SIR – I must congratulate Mr Burgess on his single-minded tenacity to defend the indefensible.

I gained my knowledge by following the local hunt around Feckenham as a child, not from the internet, as Mr Burgess would have realised had he read my letter more carefully. This close personal experience of hunting folk has led to the current high esteem in which I hold them.

Mr Burgess claims the young, fit foxes will probably escape the hunt, which leaves us with the delightful prospect of the hunt in pursuit of the elderly and the sick. I hope he doesn’t take the same view regarding me when I get old and sick!

He claims concern for the distress caused by trapping but that depends on the type of trap and how you use it. Following his logic, I had better chase to death every sick, old animal I can find as an act of kindness – or I could just let nature take care of itself.

I would appreciate an answer to the central question regarding the morality of killing for pleasure which is the one all hunt supporters carefully avoid by introducing spurious counter-arguments.

Tim Palmer