A horse-riding hunt member was caught on camera appearing to lash out, striking a whip at a cyclist as the hunting group passed during an event at the weekend in Kent.
The footage seen below was shared with Kent Online, and subsequently posted on social media. It was filmed by a hunt saboteur, Carly Ahlen, who was following The Kent Hounds' meet and reportedly shows the horse rider strike their whip at the cyclist following an earlier discussion between the parties.
The scene happened on Saturday afternoon on the B2067 Knoll Hill in Aldington near Ashford, Kent Police saying that it has not received a report regarding the incident.
— KentOnline (@Kent_Online) November 14, 2023
Explaining that the cyclist was not part of the East Kent Sabs saboteuring efforts, the person who filmed the footage said it was "entitled" behaviour that is typical of "what we have become used to over the years".
"Hunt havoc is the result of being allowed to ride roughshod over the countryside due to loopholes and exemptions in the law. We need to do more to close the loopholes – and consign hunting to the history books," she said.
Kent Online says it has verified that the footage was filmed at 12.12pm on Saturday thanks to the "video's metadata", however a spokesperson for The Kent Hounds hunting group says it is "not aware of any incident taking place" and said many details remained unclear.
"The Kent Hounds is a trail hunting organisation which conducts lawful trail hunting activities," the spokesperson said. "The hunt officials are not aware of any incident taking place nor of any allegations that have been made against one of our supporters, but this matter will be looked into further.
"You'll appreciate that spurious allegations are regularly made to the media about hunts and their supporters to discredit hunting despite an alarming lack of evidence to justify such claims.
"It's impossible to identify the hunt, the location, the date, the context or any specific individuals in the video footage that has been provided. But of course, if there is proved to be any substance to these allegations, we apologise for any distress that may have been caused to those involved."
The location appears to be a bend on the B2067 (as seen in the picture illustrating this story) while the local press says it has verified the date and time.
According to the group's website, The Kent Hounds is a "friendly and welcoming group of people from all walks of life and we invite visitors and newcomers to experience a day trail hunting with us".
Social media posts from Saturday's "inaugural opening meet 2023" said a "massive thank you to all our landowners and farmers for your continued support despite the wet ground conditions. A super day had by all."
Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.