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Farmer calls for tougher punishments for hare coursers

A farmer in Lincolnshire is calling for tougher punishments to be imposed on hare coursers, as he says the same people continually target his land.

Mark Leggott, who farms just outside Boston, wants more injunctions against repeat offenders. Lincolnshire police say 161 men have been arrested or summoned to court since the start of the hare coursing season last September.

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Villagers keep up 700-year-old Haxey Hood tradition

It's the 6th of January and, apart from taking down our Christmas trees, that can only mean one thing - time for the Haxey Hood.

It's a 700-year-old tradition which sees hundreds of people turn out in the Lincolnshire village of Haxey to take part in a large rugby-type scrum called the sway which pushes a leather tube, called the hood, to one of four pubs where it remains for the 365 days.

Confused? Then see Adam Fowler's report.

Recruitment drive for on-call firefighters in rural West Yorkshire

A recruitment drive is underway to find on-call firefighters for a number of rural areas in West Yorkshire.

A series of taster sessions are being held around the county this week to encourage more men and women to work on a standby basis to provide mostly daytime cover.

They will provide cover for Otley, Ilkley Slaithwaite, Meltham, Holmfirth, Mytholmroyd and Featherstone.

On-call firefighters respond to emergency calls from either home or work and must be able to reach their fire station within five minutes of receiving a call.

Farmers to meet NFU over hare coursing worries

Farmers in Lincolnshire have been invited to a meeting with the National Farmers Union to talk about ways to tackle hare coursing.

Credit: Press Association

They say damage to farmland, intimidation and other crimes associated with the illegal sport are high on their list of concerns.

Hare coursing is illegal under the Hunting with Dogs Act 2004. However, the 'sport' is still undertaken, with large sums of money at stake on gambling on the outcome of the chase and dogs are often traded between coursers for substantial sums of money.

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UK issues licences for onshore gas and oil exploration

Countryside 'under threat' Credit: PA

The Government has issued new licenses for controversial gas and oil exploration in 159 blocks - a move which campaigners say could put large swathes of countryside at potential risk from fracking.

The Swiss based multinational chemical company Ineos has won 21 new shale gas licences in the final part of the UK Government's 14th licensing round.

The majority of licenses are located in the old mining heartlands of North Yorkshire, the North West, and the East Midlands.

The company, which is now one of the UK’s biggest Shale gas players, was awarded 700,000 acres on top of its existing 300,000 acres.

The company has committed to full consultation with all local communities and will share 6% of revenues with homeowners, landowners and communities close to its shale gas wells.

The announcement by the Department of Energy and Climate Change mean INEOS is now the biggest player in shale in terms of UK onshore oil and gas licenses, giving it access to one million acres of potential Shale gas reserves.

We are delighted with today’s announcement. The UK government has demonstrated it is determined to move forward with this exciting new
industry. This is the start of a Shale gas revolution that will transform manufacturing in the UK. INEOS has the skills to safely extract the gas and we have already committed to both fully consult and to share the rewards with the local communities.

– Jim Ratcliffe, INEOS Chairma

Government set to reveal potential fracking sites

Credit: PA

The Government is expected to announce where fracking might potentially take place in Britain later today.

It comes after ministers controversially approved plans to allow fracking below national parks, world heritage sites and areas of outstanding natural beauty.

From around midday, the government will reveal who has successfully bid for a licence to frack in 139 parts of the country. Key decisions on solar power will also be unveiled as part of the government's policies on clean energy.

Tomorrow marks the final day of coal production in the UK with the closing of Kellingley Colliery in North Yorkshire. The Government said it is now going "all out for shale" and insisted gas can be a bridge to a low carbon future.

Iconic Yorkshire images adorn Heathrow buses

Come and visit Yorkshire Credit: Welcome to Yorkshire

Iconic images of Yorkshire will greet millions of passengers at Heathrow Airport in a bid to attract even more international visitors to the county.

Bolton Abbey, York Minster and the North Yorkshire fishing village of Staithes are just some of the images to adorn one of Heathrow’s fleet of scheduled buses that provides passengers with the essential link between Heathrow’s five terminals and the 25 airport hotels.

With more than 73 million passengers a year currently using Heathrow, Europe’s busiest airport, Welcome to Yorkshire sees this as a great opportunity for the eye catching buses to inspire visitors to discover Yorkshire.

Catching eye of visitors Credit: Welcome to Yorkshire

What better way to spread the word about Yorkshire than at Europe’s busiest airport. We hope that when these stunning images catch the eye of millions of world-wide travellers they will be inspired to come and spend time in God’s Own County and see for themselves how beautiful Yorkshire is. The Tour de France promoted Yorkshire to a global audience of millions and this ambitious campaign will promote the county to many more visitors from around the world.

– Sir Gary Verity, Chief Executive of Welcome to Yorkshire
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