin, Patrick
Clarke, Rt Hon Kenneth Madel, Sir David
(Rushcliffe) Major, Rt Hon John
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey Maples, John
Collins, Tim Mates, Michael
Cormack, Sir Patrick Mawhinney, Rt Hon Sir Brian
Cotter, Brian May, Mrs Theresa
Cran, James Mitchell, Austin
Davey, Edward (Kingston) Moore, Michael
Davis, Rt Hon David (Haltemprice) Moss, Malcolm
Dorrell, Rt Hon Stephen Nicholls, Patrick
Duncan, Alan Oaten, Mark
Duncan Smith, Iain Paice, James
Emery, Rt Hon Sir Peter Paisley, Rev Ian
Evans, Nigel Paterson, Owen
Fabricant, Michael Pickles, Eric
Fallen, Michael Prior, David
Feam, Ronnie Redwood, Rt Hon John
Field, Rt Hon Frank Robathan Andrew
Forth, Rt Hon Eric Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry)
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman Robinson, Peter (Belfast E)
Fox, Dr Liam Rooker, Rt Hon Jeff
Fraser, Christopher Ross, William (E Lond'y)
Garnier, Edward Ruffley, David
George, Andrew (St Ives) Russell, Bob (Colchester)
Gidley, Sandra St Aubyn, Nick
Gill, Christopher Sanders, Adrian
Gillan, Mrs Cheryl Sayeed, Jonathan
Golding, Mrs Llin Shephard, Rt Hon Mrs Gillian
Gorman, Mrs Teresa Shepherd, Richard
Gray, James Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns)
Green, Damian Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S)
Greenway, John Soames, Nicholas
Grieve, Dominic Spicer, Sir Michael
Gummer, Rt Hon John Spring, Richard
Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archie Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John
Hammond, Philip Steen, Anthony
Hancock, Mike Stinchcombe, Paul
Harvey, Nick Streeter, Gary
Hawkins, Nick Stunell, Andrew
Hayes, John Swayne, Desmond
Heald, Oliver Syms, Robert
Heath, David (Somerton & Frome) Tapsell, Sir Peter
Taylor, Ian (Esher & Walton) Whitney, Sir Raymond
Taylor, Rt Hon John D (Strangford) Whittingdale, John
Taylor, Matthew (Truro) Wigley, Rt Hon Dafydd
Taylor, Sir Teddy Wilkinson, John
Thomas, Simon (Ceredigion) Willis, Phil
Tonge, Dr Jenny Wilshire, David
Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Townend, John Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Tredinnick, David young, Rt Hon Sir George
Tyrie, Andrew
Viggers, Peter Tellers for the Ayes:
Webb, Steve Mr. Lembit Öpik and
Wells, Bowen Mr. Gerald Howarth.
Abbott, Ms Diane Coaker, Vernon
Adams, Mrs Irene (Paisley N) Coffey, Ms Ann
Ainger, Nick Cohen, Harry
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE) Colman, Tony
Allen, Graham Connarty, Michael
Anderson, Rt Hon Donald Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
(Swansea E) Cooper, Yvette
Anderson, Janet (Rossendale) Corbett, Robin
Ashton, Joe Corbyn, Jeremy
Atherton, Ms Candy Corston, Jean
Austin, John Cousins, Jim
Bailey, Adrian Cox, Tom
Ballard, Jackie Cranston, Ross
Banks, Tony Cryer, Mrs Ann (Keighley)
Barnes, Harry Cryer, John (Hornchurch)
Barron, Kevin Cunningham, Rt Hon Dr Jack
Bayley, Hugh (Copeland)
Beckett, Rt Hon Mrs Margaret Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Begg, Miss Anne Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
Benn, Hilary (Leeds C) Davidson, Ian
Benn, Rt Hon Tony (Chesterfield) Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)
Benton, Joe Davis, Rt Hon Terry
Berry, Roger (B'ham Hodge H)
Best, Harold Dean, Mrs Janet
Betts, Clive Denham, Rt Hon John
Blackman, Liz Dismore, Andrew
Blears, Ms Hazel Dobbin, Jim
Blizzard, Bob Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Borrow, David Doran, Frank
Bradley, Keith (Withington) Dowd, Jim
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin) Drew, David
Brinton, Mrs Helen Drown, Ms Julia
Brown, Russell (Dumfries) Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Browne, Desmond Eagle, Maria (L'pool Garston)
Buck, Ms Karen Edwards, Huw
Burden, Richard Efford, Clive
Burgon, Colin Etherington, Bill
Burstow, Paul Fitzpatrick, Jim
Butler, Mrs Christine Fitzsimons, Mrs Loma
Caborn, Rt Hon Richard Flint, Caroline
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth) Flynn, Paul
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge) Follett, Barbara
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V) Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
Campbell-Savours, Dale Foster, Michael J (Worcester)
Caplin, Ivor Galloway, George
Casale, Roger Gapes, Mike
Caton, Martin Gerrard, Neil
Cawsey, Ian Gibson, Dr Ian
Chapman, Ben (Wirral S) Gilroy, Mrs Linda
Chaytor, David Godsiff, Roger
Chidgey, David Goggins, Paul
Clapham, Michael Gordon, Mrs Eileen
Clark, Rt Hon Dr David (S Shields) Griffiths, Jane (Reading E)
Clark, Dr Lynda Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)
(Edinburgh Pentlands) Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Clark, Paul (Gillingham) Grocott, Bruce
Clarke, Charles (Norwich S) Gunnell, John
Clarke, Eric (Midlothian) Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale)
Clarke, Rt Hon Tom (Coatbridge) Hall, Patrick (Bedford)
Clarke, Tony (Northampton S) Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE)
Clwyd, Ann Hanson, David
Harman, Rt Hon Ms Harriet Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Harris, Dr Evan Martlew, Eric
Healey, John Meale, Alan
Henderson, Ivan (Harwich) Merron, Gillian
Hendrick, Mark Michael, Rt Hon Alun
Hepburn, Stephen Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)
Heppell, John Milburn, Rt Hon Alan
Hesford, Stephen Miller, Andrew
Hill, Keith Moffatt, Laura
Hinchliffe, David Moran, Ms Margaret
Hood, Jimmy Moriey, Elliot
Hope, Phil Morris, Rt Hon Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)
Hopkins, Kelvin
Howarth, Rt Hon Alan (Newport E) Mountford, Kali
Howarth, George (Knowsley N) Mudie, George
Hughes, Ms Beverley (Stretford) Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N) Naysmith, Dr Doug
Humble, Mrs Joan O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
Hutton, John Osborne, Ms Sandra
Iddon, Dr Brian Pearson, Ian
Illsley, Eric Perham, Ms Linda
Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampstead) Pickthall, Colin
Jackson, Helen (Hillsborough) Plaskitt, James
Jamieson, David Pollard, Kerry
Jenkins, Brian Pond, Chris
Johnson, Miss Melanie (Welwyn Hatfield) Pope, Greg
Pound, Stephen
Jones, Rt Hon Barry (Alyn) Powell, Sir Raymond
Jones, Helen (Warrington N) Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Jones, Ms Jenny (Wolverh'ton SW) Primarolo, Dawn
Prosser, Gwyn
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C) Quin, Rt Hon Ms Joyce
Jones, Dr Lynne (Selly Oak) Quinn, Lawrie
Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S) Rapson, Syd
Joyce, Eric Reed, Andrew (Loughborough)
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald Rendel, David
Keeble, Ms Sally Robinson, Geoffrey (Cov'try NW)
Keen, Alan (Feltham & Heston) Roche, Mrs Barbara
Keen, Ann (Brentford & Isleworth) Rogers, Allan
Kelly, Ms Ruth Rooney, Terry
Kennedy, Jane (Wavertree) Ross, Emie (Dundee W)
Khabra, Piara S Rowlands, Ted
Kidney, David Roy, Frank
King, Andy (Rugby & Kenilworth) Ruane, Chris
King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green) Ruddock, Joan
Kingham, Ms Tess Ryan, Ms Joan
Ladyman, Dr Stephen Sarwar, Mohammad
Lammy, David Savidge, Malcolm
Lawrence, Mrs Jackie Sawford, Phil
Lepper, David Shaw, Jonathan
Leslie, Christopher Short, Rt Hon Clare
Levitt, Tom Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S)
Lewis, Ivan (Bury S) Skinner, Dennis
Lewis, Terry (Worsley) Smith, Rt Hon Andrew (Oxford E)
Linton, Martin Smith, Angela (Basildon)
Lloyd, Tony (Manchester C) Smith, Jacqui (Redditch)
Lock, David Smith, John (Glamorgan)
Love, Andrew Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
McAvoy, Thomas Spellar, John
McCabe, Steve Starkey, Dr Phyllis
McCafferty, Ms Chris Steinberg, Gerry
McCartney, Rt Hon Ian (Makerfield) Stewart, Ian (Eccles)
Stoate, Dr Howard
McDonagh, Siobhain Sutcliffe, Gerry
Macdonald, Calum Taylor, Rt Hon Mrs Ann (Dewsbury)
McDonnell, John
McFall, John Taylor, David (NW Letes)
McGuire, Mrs Anne Timms, Stephen
McIsaac, Shona Tipping, Paddy
Mackinlay, Andrew Touhig, Don
McNamara, Kevin Trickett, Jon
Mactaggart, Fiona Truswell, Paul
McWilliam, John Turner, Dr George (NW Norfolk)
Mahon, Mrs Alice Turner, Neil (Wigan)
Mallaber, Judy Twigg, Derek (Halton)
Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S) Twigg, Stephen (Enfield)
Tynan, Bill Wills, Michael
Vis, Dr Rudi Winnick, David
Walley, Ms Joan Winterton, Ms Rosie (Doncaster C)
Ward, Ms Claire Wood, Mike
Wareing, Robert N Worthington, Tony
Whitehead, Dr Alan Wright, Anthony D (Gt Yarmouth)
Wyatt, Derek
Williams, Rt Hon Alan (Swansea W)
Tellers for the Noes:
Williams, Alan W (E Carmarthen) Mr. Bridget Prentice and
Williams, Mrs Betty (Conwy) Dr. Nick Palmer.

Question accordingly negatived.

Amendments made: No. 43, in page 3, line 6, leave out ", hare or rabbit" and insert "or hare".

No. 44, in page 3, line 11, leave out ", hare or rabbit" and insert "or hare"

No. 45, in page 3, line 25, leave out ", hare or rabbit" and insert "or hare"

No. 49, in page 3, line 49, at end insert—

'Rabbits . It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under paragraph 1 to prove that the conduct to which the charge relates consisted of hunting a rabbit.'.

No. 51, in page 4, line 3, leave out "rabbit or".

No. 46, in page 3, line 37, at end insert—

'7A.—(1) It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under paragraph 1 to prove that—

  1. (a) the conduct to which the charge relates consisted of stalking a deer or flushing it out of cover, and
  2. (b) the conditions in this paragraph were met.

(2) The first condition is—

  1. (a) that reasonable steps were taken for the purpose of ensuring that as soon as possible after being found or flushed out the deer would be shot dead, and
  2. (b) in particular that any dog used in the stalking or flushing out was kept under sufficiently close control to ensure that it did not prevent or obstruct achievement of the objective mentioned in paragraph (a).

(3) The second condition is that the stalking or flushing out took place entirely on land—

  1. (a) which belonged (within the meaning of paragraph 22) to the person doing the stalking or flushing out, or
  2. (b) which he had been permitted to use for that purpose by someone to whom the land belonged (within the meaning of that paragraph).'.

No. 48, in page 3 leave out lines 39 to 49 and insert— '. It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under paragraph 1 to prove that the conduct to which the charge relates consisted of hunting a rodent.'.—[Mr. Dowd.]

Amendment proposed: No. 50, in page 3, line 49, at end insert—

'Mink . It is a defence for a person charged with an offence under paragraph 1 to prove that the conduct to which the charge relates consisted of hunting a mink.'.—[Mr. Dowd.]

Question put, That the amendment be made—

The House divided: Ayes 119, Noes 295

Division No. 135] [10.28 pm
Arbuthnot, Rt Hon James Llwyd, Efyn
Beggs, Roy Luff, Peter
Bell, Martin (Tatton) Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
Bercow, John McCrea, Dr William
Blunt, Crispin MacGregor, Rt Hon John
Boswell, Tim Mclntosh, Miss Anne
Brazier, Julian Maclean, Rt Hon David
Breed, Colin McLoughlin, Patrick
Brooke, Rt Hon Peter Madel, Sir David
Browning, Mrs Angela Major, Rt Hon John
Bruce, Ian (S Dorset) Malins, Humfrey
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon) Maples, John
Burnett, John Mates, Michael
Burstow, Paul Maude, Rt Hon Francis
Cash, William Mawhinney, Rt Hon Sir Brian
Chapman, Sir Sydney (Chipping Barnet) May, Mrs Theresa
Mitchell, Austin
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey Moonie, Dr Lewis
Collins, Tim Moore, Michael
Cormack, Sir Patrick Nicholls, Patrick
Cran, James Oaten, Mark
Davis, Rt Hon David (Haltemprice) Öpik, Lembit
Dorrell, Rt Hon Stephen Paice, James
Duncan, Alan Paisley, Rev Ian
Duncan Smith, Iain Paterson, Owen
Emery, Rt Hon Sir Peter Pickles, Eric
Evans, Nigel Prior, David
Fallon, Michael Redwood, Rt Hon John
Forth, Rt Hon Eric Robathan, Andrew
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry)
Garnier, Edward Robinson, Peter (Belfast E)
George, Andrew (St Ives) Rooker, Rt Hon Jeff
Gill, Christopher Ross, William (E Lond'y)
Gillan, Mrs Cheryl Ruffley, David
Golding, Mrs Llin St Aubyn, Nick
Shephard, Rt Hon Mrs Gillian
Gorman, Mrs Teresa Shepherd, Richard
Gray, James Simpson, Keith (Mid-Norfolk)
Green, Dominic Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns)
Greenway, John Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S)
Grieve, Dominic Soames, Nicholas
Gummer, Rt Hon John Spicer, Sir Michael
Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archie Spring, Richard
Harris, Dr Evan Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John
Harvey, Nick Steen, Anthony
Hayes, John Swayne, Desmond
Heald, Oliver Tapsell, Sir Peter
Heath, David (Somerton & Frome) Taylor, Ian (Esher & Walton)
Hoey, Kate Thomas, Simon (Ceredigion)
Howarth, Gerald (Aldershot) Tredinnick, David
Hunter, Andrew Tyrie, Andrew
Johnson Smith, Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey Webb, Steve
Wells, Bowen
King, Rt Hon Tom (Bridgwater) Whitney, Sir Raymond
Laing, Mrs Eleanor Whittingdale, John
Lansley, Andrew Wigley, Rt Hon Dafydd
Leigh, Edward Wilshire, David
Letwin, Oliver Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Lewis, Dr Julian (New Forest E) Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Lidington, David
Lilley, Rt Hon Peter Tellers for the Ayes:
Livsey, Richard Mr. A. J. Beith and
Lloyd, Rt Hon Sir Peter (Fareham) Mr. Douglas Hogg.
Abbott, Ms Diane Allen, Graham
Adams, Mrs Irene (Paisley N) Anderson, Rt Hon Donald (Swansea E)
Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE) Anderson, Janet (Rossendale)
Allan, Richard Ashton, Joe
Atherton, Ms Candy Dean, Mrs Janet
Austin, John Denham, Rt Hon John
Bailey, Adrian Dismore, Andrew
Baker, Norman Dobbin, Jim
Ballard, Jackie Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Banks, Tony Doran, Frank
Barnes, Harry Dowd, Jim
Barron, Kevin Drew, David
Bayley, Hugh Drown, Ms Julia
Begg, Miss Anne Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Benn, Hilary (Leeds C) Eagle, Maria (L'pool Garston)
Benn, Rt Hon Tony (Chesterfield) Edwards, Huw
Benton, Joe Efford, Clive
Berry, Roger Etherington, Bill
Best, Harold Feam, Ronnie
Betts, Clive Fitzpatrick, Jim
Blackman, Liz Fitzsimons, Mrs Loma
Blears, Ms Hazel Flint, Caroline
Blizzard, Bob Flynn, Paul
Borrow, David Follett, Barbara
Bradley, Keith (Withington) Foster, Rt Hon Derek
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin) Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
Brake, Tom Foster, Michael J (Worcester)
Brinton, Mrs Helen Galloway, George
Brown, Russell (Dumfries) Gapes, Mike
Browne, Desmond Gerrard, Neil
Buck, Ms Karen Gibson, Dr Ian
Burden, Richard Gilroy, Mrs Linda
Burgon, Colin Godsiff, Roger
Butler, Mrs Christine Goggins, Paul
Caborn, Rt Hon Richard Gordon, Mrs Eileen
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth) Griffiths, Jane (Reading E)
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge) Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V) Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Campbell-Savours, Dale Grocott, Bruce
Caplin, Ivor Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale)
Casale, Roger Hall, Patrick (Bedford)
Caton, Martin Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE)
Cawsey, Ian Hancock, Mike
Chapman, Ben (Wirral S) Hanson, David
Chaytor, David Harman, Rt Hon Ms Harriet
Chidgey, David Healey, John
Clapham, Michael Henderson, Ivan (Harwich)
Clark, Rt Hon Dr David (S Shields) Hendrick, Mark
Clark, Dr Lynda (Edinburgh Pentlands) Hepburn, Stephen
Heppell, John
Clark, Paul (Gillingham) Hesford, Stephen
Clarke, Charles (Norwich S) Hill, Keith
Clarke, Eric (Midlothian) Hinchliffe, David
Clarke, Rt Hon Tom (Coatbridge) Hood, Jimmy
Clarke, Tony (Northampton S) Hope, Phil
Clwyd, Ann Hopkins, Kelvin
Coaker, Vernon Howarth, Rt Hon Alan (Newport E)
Coffey, Ms Ann Howarth, George (Knowsley N)
Cohen, Harry Hughes, Ms Beverley (Stretford)
Colman, Tony Humble, Mrs Joan
Connarty, Michael Hurst, Alan
Cook, Frank (Stockton N) Hutton, John
Cooper, Yvette Iddon, Dr Brian
Corbett, Robin Illsley, Eric
Corbyn, Jeremy Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampstead)
Corston, Jean Jackson, Helen (Hillsborough)
Cousins, Jim Jamieson, David
Cox, Tom Jenkins, Brian
Cranston, Ross Johnson, Miss Melanie (Welwyn Hatfield)
Cryer, Mrs Ann (Keighley)
Cryer, John (Hornchurch) Jones, Rt Hon Barry (Alyn)
Cunningham, Rt Hon Dr Jack (Copeland) Jones, Helen (Warrington N)
Jones, Ms Jenny (Wolverh'ton SW)
Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Davey, Edward (Kingston) Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)
Davey, Valerie (Bristol W) Jones, Dr Lynne (Selly Oak)
Davidson, Ian Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S)
Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli) Joyce, Eric
Davis, Rt Hon Terry (B'ham Hodge H) Keeble, Ms Sally
Keen, Alan (Feltham & Heston)
Keen, Ann (Brentford & Isleworth) Miller, Andrew
Kelly, Ms Ruth Moffatt, Laura
Kennedy, Jane (Wavertree) Moran, Ms Margaret
Khabra, Piara S Morley, Elliot
Kidney, David Morris, Rt Hon Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)
Kilfoyle, Peter
King, Andy (Rugby & Kenilworth) Mountford, Kali
King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green) Mudie, George
Kingham, Ms Tess Murphy, Denis (Wansbeck)
Ladyman, Dr Stephen Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Lammy, David Naysmith, Dr Doug
Lawrence, Mrs Jackie O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
Lepper, David Osborne, Ms Sandra
Leslie, Christopher Pearson, Ian
Levitt, Tom Perham, Ms Linda
Lewis, Ivan (Bury S) Pickthall, Colin
Lewis, Terry (Worsley) Plaskitt, James
Linton, Martin Pollard, Kerry
Lloyd, Tony (Manchester C) Pond, Chris
Lock, David Pope, Greg
Love, Andrew Pound, Stephen
McAvoy, Thomas Powell, Sir Raymond
McCabe, Steve Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
McCafferty, Ms Chris Primarolo, Dawn
McCartney, Rt Hon Ian (Makerfield) Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Ken
McDonagh, Siobhain Quin, Rt Hon Ms Joyce
Macdonald, Calum Quinn, Lawrie
McDonnell, John Rapson, Syd
McFall, John Raynsford, Nick
McGuire, Mrs Anne Rendel, David
McIsaac, Shona Robinson, Geoffrey (Cov'try NW)
Mackinlay, Andrew Roche, Mrs Barbara
McNamara, Kevin Rogers, Allan
McNulty, Tony Rooney, Terry
Mahon, Mrs Alice Ross, Emie (Dundee W)
Mallaber, Judy Rowlands, Ted
Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S) Roy, Frank
Marshall, David (Shettleston) Ruane, Chris
Marshall-Andrews, Robert Ruddock, Joan
Martlew, Eric Russell, Bob (Colchester)
Meale, Alan Ryan, Ms Joan
Merron, Gillian Sanders, Adrian
Michael, Rt Hon Alun Sarwar, Mohammad
Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley) Savidge, Malcolm
Sawford, Phil Truswell, Paul
Sedgemore, Brian Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Shaw, Jonathan Turner, Dr Desmond (Kemptown)
Short, Rt Hon Clare Turner, Dr George (NW Norfolk)
Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S) Turner, Neil (Wigan)
Skinner, Dennis Twigg, Derek (Halton)
Smith, Rt Hon Andrew (Oxford E) Twigg, Stephen (Enfield)
Smith, Angela (Basildon) Tynan, Bill
Smith, Jacqui (Redditch) Vis, Dr Rudi
Smith, John (Glamorgan) Walley, Ms Joan
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent) Ward, Ms Claire
Spellar, John Wareing, Robert N
Starkey, Dr Phyllis Whitehead, Dr Alan
Steinberg, Gerry Williams, Rt Hon Alan (Swansea W)
Stewart, Ian (Eccles) Williams, Alan W (E Carmarthen)
Stinchcombe, Paul Williams, Alan W (E Carmarthen)
Stoate, Dr Howard Willis, Phil
Stunell, Andrew Wills, Michael
Sutcliffe, Gerry Winnick, David
Taylor, Rt Hon Mrs Ann (Dewsbury) Winterton, Ms Rosie (Doncaster C)
Wood, Mike
Taylor, David (NW Leics) Worthington, Tony
Taylor, Matthew (Truro) Wright, Anthony D (Gt Yarmouth)
Taylor, Sir Teddy Wyatt, Derek
Timms, Stephen
Tipping, Paddy Tellers for the Noes:
Touhig, Don Ms Bridget Prentice and
Trickett, Jon Dr. Nick Palmer.

Question accordingly negatived.

Remaining Government amendments agreed to.

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