SIR – Most people have heard of the Glorious Twelfth – the day in August when the four-month-long grouse shooting season starts on Britain’s moorlands.

But they know little else about a ‘sport’ that is staged and undertaken by some of the wealthiest and most influential people in the land.

A new Animal Aid report, Calling the Shots 2014, is aimed at alerting the public to the truth about an activity that is based on extensive wildlife and environmental destruction.

Burning is carried out to encourage the growth of fresh heather, on which the grouse are fattened up for shooting. Roads are dug and car parks built for the visiting ‘guns’. Moorland wildlife perceived to threaten the birds is slaughtered.

Calling the Shots 2014 reveals that, under the current Government, wealthy moorland grouse shoot owners are receiving even larger public subsidies than before, as they go about their industrial-scale killing of wildlife and rural vandalism.

Animal Aid is calling for an end to the use of public money to subsidise grouse shoots and for the introduction of state licensing for those shoots and for gamekeepers. The retention of such licences would be dependent on adherence to wildlife protection laws.

Fiona Pereira, campaigner, Animal Aid, The Old Chapel, Bradford Street, Tonbridge