Packham call for ‘truce’ is PR spin, says BASC

BASC judge Chris Packham’s call for a ‘truce with shooting’ as a ploy to grab headlines in the build up to the Glorious Twelfth.

National newspapers have this week carried articles which refer to an upcoming piece in a shooting magazine which will see the BBC presenter say that the time is right for reconciliation.

But BASC insists Packham’s actions do not support the rhetoric; as his pressure group Wild Justice continues legal action that threatens the future of shooting and the British countryside.

Garry Doolan, BASC’s deputy director of communications and public affairs, said: “What is being reported is spin by Packham. No doubt he will try to present himself as the reasonable man who offered to sit down with shooting and then had the offer thrown back in his face.

“The claims attributed to Packham in the Daily Mirror regarding pest bird control by farmers are factually incorrect and there to influence opinion against shooting.  It’s a classic example of his manipulation of the facts.

“Packham will try to present to the press that he wants harmony and reconciliation, while in the background he continues to run shooting through the courts on the back of the General Licence fiasco that brought the great British countryside to its knees and threatened livelihoods.

“The reality is that there can be no talk of truce while his actions undermine conservation work, farming practices and shooting. We don’t yet know the full detail of the ‘truce’ but if it is the same message rehashed then we will struggle to find common ground.

“We’ve already had a hint of his demands within the lines of the piece in the Daily Mirror. Packham will clearly impose conditions on this ‘truce’ so ridiculous and so unworkable as to be ruinous for shooting. Indeed, they would also be ruinous for the wildlife conservation and habitats he claims so passionately to defend.

“BASC is always happy to sit with people who genuinely want to discuss the good work that takes place to support shooting, who want to engage on an evidence-based level and whose actions reinforce that message.

“But let us not forget for a moment that Packham has burned virtually every bridge he has ever had with the shooting community over the course of a ruthless and concerted campaign against the countryside.  We await the full details with interest.”