DEPUTY Chief Constable Andy Adams of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has written to police forces to remind them of their powers to make anti-hunt saboteurs and antibadger culling activists remove masks and to review their current policies, following concern that violent hunt saboteurs are wearing balaclavas to avoid being identified.

Countryside Alliance chairman Sir Barney White- Spunner wrote to ACPO in April, following a violent attack on a Badsworth and Bramham Moor supporter in Yorkshire.

Charles Warde-Aldam was badly beaten by a group of around a dozen masked people in front of his 12-yearold daughter in October last year. Arrests were made, but no charges could be brought because Mr Warde-Aldam was unable to identify his attackers.

Police have the power to make people remove facial coverings, but they do not always enforce this.

Sir Barney said: “We are delighted that ACPO supports our campaign to encourage the police to use these powers.”