Animal rights groups to protest outside Chesterfield's Casa Hotel
Animal rights groups are organising a major demonstration outside the Casa Hotel in Chesterfield this weekend.
Anti-hunting campaigners are protesting about the hotel being used to stage the Barlow Hunt’s annual ball on Saturday, January 25.
An online petition calling on hotel bosses to cancel the event has been signed by more than 3,000 people and protesters say they will demonstrate outside the Lockoford Lane venue if it goes ahead.
A spokesperson for Locals Against the Barlow Hunt said: “The Casa is Chesterfield’s most outstanding hotel and the first place you think of for special occasions.
“You would never expect them to support blood sports by hosting a hunt ball in this day and age.
“The Barlow hunt has spent the last 12 months lurching from one PR disaster to the next, we were therefore astonished when the Casa confirmed that it would be hosting the hunt ball again this year.”
A spokesperson for Casa Hotel said there was ‘little to be achieved’ by targeting staff at the venue.
“The hotel hosts many events for a wide range of companies and organisations throughout the year, each representing a wide range of people with differing interests and viewpoints,” he said.
“We understand that the interests of different groups of people will not always align. If it is the case that some people have legitimate concerns about particular events and activities, then they should raise their concerns with the appropriate authorities directly.
“Our focus is always on providing a professional service and an exceptional guest experience whilst supporting the local economy.”
Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins said: “I am fiercely opposed to fox hunting and supportive of the Hunting Act. I am also anxious to meet with police about allegations made about the Barlow Hunt.
“However, Casa Hotel is a major employer of local people and particularly young people, which should not be disadvantaged. I don’t blame any Chesterfield business lawfully providing their services to another business.
“I also support the right of people to protest as long as they do so lawfully.”