POLICE are investigating claims of illegal hunting by Eton College’s beagling club at a country estate in North Yorkshire.

The League Against Cruel Sports (LACS) says it filmed a hare being pursued by Eton College dogs at Aldby Park in Buttercrambe near York in October last year.

LACS claims the school’s beagling club allowed its dogs to chase the hare at the country estate and has called on the famous public school to carry out an internal inquiry.

It has also handed its video footage over to North Yorkshire Police, who said they will be investigating the matter.

A spokesman for Eton College said: "Eton College takes its legal responsibilities extremely seriously and expects all school activities to comply with the law.

"We are investigating this allegation as a matter of urgency and will be co-operating fully with the relevant authorities."

The League Against Cruel Sports said it believed members of the hunt were wearing the Eton College Beagles' "distinctive uniform of brown velvet jackets".

A spokesman said the footage, taken during the school half-term holiday on October 27 last year, shows a hare fleeing from dogs after hunt staff and supporters are heard discussing its whereabouts.

The hunt staff are then heard urging the beagles on, the spokesman said.