CAMPAIGNERS who want to stop the “senseless slaughter” of thousands of the UK’s badgers were today staging a protest in Hampshire.

The peaceful march was expected to see up to 100 people dressed in black, white and badger costumes as they march from Abbey Gardens, in Winchester, up St George’s, Jewry and the High Streets, before finishing where they started.

It was organised by Southampton resident Anna Dale, who says she was “outraged” when she learned of badgers being killed to try and stop TB outbreaks among cattle.

She said: “We are taking away a native species that has been around for a quarter of a million years. They have been here longer than we have. It’s not humanely carried out and animals suffered. It’s really upsetting.”

The protest was expected to include speeches from Dominic Dyer, chief executive of The Badger Trust, Adrian Coward, of Somerset Badger Group, and Pete Martin, of Gloucestershire Against Badger Shooting.