Monty Python, Alfred Hitchcock and a hunting scene with hounds in full cry are the epitome of Britishness, according to Eurostar bosses in Belgium.

Posters depicting a hunting scene have rolled out over Belgium as part of Eurostar’s latest advertising campaign to publicise the recent opening of the High Speed One line between the Midi Station, Brussels, and St Pancras, London.

Although one of the posters, of a loutish figure urinating into a china cup, has caused adverse publicity in the UK, the posters have been generally well received, said Eurostar spokesman
Gareth Headon.

Mr Headon said: “It’s part of a series of quirky, humorous images to reflect Britain as it is seen by the Belgians.

“It also features John Cleese in the Ministry of Funny Walks, film-maker Alfred Hitchcock and Prime Ministers Tony Blair and John Major — a series of images that people in Belgium associate with the UK.”

Alastair Jackson, director of the Masters of Foxhounds Association, said: “It comes as no surprise that a hunting scene is an iconic symbol of the UK.

“Our European friends are clearly preparing the way for a victory for hunting in the human rights case, which is likely to be heard in Strasbourg,” he added.

This news story was first published in Horse & Hound (20 December, ’07)