The Carmarthenshire Hunt, based in south-west Wales, has been suspended after seven hounds were killed by up to three cars in an accident on the A40 between St Clears and Carmarthen, after they had become separated from the rest of the pack, according to the Countryside Alliance.

No one was hurt in the incident. Adrian Simpson,a spokesman for the Countryside Alliance, said it was not yet known why the hounds had become separated from the 22-strong pack, but that they were thought to be headingback to their kennels.

He said: `It was quite windy. The hounds depend on smell a lot and somehow they got separated’

The Carmarthenshire Hunt was established more than 100 years ago, and according to Mr Simpson, has never experienced anyproblems in the past: “What happened is very unfortunate.”

Director of the Master of the Foxhounds Association Alistair Jackson said that the organisation was preparing a report which, like all disciplinary matters, would be submitted to the newly formed Independent Supervisory Authority for Hunting.

Pending the authority’s conclusions, the hunt will remain suspended.