Protest targeting JP McManus’s County Limerick family home deemed ‘despicable’

Aine Fitzgerald

Reporter:

Aine Fitzgerald

A CAMPAIGN by an anti-blood sports group which is encouraging people to contact the family residence of JP McManus to ask him to stop sponsoring a sport that involves “animal suffering and abuse” has been labelled “despicable” by Limerick TD, Niall Collins.

A CAMPAIGN by an anti-blood sports group which is encouraging people to contact the family residence of JP McManus to ask him to stop sponsoring a sport that involves “animal suffering and abuse” has been labelled “despicable” by Limerick TD, Niall Collins.

The Association of Hunt Saboteurs posted a notice on the website of ‘indymedia ireland’, an independent media centre network, requesting members of the public to contact Mr McManus by phone, letter or email to ask him to “stop pumping money into this horrific blood sport”, hare coursing. The same notice was sent to recipients on the association’s worldwide mailing list.

“We know this man donates a lot of money to deserving causes but publicity is scarce (almost non-existent) regarding his support for live hare coursing,” states the notice which lists contact details including an email address, postal address, telephone number and fax number for the office at Martinstown Stud, the McManus family home which is located outside Kilmallock.

“Without sponsorship, hare coursing could not continue, and JP McManus is the biggest sponsor of all,” the notice continues.

The Association of Hunt Saboteurs who describe their work as “campaigning for an end to all blood sports” and “using direct action to help save hunted animals” point out that the moving of the JP McManus sponsored Irish Cup meeting from its usual venue at Limerick Racecourse in Patrickswell provides them with an opportunity to lobby the sponsors.

The prestigious cup which carries a winner’s prize of €80,000 attracts thousands of people from across the country each year to Limerick and is said to have a huge economic spin-off for the region.

The Irish Coursing Club declared last month they intended to transfer the meeting from Limerick Racecourse and were seeking expressions of interest from clubs wishing to run the event. This week the ICC received a ‘hands off’ warning from County Limerick Coursing Club over the decision taken to switch the meeting from its historical home.

Limerick TD, Niall Collins, described the actions of the association in giving out contact details for the McManus family home in Martinstown as “despicable”.

“JP McManus’s support for the Irish Cup coursing meeting which has been held traditionally over the years, for decades, in Patrickswell is very well-known and it’s well respected.

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