As part of the #CutTheChase campaign, Greyhound Rescue Wales took part in an event at the Senedd led by Dogs Trust this week. CEO Tim Doyle and trustee Essex Havard attended along with rescue greyhound Jilly (pictured.) There was also attendance from RSPCA, Blue Cross and Hope Rescue making up the 5 supporting charities of the campaign to end greyhound racing in Wales.
The event was a chance to meet with MSs and other interested parties to discuss the call for a phased end to greyhound racing in Wales. What was clear was the cross-party agreement on the issue, with 14 MSs from various political allegiances coming forward to pledge their support for a ban on the gambling product. This comes just days after MSs from all four parties raised questions in plenary calling for more urgent action to be taken to end the practice in Wales.
There is currently only one greyhound track operating in Wales, the unregulated Valley Greyhound Stadium in Ystrad Mynach. The track is currently pursuing development with a view to registering with the Greyhound Board of Great Britain, however significant questions have been raised by concerned MPs, MSs and Councillors over extensive inaccuracies in the planning application. A groundswell of local opposition to the development has also called into question whether promoting such an activity in Wales is in keeping with wider public interest.
In a recent poll conducted by YouGov and RSPCA, just 14% of UK adults surveyed said they thought greyhound racing was in any way important to British culture, with 91% saying they neither follow nor participate in greyhound racing. With public calls for a ban on the practice continuing to grow, the question now is simply when, not if, the archaic and obsolete activity of greyhound racing comes to an end in Wales.