off: Marksmen call off Roehampton cull following complaints
controllers have been forced to back down from plans to shoot up to 10 foxes
in a quiet cul-de-sac tonight after residents complained the slaughter would
management company Nightingale Chancellors said campaigners had bombarded
its office with emails protesting against the cull in Roehampton Close,
management boss Bruce Lindsay-Smith - a self-styled "Dirty Harry"
of the pest control world - planned to take “marksmen” to the
estate this evening and use live ammunition to shoot the animals. But Nightingale
Chancellors, which warned residents to keep their pets indoors tonight,
cancelled the booking with County Pest Control after police warned that
campaigners planned to stage a protest.
for Nightingale Chancellors, who refused to give his name, said: “We’ve
been saturated by emails from people who know nothing about it.
“Apparently there’s a West Sussex Wildlife Protection Group.
We’ve also been contacted by the police.” He added: “The
amount of fuss this has created is quite ridiculous, I can’t believe
people haven’t got better things to do.”
Chancellors, based in Sheen Road, Richmond, have now consulted a “humane
pest control” expert to discuss how to deal with the fox problem.
The Roehampton Close Residents Association had complained the animals were
fouling on the path and digging holes in the grounds, which they pay Nightingale
Chancellors a fee to maintain.
Lindsay-Smith insisted that shooting the foxes was the best way to get rid
of them. He said: “If rats were running round killing people they
would exterminate every one of them, but because foxes are seen as cuddly
and cute as they are portrayed in the media and books then obviously people’s
feelings are stronger against anything being done.
can’t kill foxes without using live ammunition, it’s like you
can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs.”
Matthew Woodcock, 26, said: “If there’s a man in a residential
area with a rifle and night vision goggles, it doesn’t look good for
any council. “I’m sure every time this guy walks into London
even the police think: ‘We can really do with him not being here’.
It does bring people like animal rights protesters, it’s an instant
reaction from people to think we don’t want this to happen in a residential
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