Activists target town’s MP over badger cull

Belper’s MP Pauline Latham has increased security at her home after her address was posted online by animal activists.

The Tory politician was targeted by a protest group after supporting plans for a badger cull, which would see around 5,000 of the animals shot.

Mrs Latham said she has been made “enemy number one” by the site after her details were posted first in a list of MPs who the website are urging people to contact.

And after taking advice from Derbyshire Police, she is ramping up security at her home and constituency office.

She told the Belper News: “They are really quite aggressive. It is quite a shock for them to say we should be targeting people.

“I’m the top target. Because of that I was advised to speak to the local police who have carried out an assessment.

“It could go on for months and I am in London most of the time. 
“The only person at home is my husband during the week. They will be pestering me and pestering my husband.

“I hope people will be sensible and rational.

“There is a website in the UK that has printed these details and we are asking if that can be taken down, but the other one is based in 
Australia.”

Calls to drop pilot culls in Gloucestershire and Somerset over the summer were rejected by 299 votes to 250 in a Commons debate last week. Derbyshire MPs Nigel Mills, Patrick McLouglin, Jessica Lee, Andrew Bingham, and Heather Wheeler also support the culls.

Mrs Latham continued: “I’m not anti-badger. There is a badger sett near to my home. I’m not personally killing badgers. But we do need a controlled cull. It’s not the whole badger community that is going to be killed it’s going to be in two or three areas.

“If the cull doesn’t work after a certain period of time then it will be stopped. There’s a wealth of evidence on both sides but we have to try this for the cattle who are being slaughtered needlessly.”