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Campaigners against greyhound racing advocate against the sport at Swaffham Market Place

A newly-formed campaign group which is against greyhound racing took to the streets of Swaffham after plans to reopen a racetrack in the town were unveiled.

The group, which has named itself Norfolk Against Greyhound Abuse, said its outing was “well-received” when it gathered at Swaffham Market Place on Saturday, November 25.

That is where members, accompanied by some rescue greyhounds, spoke to members of the public about why they believe racing must not resume at the newly reopened Swaffham Raceway.

Greyhound racing could return to Swaffham next year. Picture: iStock
Greyhound racing could return to Swaffham next year. Picture: iStock

They also promoted a petition to ban the sport altogether, which has since received more than 4,000 signatures.

The grand opening of the raceway was held last month, with owner Eddie Lesley previously stating that if he thought any cruelty was happening, he would “stop it”.

Suzy Grey, one of the campaigners, said: “We highlighted the injuries and deaths figures – between 2017 and 2022 a staggering 27,121 greyhounds suffered injuries and deaths, amounting to 3,818.

“Opening another track just adds to these horrendous figures.”

She added: “One lady, upon seeing the dogs, came over to us and when we told her why we were there, she said that it mustn’t restart and what beautiful dogs greyhounds are.

“Several people went off with the QR code we have for our petition, too. Some of these went into shops.

“Our petition has already gained over 4,000 signatures and grows, steadily, every day. The attitude to such an outdated and cruel ‘sport’ is changing, for sure.”

However, in response, Mr Lesley said that he had invited the group to meet with him to discuss their concerns.

However, this request has so far been turned down.

Speaking to the Lynn News previously, Mr Lesley said: “In my opinion, when a dog finishes racing, the owner should take responsibility for that dog.

“In life, you will always get bad people who treat animals badly. We will never let people race here who are like that.

“If I thought any cruelty was happening, I would stop it.”

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