Ban driven grouse shooting

We’re still on Day 2 and the e-petition calling for a ban of driven grouse shooting is over a third of the way towards a Westminster Hall debate.

Here’s a map of where those signatures come from;

Here are constituencies with 100+ signatures already:

Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey, Drew Hendry MP (SNP), 209 signatures

Ross, Skye and Lochaber, Ian Blackford MP (SNP), 154 signatures

High Peak, Ruth George MP (Lab), 154 signatures

Bristol West, Thangam Debbonaire MP (Lab), 150 signatures

Calder Valley, Craig Whittaker MP (Con), 148 signatures

Argyll and Bute, Brendan O’Hara (SNP), 146 signatures

Sheffield Hallam, Jared O’Mara MP (Ind), 144 signatures

Derbyshire Dales, Patrick McLoughlin MP (Con), 143 signatures

Edinburgh North and Leith, Deidre Brock MP (SNP), 133 signatures

Ochill and South Perthshire, Luke Graham MP (Con), 130 signatures

East Lothian, Martin Whitfield MP (Lab), 127 signatures

Truro and Falmouth, Sarah Newton MP (Con), 126 signatures

Brighton Pavilion, Caroline Lucas MP (Green), 124 signatures

Stirling, Stephen Kerr MP (Con), 121 signatures

Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk, John Lamont MP (Con), 121 signatures

Edinburgh East, Tommy Sheppard MP (SNP), 120 signatures

Northeast Fife, Stephen Gethins MP (SNP), 119 signatures

Dumfries and Galloway, Alister Jack MP (Con), 116 signatures

Skipton and Ripon, Julian Smith MP (Con), 115 signatures

Westmorland and Lonsdale, Tim Farron MP (LibDem), 114 signatures

Moray, Douglas Ross MP (Con), 114 signatures

Stroud, David Drew MP (Lab), 119 signatures

South Norfolk, Richard Bacon MP (Con), 112 signatures

Hove, Peter Kyle MP (Lab), 112 signatures

North Norfolk, Norman Lamb MP (LibDem), 111 signatures

Wells, James Heappey MP (Con), 111 signatures

St Ives, Derek Thomas MP (Con), 111 signatures

West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine, Andrew Bowie MP (Con), 110 signatures

Sheffield Central, Paul Blomfield MP (Lab), 110 signatures

Cambridge, Daniel Zeichner MP (Lab), 110 signatures

Bridgwater and West Somerset, Ian Liddell-Grainger MP, 110 signatures

South Cambridgeshire, Heidi Allen MP (Ind), 109 signatures

Southeast Cambridgeshire, Lucy Frazer MP (Con), 109 signatures

Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweedale, David Mundell MP (Con), 109 signatures

Somerton and Frome, David Warburton MP (Con), 109 signatures

Mid Norfolk, George Freeman MP (Con), 108 signatures

Broadland, Keith Simpson MP (Con), 106 signatures

Midlothian, Danielle Rowley MP (Lab), 105 signatures

West Dorset, Oliver Letwin MP (Con), 104 signatures

North Herefordshire, Bill Wiggin MP (Con), 104 signatures

Lancaster and Fleetwood, Cat Smith MP (Lab), 103 signatures

Suffolk Coastal, Therese Coffey MP (Con), 102 signatures

Hexham, Guy Opperman MP (Con), 101 signatures

Tiverton and Honiton, Neil Parish MP (Con), 101 signatures

Central Devon, Mel Stride MP (Con), 100 signatures

It’s a brilliant start; 45 constituencies already at or well past 100 signatues (25 Con, 9 Lab, 6 SNP, 2 LibDem, 2 Independent and the whole of the Green Party in the Commons).

Looking at the map above is very helpful for indicating that a lot of the support for this petition comes from grouse shooting, upland areas. Calder Valley, which includes Walshaw Moor, is a highly marginal Conservative seat at the moment. High Peak which includes much of the Peak District NP swung Labour’s way in the last general election and away from the grouse-shooting supporting Conservative MP.

But the urban/rural split is slightly disguised on the map, simply by the fact that rural constituencies are large and urban ones are small. So I am very grateful to a reader of this blog for sendign me the following chart which uses the signatures as they stood at 30,813 yesterday evening and breaks them down for English constituencies only (to save work rather than to disparage NI, Wales and/or Scotland) according to a classigfication by the Office for National Statistics urbanity/rurality, and then by political party;

This is just fascinating – to me anyway! One thing that it shows, if one considers just the Predominantly Rural (LHS) and Predominantly Urban (Middle) seats in England, is that currently-LibDem seats outperform currently-Con seats which outperform currently-Lab seats, and that Predominantly Rural seats outperform Predominantly Urban ones. Both of these findings are familiar to me from previous e-petitions but both are very clear in these data too. So they seem to be pretty robust findings. If you were leafletting to get support for our e-petition, where would you go? And if you were using a social media campaign – what would you do/ And, remember this analysis is simply English Westminster Parliament seats.

I love the data, but even more, I love the total (now 36,740).

Please sign this e-petition calling for driven grouse shooting to be banned.

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18 Replies to “Ban driven grouse shooting”

  1. will we have any publicity at birdfair?.. get me a card to hand to folk and I'll help hand them out..........

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  2. I don’t think the LibDems have much of a policy on Driven Grouse Shooting do they? May be it’s time they did?

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  3. All very interesting to myself as well. It is not surprising that rural people support a ban. The other thing that interests me is the fate of the petition. I've signed, of course, But let's think what is going to happen. I hope that there will, after some wrangling and other things which cannot be as yet determined, be a general election. The petition will be shelved because of the general election, and I find it hard to see how it could get to parliament beforehand due to the mess the government and people in this country have allowed themselves to get into. We'll have to do it all again, but this may force the parties to state their official view on banning, and they will certainly be asked before an election.
    Interesting, indeed.

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    1. Alex - I've given up predicting things like that! Let's get to 40,000 by 11am (or soon after) and 100,000 in August (that must be possible) and then see. You never know, we may get a response from Defra very soon - but that certainly isn't a prediction.

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        1. Chris - yes I was watching too from a Waitrose car park! Just after by phone clicked to 11:00. It’s nice to get some things right. The pace has slowed now and it probably will slow further over the weekend although the Bird Fair may well help move it on a bit for next week. These things are difficult to predict because hardly anyone has perfect knowledge of what has happened so far. Very happy so far, though.

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  4. Now there's a rather strange thing. I noticed that the Bristol West constituency of Thangam Debbonaire MP is very high up on the list especially for an urban seat that's nowhere near grouse moors. The first time I did the petition to get an economic study of DGS I noticed there was a Bristol constituency which shone way, way above the rest. I assumed this would be Kerry McCarthy's one and she'd been giving it a bit of a plug. Not so, she's in the neighbouring constituency. The petition finished with Thangam's patch having 38 signees and Kerry's 11!!! So that's approximately a 3.5 fold difference between two adjoining constituencies that I suspect have demographically, socially or politically very little difference between them. Imagine if we could find what the secret ingredient is in Bristol West and add it to all our other urban areas? Methinks there's a particularly energetic individual or group there who/which doesn't like grouse moors probably. Maybe the local branch of Labour or some other party sent a strong message to supporters to get behind these petitions? Intriguing and potentially very useful to know the answer.

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    1. Les - as Bristolian, and having lived in both constituencies (and Bristol South) at various times in my early life, there is a massive difference between the two constituencies in what we could call social class. The secret ingrediet isn't very secret - it's how many middle class people there are.

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      1. This constitunecy difference is probably down to both middle and professional classes... similarly, Cambridge and south Cambridgeshire constituencies score highly on Marks petition, (and on remain-type eu stuff)... because although its quite rural, a lot of the villages comprise professionals and middle class educated folk who follow and understand this sort of stuff.. compare Hunts and east Cambs, far fewer cambridge professional commuters.

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      2. Thanks for putting me straight Mark I know you're a Bristolian and although I lived in Gloucester for six years I only got down to Bristol twice (to my regret) so could only say I suspected they were similar, knew you'd have a point to make! However, both still Labour constituencies and I would imagine there are a lot of similar ones demographically, so why such a big difference even so? I know Kerry McCarthy spoke up at the parliamentary 'debate' about BDGS and she was kind enough to email me back last year when I asked for support about the grouse moor economics petition, but in comparison to Thangam's constituency her's was very poor re signatures - doesn't she ask local LP activists to sign relevant petitions given her very critical stance on grouse moors and shooting? If I were Kerry McCarthy I'd be somewhat embarrassed the neighbouring constituency repeatedly outstripped mine in support of petitions on matters that were supposed to be significant personal concerns. Still querying this, but one thing Labour seem to be one hell of a lot better at public gestures than behind the scenes support.

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        1. The Green Party has traditionally done well in Bristol West. It was one of their targeted seats in the last general election.

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    2. Using the results of the recent European elections to estimate and map the number of votes per Westminster constituency Prof. Chris Hanretty's estimates suggest that Kerry McCarthy's Bristol East would have been won by the Brexit Party while Thangam Debbonaire's Bristol West would be a gain for the Green party.

      https://medium.com/@chrishanretty/ep2019-results-mapped-onto-westminster-constituencies-8a2a6ed14146

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      1. Thanks, not entirely surpised. I know that Bristol had a rather progressive conservation and environmental scene - was a front runner in the field of urban conservation. I also visited a recycling project there in 1989 and was impressed by a neighbouring scrap store where people would come to collect 'waste' items that were safe to use in children's playgroups. It was like watching a surreal statement on consumerism to see people pushing old supermarket trolleys down aisles and inspecting wonky cardboard tubes, badly moulded bits of plastic etc, then put them in the the trolley. I wouldn't be surprised if there's something a bit extra special about Bristol West, interesting place Bristol.

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  5. A few thoughts on Bristol West and Grouse shooting:
    * As a voter in Bristol West I believe the constituency has a reputation as having the highest number of constituents with degrees and post 18 qualifications in the country. As a result they are pretty well-informed.
    * I have found when I ask people to sign the petition they are pretty well aware of Raptor persecution and are more than eager to do what they can, even if it's only to sign a petition.
    *I made a real effort to ask people to sign in the last petition and got a brilliant response, the response is even better this time.
    *I wrote to Thangam Debbonnaire to speak at the Parliamentary debate, she said she would try, but that was the last I heard. The Green Party is now polling very highly in Bristol West coincidentally. As far as I am aware the Labour Party has done nothing to raise the profile of Raptor persecution in Bristol West.
    *As a volunteer with Avon Wildlife Trust I've found it particularly easy to get fellow volunteers to sign the petition and ask them to approach partners, families and friends to do likewise. I would urge others to do the same.

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    1. So it looks like the very high number of signatures in Bristol West has a lot to do with you! Cheers Andrew, from my perspective up in Scotland the situation looks very intriguing.

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