PROTESTERS gathered at Stourhead after groups monitoring hunt activity on National Trust land fear that hare and fox hunting is taking place, 14 years after it was banned.

Campaigners believe that trail hunting is being used to cover up the indiscriminate killing of foxes, hares and deer by allowing hunts to claim that any kills were accidental.

A spokesperson for National Dis-Trust said: “The access for this hunt needs to be revoked, and the hares that should never be subjected to this torture as a hobby need to be properly protected.”

A spokesman for National Trust said: “We have been carefully listening to both sides of a highly polarised and passionate debate around trail-hunting for years.”

“We accept these protests on our land, provided they are respectful and do not interfere with conservation or access for our visitors.”

“More information on our transparent set of conditions can be found online.”