This is interesting!


Somebody, Gavin Gamble, has set up a new e-petition to ban driven grouse shooting which is being considered by the Petitions Committee!  Looks quite classy!


Website Pin Facebook Twitter Myspace Friendfeed Technorati Digg Google StumbleUpon Premium Responsive

Get email notifications of new blog posts

Registration confirmation will be emailed to you.

43 Replies to “This is interesting!”

    1. Shame really, because it would have been quite a subtle pun. However, I don't think subtlety works with the people involved.

      1. Sorry - posted this in the wrong box initially:

        I'll be signing Gavin's petition if it gets the green light and good on him for taking a stand. I'm just concerned that he might not have the influence, contacts, qualifications and status or profile, and as a consequence this won't be as effective as a petition started by you, Mark. I have no interest in anyone being in charge as such - just achieving a ban on driven grouse shooting. That said, if everyone gets behind this (Packham etc. in particular) then a fresh face could be good, as Gavin points out below. Just to be clear - I'm on the same side as Gavin, I just have my reservations about a change of tack with regards to a figure head. It might make public opinion look as though it is waning if fewer signatures are achieved this time around and we all know how the Countryside Alliance, GWCT etc. would delight in that.

    1. It's all grist to the mill in raising public awareness and all the salient issues seem to be listed. However, I would not be surprised if it were disallowed by the committee as the subject has already been debated. Are there any special rules about this?

      1. Hi Sandra. The committee rules state that it will likely be rejected if there are similar ongoing petitions but sheds no light on whether a recent previously successful petition would judge a new one unworthy or not. I suspect they will certainly take it into account!

    2. Chris, I note your concern and believe me it's one I have wrestled with. Of course Mark will always be at the fore of this debate, it's his baby and as such he will always be leading the charge. This isn't about limelight - believe me, I'd be happy to have none! However, many voices and multiple angles is surely a positive step. It would be a shame to see the most recent parliamentary debate be seen as an endpoint, especially by the opposition. A newbie voice might be beneficial, as it means some of the tiresome slurs and arguments focussed directly on Mark can be alleviated. I also believe I have identified another target market for this petition that I am able to harness at this point in time to raise the signature rate. Although these petitions have been regular and has now been debated in the commons, I think we can all agree that we need to sustain the pressure and public interest now more than ever. We are all backing a common cause, and if this petition is a flop then the onus will be on my shoulders and I'll take the responsibility!

      1. Well done Gavin, I think petitions give a great deal of focus to driven grouse shooting and I will be more than happy to get people to sign this one.

  1. Well done Gavin! Hope it goes live. There's also scope for a petition to ask Westminster for a full and independent analysis of the true economic value (or not) of driven grouse shooting. It's almost certainly displacing more business than it brings in and jobs that wouldn't compromise wildlife or general recreational use of the uplands as DGS certainly does. A petition has been submitted for this to the Scottish Government, it was being reviewed by the petitions team when our Environment Secretary announced they were going to do one, but south of the border absolutely zilch - which means there's now a significant gap there. If the worst comes to the worst and you can't proceed with this petition (I sincerely hope you can) please consider doing one on the economics of DGS instead. I was the petitioner for the one north of the border so would be better if someone else did the one for Westminster. I've known quite a few people who know how awful DGS is, but because they believe the baloney about families losing their homes if it's banned are very reluctant to take action. If it can be highlighted that DGS is an economic curse rather than a blessing then it's had it politically. All the very best!!!

    1. Les, thank you. I've have indeed had my eye on this and been following the progress and the successful tact you have taken. It's certainly something for us to consider south of the border, and I'd be interested personally to discover the real economics around DGS without all of those skewed numbers!

      1. Feel free to get in touch with me Gavin - if you go to the Ban Driven Grouse Shooting fb page, I add comments and do likes frequently so you can make a link to my profile and send me a pm. Whether or not DGS made economic sense it would still be unacceptable to persecute wildlife and damage the environment as it does, but the thing is it doesn't even make economic sense - if it was what its proponents claim it is conservationists and communities would be falling over themselves to establish it in Norway, Sweden, Russia etc. They aren't. Just one of the small herd of elephants in the room when it comes to DGS.

      2. Well done Gavin,think it really good to have someone do this and feel sure Mark is quite happy with what you are doing.
        Hope it is a petition with no connections to 38 Degrees as surely that means in my opinion that petitions with them supporting it are not taken that seriously as people sign even if not really into their petition.

        1. It is a petition to the official UK Parliament petitions scheme, Dennis. Nothing to do with 38 degrees.

  2. My slight concern is what message it sends if this petition raises fewer signatures than the last. If Gavin has a new target market that can exceed the last petition then great, but if this one raises less than the last one it allows defenders of DGS to portray a narrative of declining interest. It was a herculean achievement to get 123,000+ signatures last time. Can it be done again? If not, it may be better to abandon petitions in favour of other approaches. After all, very few petitions to parliament under this current system have ever generated any change.

    That said, if it goes ahead I will sign and wish Gavin every success.

  3. this is interesting. The important thing is it needs to secure as many people signing it as Mark Avery's petition did. Otherwise if fewer people sign and especially if drastically fewer people sign this new petition, those who support DGS will argue that the campaign against DGS is losing momentum. I'll watch with interest, clearly it isn't possible to sign it yet.

  4. I think getting another petition up and running is a good idea, however it's my view that it will only succeed if a greater number of MP's can be persuaded or signed up to the cause and who will speak in its favour. Ideally one of the members of the DEFRA committee would be a valuable ally, someone who could get some action started on the committee. Otherwise I fear the end result could be same as last time!

    1. Kelvin - I think its success will be judged by whether it affects the future policy of the Labour Party - and that will require a decent number of signatures.

      1. This would be a good outcome for sure, but would striving to get Labour to adopt this policy not best be done with them directly through lobbying/writing to their MP's etc or getting it in front of their Defra spokesperson?

        However, at this point, to try and make progress there is a need to get some traction on building a consensus of support from MP's across the party divides. If nothing else they can lobby, challenge Defra on their lack of action on the Hen Harrier Action plan, role (???) of Natural England and/or pushing for vicarious liability to be adopted!

        A good number of signatures on this petition will help all round.

  5. Very happy to support via the BDGS Facebook page. I can see the concern that this might get fewer signatures than the Mark's last one. But if we all get behind it, including with a bit of well judged 'marketing' I think we should be OK, awareness is clearly at a higher level that a year ago.

    If I've got it right, the petition won't be ruled out because there was a similar one recently. However, the Petitions Committee could decide against a further debate on those grounds. That depends on a number of things, possibly most importantly, slightly reversing what Mark says above, whether the Labour Party shows more inclination to get behind it.

    Gavin, the petition is persuasively written but if you'd like a few thoughts on drafting please PM via the BDGS FB page.

  6. I'm optimistic that this petition will gain at least as many signatures as the first because of all the work that has already been done by Mark, Chris and many more. Awareness of DGS and all it's ills is much better now and people are rightly outraged about what is going on in our uplands and want to help put a stop to it.

  7. Taking into account all of the varied comments on here I can see reason for both concern and optimism. I wouldn't want not being able to surpass the signatures of the last petition to be detrimental to the cause, it might be difficult for me to live with that, however I agree that the public are wiser, more clued up and with the right marketing and support from the right people I think it is achievable. Comments regarding Labour are well founded too and I think Lobbying Labour MPs in preparation should the petition get the required number of signatures for debate should be a big focal point. I'm taking on board all of the criticism and concern as it's important that we can get this right - the last thing I want is for this idea to be a bad one!

  8. Think it's a good idea Gavin, we'll done. My signature will be going on and like many sharing & retweeting. It let's them know we're not going away anytime soon.

  9. Well done Gavin for starting this petition, initially I had the same thoughts and concerns as other comments, but see it as a positive so let's hope it gets the green light.

    I'm sure you will get tremendous support and hope all the big players that helped with Mark's will help you too, after all, we all want to achieve the same outcome. I'll sign, share, RT and do what I can to help as it's a brave person that sticks his/her head this high above the parapet!

    Good luck #spreadtheword #stopkillinghenharriers

  10. Remember that 123,077 signatures were in favour of a ban, somehow the 'protect grouse shooters' raising 25,322 got a disproportionate time allocation.

    If the petition is rejected then perhaps a few questions might be asked about the above? OK anticipated response set against energy expenditure and why we didn't raise this straight after the Parliamentary debacle .... but they've failed to manage the social media and that's where momentum is maintained and moved up a gear?

    And if complaints have no appeal then keep putting in various other related threads, introduce VL, introduce taxation on sporting estate income etc. etc.? OK will they secure sufficient signatures for a debate, will the debate be ignored or packed as previously but as Mark says we need to enlist MPs and wider audiences who may not have realised wide range of issues consequential of the management regime in our uplands?

  11. I would support it 100% as I did Mark!
    Firstly, a bit of grammar, under "The Finances" it should read "paid for by you and me". I think it important to be correct in everything you undertake, whether grammar, spelling or facts and figures.
    I felt in the last petition we were tweeting amongst ourselves. I have since joined a Facebook group where I would probably get many more signatures. A target market has been mentioned, do you have some in mind which increase the number of signatures? I've found that undertaking a project is very hard work and may fail simply because the marketing was bad.
    I wish you good luck in your venture!

  12. Be careful what you wish for:

    'Curlew, golden plover and lapwing all bred in good numbers on the moor through the 1990s but appear to have declined after the gamekeeping stopped in 1998.'

    'We conclude that cessation of Grouse moor management at Langholm following high predation rates on Grouse by Harriers resulted in higher numbers of generalist predators, which in turn impacted on other ground-nesting birds, including the Hen Harrier'

    1. ..and what habitat management was undertaken [or not] after gamekeeping stopped at Langholm?...the cessation of driven grouse shooting is an opportunity to get our hills back in better heart, starting with getting trees back in many areas...not the same old boom and bust of burned heather...

  13. Well done for going for a 2nd bite at this government. We must get more Labour Members, and supporters, involved and off the tack of "loss of jobs" these would be replaced by work and entrepreneurs in Tourism across the country, especially where the "losses" might occur.
    I have signed


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.