Into The Wild

In Episode 051 | Week 19]  of The Sandton Times Podcast, the show discusses the plan by Environment Minister Barbara Creecy to ban the breeding of lions in captivity for trophy hunting or for tourists with Lord Ashcroft, author ‘Unfair Game – An Exposé of South Africa’s Captive-Bred Lion Industry.

Listen to Lord Ashcroft’s interview …

Drawing a Lion in the Sand

Lord Ashcroft talks to Carte Blanche, who first broadcast the Cooke Report exposé on canned lion hunting in 1997. Two decades later, the captive lion industry has expanded in scope and brutality – cubs are removed from their mothers, hand-reared, petted, then bred for the bullet or their bones.

South Africa’s new minister of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment, Barbara Creecy, appointed a high-level panel to advise her on the next steps for this industry. Last Sunday, she released her recommendations in an almost 600-page report. The findings signal a seismic shift away from captive breeding and hunting toward a new era for wildlife conservation in South Africa.

Watch interview … 

If Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds don’t now help me ban lion-hunting trophies, it will be a dereliction of duty

First published in the Mail on Sunday on 09 May 2021.  

For years, I have been deeply concerned about the plight of lions in South Africa.

Specifically, I have lobbied for an end to the barbaric captive-bred lion industry.

Last summer I published Unfair Game, in which I exposed the horrifying truth about what it really involves.

Captive-lion breeding operates under the umbrella of the respectable tourist trade, but in reality it has meant thousands of lions have been farmed and then exploited in the most cruel ways imaginable simply for profit – all the while risking human health as well.

Read more …


See the May issue of Britain at War for Lord Ashcroft’s new bravery article

Lord Ashcroft KCMG PC has had his latest “hero of the month” article published in Britain at War, the country’s best-selling military history monthly magazine.

The May issue of the magazine has four pages on the life and career of Wing Commander Forest Yeo-Thomas, GC, MC & Bar.

Yeo-Thomas, widely known simply as “Tommy’, was born in London but his parents moved to France when he and his two brothers were young so the three boys became bilingual. (more…)

Success for campaign against captive lion breeding in South Africa

I am delighted to inform those who have followed my campaign to end the captive lion breeding industry in South Africa that its government has today agreed to abolish it. This move is long overdue, but it is a triumph.

For years, I and others – notably Ian Michler and his Blood Lions team – have argued that this barbaric industry must stop. At last, those in power have paid attention.

Credit must go to the Environment Minister, Barbara Creecy, who announced the measure today at the release of the High Level Panel report on the management, breeding, hunting, trade and handling of elephant, lion, leopard and rhinoceros. She appears to have been prepared to take action in a way that her predecessors would not or could not.

In June 2020, I wrote to Ms Creecy and sent her a copy of my book about lion farming, Unfair Game, in which I was able to expose some of its practitioners via my undercover investigations.


Why it is time for ‘woke’ Norway to halt the barbaric slaughter of hundreds of whales

Today [April 1] marks the start of the whaling season in Norway, one of the world’s richest countries and often championed for its political correctness.

Yet again this oil and gas rich nation will ignore its growing number of critics worldwide to hunt and kill hundreds of minke whales off its picturesque coastline.

But does ‘woke’ Norway really need to continue this slaughter in the 21st century? I truly believe that it is time for this barbaric practice to stop once and for all. (more…)

See the April issue of Britain at War for Lord Ashcroft’s new bravery article

Lord Ashcroft KCMG PC has had his latest “hero of the month” article published in Britain at War, the country’s best-selling military history monthly magazine.

The April issue of the magazine has four pages on the life and career of Colonel John Duncan Grant, VC, CB, DSO, who was awarded the only VC for the Tibet campaign.

Grant, who was born in Rurki, India, and who was usually known as “Jack”, was from a military family. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant (unattached) in January 1898, aged 20. (more…)

Fighting fit at 103, the Capt Tom of Buenos Aires who left his homeland behind to fly Spitfires for Britain

Published in the Mail on Sunday on 07 March 2021.

As he cycles along a quiet backstreet on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, there is an occasional wobble. And as he kicks a football at the local sports club, it is clear that his best days as a player are long behind him. Yet there is nothing to suggest that Ronny Scott celebrated his 100th birthday more than three years ago – or to hint at the incredible life he once led fighting for Britain, despite his Argentine nationality. (more…)

Lord Ashcroft makes generous gift to the British Napoleonic Bicentenary Trust

The British Napoleonic Bicentenary Trust is delighted to announce that Lord Michael Ashcroft KCMG, PC, has made a generous donation of £300,000 to the Trust, to support its work in preserving the built heritage of the British Overseas Territory of St Helena. (more…)

Cold Courage

First published in Air Mail magazine in January 2021.

In January 1941, Flight Lieutenant Wilson Charlton was awarded the George Cross for disposing of more than 200 unexploded bombs – at a rate of more than three every day. But he was too busy to attend his investiture for another five years. On the 80th anniversary of his award, Lord Ashcroft tells Charlton’s story — and how his own fascination with bravery germinated and grew.

In the long and illustrious history of the George Cross (GC), few men have done more to earn the prestigious award than Wilson “Bombs” Charlton. Not only did he deal with an estimated 200 unexploded bombs in just two months but, after his GC was announced, he also showed great courage as a prisoner of war. (more…)

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