A pub has pulled out of hosting a Boxing Day hunt after receiving backlash on social media.
It made the U-turn after 'nasty comments' from people claimed to be 'on both sides of the argument' about the hunt that is carried out via scented trails.
The Raven Inn in Welshpool had initially agreed to host the South Shropshire Hunt on Monday.
But after social media backlash, the pub retracted the offer and announced: “We will not be hosting the hunt on Boxing Day. I'm sorry for the amount of anger that this has created and I'm personally sad about all the nasty comments that have been said between people on both sides of the argument."
"The most compelling argument was from an anti-hunt FB (Facebook) page who simply asked us to reconsider in kind and non-abusive language.
"We were wrong. We have reconsidered and we will learn and move on. Merry Christmas."
The South Shropshire Hunt said it was disappointed with the decision and blamed it on protesters who were not local to the area, the Shropshire Star reported.
Others who are also in favour of hunting waded in on the argument, to voice their disappointment at the move.
“Sorry to hear you have bowed to pressure. This is a countryside tradition and it’s important we all respect other’s beliefs,” said one.
Most of the sabs (saboteurs) haven't seen the devastation a fox does. The hunt and the hounds are scent trained and the horses are traditional. Hope the sabs all enjoy their vegan Xmas at the raven,” wrote another.
But many others celebrated the decision.
“Thank you for your compassion towards wild animals. As Trail hunting cannot be guaranteed to just be trail hunting, I think it’s a wise decision. I hope you have many supporters and patrons with the same compassionate views as you do,” wrote one.
“Thank you for not hosting a barbaric and evil event,” said another. “Your kind and reconsideration may have kept an animal alive, free from fear and the brutal end act of the kill. Your decision has not only been a friend to us anti-fox hunting members but to the wildlife and the poor dogs and horses who are forced to participate in such brutal acts.”
Fox hunting was banned in 2004, however dogs can still follow scent trails laid by hunt organisers which can sometimes result in foxes being injured or killed.
A spokeswoman for the South Shropshire Hunt said: "The Boxing Day meet in Welshpool has been a long standing and hugely well supported fixture for many years. It is a great shame that the large number of people that would have turned out to enjoy the spectacle and support the local pubs and businesses at the same time will be disappointed.
"Both individuals and many businesses would like to support the rural traditions, but we fully sympathise that hunt saboteurs, very few of whom are local, use social media to intimidate and threaten anyone who holds a different view to their own.
"Hounds will meet up and down the country this Boxing Day, as they have for so many years before, and the South Shropshire Hunt, despite needing to make alternative arrangements at such short notice will do likewise."
Featured Image Credit: Arterra Picture Library / Alamy Stock Photo / Google
Topics: Christmas, Social Media, UK News