Ukip-vs-EUkip

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Robin Page – A Great Loss To UKIP due to Farage’s Insecurity / Ego

Posted by Greg Lance - Watkins (Greg_L-W) on 15/07/2014

Robin Page – A Great Loss To UKIP due to Farage’s Insecurity / Ego
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Robin Page – A Great Loss To UKIP due to Farage’s Insecurity / Ego but he is not alone CLICK HERE

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Game Fair: Glastonbury for the green welly brigade

Attended by as many people as Glastonbury, the CLA Game Fair is a chance to champion all that’s great about rural Britain

CLA Game Fair: The annual rural event at Blenheim Palace attracts the same number of people at Glastonbury

CLA Game Fair: The annual rural event at Blenheim Palace attracts the same number of people at Glastonbury 
 

It doesn’t seem possible. One of the highlights of the rural year is here again already – well almost. The CLA Game Fair will be held at Blenheim Palace, in Oxfordshire, next weekend. I will be there on all three days and I hope to meet as many readers as possible. I will spend as much time as I can on the stand of the Countryside Restoration Trust, although I ought to confess that on Friday 18 I shall be busy “networking” for much of the day – a deceitful way of saying that for some of the time I will be socialising, meeting old friends, eating, drinking and gossiping. Enjoying myself, in other words.

I also have to work for one hour on the Friday, between 11am and midday, when I am taking part in a debate at the Game Fair Theatre titled: “Would the countryside be better off if we left the EU?” It will be an interesting debate for me, the first time since 2008 that I will have met my old “friend” Nigel Farage, leader of Ukip– another panel member. In days gone by, Nigel pleaded with me to join Ukip; he was a guest at my wedding and visited Lark Rise Farm. When, in 2008, I was mysteriously disqualified from Ukip’s MEP selection process, I phoned Nigel, who blamed Ukip’s “political committee”.

At a public meeting shortly afterwards, the party chairman was asked who was on the political committee. He replied: “Nigel Farage.” With friends like that, who needs enemies? At the debate I shall be wearing a back-protector – I want to ensure that I can’t be stabbed from behind twice.

Interestingly, another who has benefited from Nigel’s “friendship” in a vaguely similar way in the past, and who has also been lost to Ukip, is Richard North, collaborator in all things nonsensical about the EU with the Sunday Telegraph’s stalwart Christopher Booker. What a loss for the sake of a political ego.

Even more interestingly, in 2008 Ukip was “green”. Since then it appears to have been “ungreened” by positioning itself well to the right of Margaret Thatcher on the free market and globalisation – presumably at the behest of the “political committee” again.

While at the Game Fair, visitors will be able to simultaneously celebrate another great event, “National Countryside Week” (July 14-20), started by the Prince’s Countryside Fund in 2010. Already it has raised nearly £4  million for rural-based enterprises and causes. If only more politicians would take the interests of the countryside as seriously as the Prince of Wales. Attendees will be able to “Walk a Country Mile” — any distance they like, in fact — to make a contribution to the Fund. More details on page 18 of Weekend, and in the special Countryside Week edition of Life tomorrow. There will be a celebrity walk too, with Alan Titchmarsh, England rugby captain Phil Vickery and J B Gill from boy-band JLS. Sorry, I can tell you nothing about JLS as I am stuck in the time-warp of The Wurzels – and proud of it.

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The recently published impartiality review produced for the BBC Trust describes in a very restrained way how disgracefully the BBC regards the Game Fair and the Countryside Alliance. It points out that there will be about the same number of people attending the Game Fair as attend Glastonbury– the difference, of course, is that Glastonbury streams constantly through all the BBC’s main outlets for more than the festival’s three days, whereas when the Game Fair is in full swing, how many minutes will be broadcast by Countryfile, The One Show, the Today programme, Farming Today and so on “live from the Game Fair”? Let’s wait and see.

Yet, as the report says, millions are involved with country sports. There are 500,000 game shooters alone and two million hectares (nearly five million acres) actively managed for conservation because of shooting. Then there are the people the report does not mention – the beaters, the gamekeepers, the gunmakers, the butchers and the people like me who do not shoot but enjoy eating roast pheasant.

The report also mentions the “fraught” relationship between the Countryside Alliance and the BBC – and, of course, it is only “fraught” because so many BBC programme makers do not understand the countryside and have prejudiced, “townie” views concerning country sports.

In evidence submitted to the report, Steve Peacock, former editor of Farming Today and agricultural adviser to The Archers, sums it up best: “The BBC has got better about nations and regions, about ethnic minorities but not about including the rural dimension.” So much for the BBC’s take on the modern-day obsession with “equality and diversity”.

It still grates with me that both David Bellamy and I were erased from the BBC because of our support for the Countryside Marches organised by the Countryside Alliance (and our views of the EU). The irony is that neither of us hunts, shoots or fishes.

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The Game Fairjust oozes the “real” countryside. There are so many brilliant artists and sculptors whose work can be seen there – Rodger McPhail, Ashley Boon, Simon Gudgeon and many more. Yet they too are often ignored by chunks of the mainstream non-sporting media who should be interested in their outstanding talent. Oh, I almost forgot the wonderful Tania Still, who painted the fantastic fox hound Corset, which I walked when she was a puppy. The incredible Corset, now 14 years old, is still alive and well and enjoying her retirement living with my sister Rachael. What a dog – sorry, hound. I deliberately leave my chequebook and credit cards at home when visiting the Game Fair so that I don’t act too impulsively when I see a picture I like.

Fly casting in the lakes and the activities in the main ring inevitably attract me. I love the parade of hounds, as well; the relationship between the huntsman and his pack is astonishing, as is the bond between man and dog. To me, as a non-hunter, the “hunting ban” remains an illiberal act of undiluted prejudice and shame. And now manufactured pressure is building up on shooting, too.

Then there are the terrier races, falconry displays and so much more. The Game Fair shows that, despite the urbanisation of Britain, and the BBC’s coverage of the countryside, the heart of the “real” countryside still beats strong.

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Now I have a confession to make. In addition to the Game Fair, visiting Blenheim is almost like a pilgrimage for me. It is the original home of one of my favourite apples, the Blenheim Orange. The apple was found by a tailor named George Kempster, at Blenheim, in about 1740. He then grew it on from pips and, because of its outstanding taste, it quickly spread across Europe and America. When horticulturist and brewer Richard Cox later crossed it with a Ribston Pippin, it became the unbeatable Cox’s Orange Pippin – and our next crop looks promising in the garden, gales permitting.

To view the origional article & numerous others about the countryside by Robin CLICK HERE

 

For more information on the CLA Game Fair:

Web Site: gamefair.co.uk Twitter: @thegamefair Facebook: Facebook.com/clagamefair

Whilst on the subject of the countryside it is worth noting The Government Cabinet reshuffle – Owen Paterson must be very pleased to have been relieved of his role as Countryside Minister as he is no longer bound by Cabinet constraints and can take up his position as a leading EUroSceptic.
May I suggest, nay even hazzard a guess, that we may even see him ‘break cover’ shortly and position himself to lead the Leave-The-EU campaign in the referendum, which The Farage Cult are doing so much to damage, Owen paterson in place would of course silence Farage’s self serving and dishonest antics and with the well reasoned ‘EXit & Survival Plan’ as presented by FleXcit supporting him he would be in a good position to work towards a NO vote and implementation of Article #50 by the British Government to Leave-The-EU.
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Regards,

Greg_L-W..

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Posted by: Greg Lance-Watkins

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