BRITAIN’S largest shooting and conservation organisation has accused anti-shooting campaigners of attempting to “commit a crime against conservation” on Ilkley Moor.
Members of the group ‘Ban Bloodsports on Ilkley Moor’ will protest outside Bradford Town Hall tomorrow (Saturday) calling for the local authority to end the lease on Ilkley Moor and ban grouse shooting there.
The scientific evidence shows that the management of sensitive moorlands for grouse shooting has clear economic, social and environmental benefits.
Tim Russell, BASC’s director of conservation, said: “Campaigning to close down grouse moor management on Ilkley Moor is a crime against conservation. Heather moorland is rarer than rainforest, under good management for grouse other threatened birds thrive and biodiversity improves – why would you want to destroy such a benefit to the environment?
“What a tragedy that the demonstrators know so little of grouse moor management that they are trying to close down a moor which won a national conservation award last year.
“Far from damaging moors, decreasing biodiversity and degrading natural habitat, it has been proven that managing moorlands for grouse shooting benefits the environment and boosts the economy.
“In the UK grouse shooting supports the equivalent of over 2,500 jobs and has an annual value of around £100 million. It strengthens local communities.”