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Last Updated: Friday, 19 November, 2004, 16:04 GMT
Simon Hart - Spokesman for the Countryside Alliance leaving the High Court
BBC Radio 4's Law in Action was broadcast on Friday, 19 November 2004 at 1600 GMT.

The bill to ban hunting became law this week. However, opponents of the bill have already launched a legal challenge to what is now the Hunting Act.

The pro-hunting campaigners say that the 1949 Parliament Act, which was invoked to force the legislation through despite the House of Lords opposition, is itself invalid.

Their point is that whilst the 1911 Parliament Act (which allowed the Commons to push through bills after they are rejected three times by the Lords) was passed by both Houses of Parliament, whilst the 1949 Act (which allows the Commons to force through legislation after just two rejections by the Lords) was not.

The pro-hunting campaigners were given a boost this week when Lord Donaldson, a former Master of the Rolls, said that, whilst he has no strong views about hunting, he too regards the 1949 Parliament Act as unlawful.

Clive Coleman talks to Dan Tench, Head of Administrative Law at the solicitors Olswang about the arguments that might be made for and against the challenge.

Law in Action


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