Just after midnight on Thursday night / Friday morning, in a remote part of the New Forest, two masked men were caught on CCTV driving a Land Rover up to the gates of Chris Packham’s home and setting it alight before escaping in a getaway vehicle.
The Land Rover exploded and the flames spread to the gates and fenceposts, totally destroying them and all the electronics attached to them.
Chris was at home, alone, at the time.
[Footage from Chris’s CCTV showing one of the arsonists exiting the Land Rover and doing his best to avoid the camera]
[Footage of the inferno, caught on CCTV]
[What was left of the burned out wreckage after Hampshire Fire Service had attended the scene]
[The charred gates and electronics]
This is the latest attack in a long-running campaign of intimidation and harassment against my friend & colleague. Previous incidents have included dead crows being hung from his gate, a snared fox being dumped on his drive, a dead badger hung from his gate and excrement and death threats being sent to him in the post.
These events all sit alongside the daily offensive abuse and harassment he receives on social media, probably emboldened by a long-running campaign, led by some particularly vile and high profile individuals in the shooting industry, to have him sacked from the BBC just for speaking out on issues such as raptor persecution, unsustainable shooting and animal abuse.
This arson attack is a clear escalation in threat and is of serious concern.
I would hope that leading figures in the shooting industry will respond with leadership, integrity and decency, and ‘call off’ the thugs before this violence escalates even further.
Below is a video message from Chris:
Media coverage of this latest attack:
Daily Mirror here
BBC news here
Sky News here
The Sun here
The Guardian here
The Times here
UPDATE 14th October 2021: Attack on Chris Packham put into wider context (here)
UPDATE 19th October 2021: With straight faces, shooting org BASC denies encouraging online abuse of Chris Packham, his step-daughter and others (here)
UPDATE 22nd December 2021: Police release CCTV image linked to arson attack at Chris Packham’s home (here)
UPDATE 15th March 2022: Firebomb at Chris Packham’s house – new evidence to be revealed on Crimewatch (here)
UPDATE 16th March 2022: Police describe arson attack at Chris Packham’s home as ‘absolutely terrifying’ & appeal for information (here)