The Boxing Day Hunt will go ahead in 2013, after it has been revealed that a novel compromise has been reached by the Transport minister in discussions with ASLEF and the Heythrop Hunt.
The train drivers union had been locked in a bitter dispute over their unassailable right to strike on a bank holiday, to avoid working bank holidays, while demanding triple pay and a day off in lieu.
The Transport Secretary, Patrick McLoughlin revealed that "We in government decided to throw a bone to the hounds (and Huntmasters) to head off another looming conflict with the Met Police after the animal rights activists started using some of their former members as saboteurs. I mean 'observers'." he hastily corrected himself.
"Seeing as half the Hunt tends to be Tory MPs on their hols in any case, things were set to get a bit plebgate again. However, tube train drivers don't count as 'animals' technically, and they love disappearing down tunnels, and are guaranteed to be free on Boxing Day. The solution was right there in front of our very noses".
"The government doesn't disapprove paying the blighters extra pay for one day to allow the hounds a good chomp on some well-uphostered bolshie backside".
The proposal has met with the full support of Owen Patterson, the Minister for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Sir Barney White-Spunner, executive chairman of the Countryside Alliance, and a resounding "Whatevs" from the Head of the Met Police.