Wales

Newport Boxing Day hunt marred by violent clashes

Horse collides with people Image copyright Chris Tinsley/Wales news service
Image caption Some horses were startled by the jeering and cheering

Violence broke out at a traditional Boxing Day hunt between hunt supporters and protesters.

The annual Tredegar Farmers' Boxing Day Hunt was marred by clashes in Bassaleg, Newport, between some of the 200 or more people watching the start.

Onlookers, including a young boy, were almost trampled by horses that were startled by the noise outside the Tredegar Arms pub.

Gwent Police had to separate the sides but confirmed no arrests were made.

Image copyright Chris Tinsley/Wales news service
Image caption Rider struggles to control her startled horse
Image copyright Chris Tinsley/Wales news service
Image caption The hunt was following scent trails laid in advance

Riders in hunting pink and packs of hounds set out under cloudy skies to maintain a tradition going back hundreds of years.

The hunt was following scent trails laid in advance to comply with the 2004 Hunting Act forbidding the hunting of foxes with hounds.

However video footage has emerged of blows being struck between those clearing a path for the animals and anti-hunt demonstrators.

Image copyright Chris Tinsley/Wales news service
Image caption More than 200 people turn up to both support and protest against the hunt

The horses appeared scared as they made their way between the crowds. One backed into the crowd as the rider struggled to keep control while another was seen to barge into a man and boy.

The League Against Cruel Sports claim some hunts still chase and kill wildlife.

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