BILL BARTLE compares fox hunting and badger baiting (HAS, Jan 16) and wonders why one is illegal and the other might one day be legal once again.

Surely the answer is obvious: fox hunting is practised by people of power and influence, whereas badger baiting is practised by those lacking the above attributes.

Badger baiters need an image make-over. New uniforms instead of grimy waterproof jackets and dirty beanie hats, a better mode of transport than battered white vans, and the odd “lifestyle” feature in Country Life would be a step in the right direction.

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Perhaps Max Clifford should be hired?

Instead of the forthcoming Government-sponsored badger cull, perhaps badger baiters could offer a cut price service and help to reduce the present financial deficit?

Seriously, there are no obvious differences, both involve gratuitous cruelty to wild animals.

Eric Gendle, Middlesbrough.

IS there something in the water or a dearth of good psychiatrists in North Yorkshire?

In a relatively short space of time, there have been two reported incidents of badger baiting, the latter case being the most heartbreaking (Echo, Jan 11).

I applaud the witnesses who exposed this vile crime, and also the police officers and RSPCA who attended.

The female judge, presiding over the court case, expressed her disgust before sentencing the four laughing examples of lowlife to a mere four months in prison.

I can think of a far better solution. When they are released from their short holiday, they ought to be escorted to the sett they disturbed, thrown into it, and then covered in the very earth they dug up.

A team of beautiful police dogs could then keep guard should those brave “men” be courageous enough to emerge from the home they desecrated.

Then, and only then, will they have some comprehension of the pain and fear those poor badgers endured.

Denise Anklam, Stanhope.