Residents have reported a number of cars were left damaged during a New Year’s hunt meet in Hornby, Lancaster, yesterday (Monday 2nd January). Vandals appear to have scraped keys or another sharp object along car doors parked while owners attended the meet.
The meet had attracted hundreds of local people, who had gathered outside The Royal Oak pub on Main Street to see off hounds and horses before a trail hunt in the surrounding area. A small group of anti-hunt protestors had also been spotted near the meet’s starting point.
Taking to the Hornby Village Group Facebook group in a plea for CCTV footage, one member of the public – thought to be a victim – posted a picture of a blue vehicle which had a prominent slash along the side door.
She said: “Does anyone have any CCTV between the castle and the swimming pool seeing the roadside? 30+ cars have been damaged, including ours, while watching the hunt”.
They added: “All the cars have been damaged on the pavement side, so someone’s just done it walking down the pavement”.
Other users replied to say their vehicles had been damaged too, while another noted that local police had been “stopping a couple of protesters”. They added, “it’s such a shame for you guys and for the hunt The Oak loved them setting off from there today”.
Another said: “ I saw a number of elderly people up by our car who were distressed about their cars being keyed”.
A spokesperson for the Countryside Alliance said: “We have received a report and understand from social media that stationary cars, which were presumably parked to attend the popular New Year’s Hunt meet, were targeted with criminal damage today in Hornby. This is obviously incredibly distressing for the victims and we would urge anyone with information about the perpetrator(s) to notify the police immediately.”
The Vale Lune Harriers said victims should report the damage to local police to log the crime via 101, swiftly.
A representative from the Vale of Lune Harriers said: “The Hunt has been made aware of reports about criminal damage directed at what we believe to people who had come to support us. However, we understand victims also included other members of the public too. This mindless act of vandalism is completely unacceptable, irrespective of what view anyone may have about trail hunting. We hope whoever is responsible for the damage can be brought to justice swiftly. We would like to extend our thoughts to any victims of today’s mindless, thuggish act.”