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It may be that the ivory bill petition started by Alastair Gibson is ‘too little too late’, but I am full of admiration for him, and for Laura Bordignon, for starting it.

I am equally sure that, if only they were made aware of the consequences of the proposed act, a very large number of people would support the intent of the petition.

Need to challenge

We must continue to challenge the fallacious arguments being propounded by those who have, so far, very effectively lobbied for this law.

Lord Gardiner of Kimble, in his speech introducing the ivory bill to the House of Lords, referred to “over 70,000 responses” to Defra’s consultation paper, “of which the overwhelming majority – some 88% – favoured an ivory ban”.

Those numbers have been challenged in previous letters to ATG. As one of those who responded to the consultation, I found it difficult to answer because the questions themselves appeared to assume the need for a change in the law.

It is clear that the antiques community, including dealers, auctioneers, collectors and those museum curators who have sufficient courage to oppose this bill, have been too slow to mobilise.

That simply makes it is essential that the antiques community wakes up now and takes practical steps to refute the arguments that have been made by those who know little and care less for the extraordinary objects which have been made from ivory and which form a part of the cultural heritage of this country.

There is something real that can be achieved right now and that is to sign the petition and to inform others about it so that they too can sign. It only takes a moment.

Peter Cameron

Via email


What to do with ivory antiques

MADAM – Michael Baggott asks what we can all do with our ivory antiques when they become illegal to sell (ATG No 2355).

While I love elephants and abhor most of our simple politicians, the answer is simple. I intend leaving my ivory to my great, great-grandchildren.

By the time they are old enough to appreciate them, and appreciate them they will, this imbecilic law can be repealed and we can start trading again in fine cultural objects made from that most wonderful of materials.

Maurice Asprey

Via email