A pointless Antiques Roadshow ivory ban won't save a single elephant's life

Actress Virginia McKenna has criticised BBC One's Antiques Roadshow for its stance on ivory Credit: Jay Williams

Virginia McKenna, OBE, is a much loved and respected figure for her lead role in the popular wildlife film, Born Free, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination. She is therefore the ideal person to head a campaign to protect wildlife, specifically to ban any coverage of the value of ivory works of art on that other much loved institution, the Antiques Roadshow, and, by implication, all sales of ivory in the UK, antique ivory works of art included.

The purpose of such bans is to devalue all ivory so that it will not be worth killing elephants anymore, which sounds reasonable in a generalised sort of way. But does it stand up to scrutiny in every detail? As far as modern ivory is concerned, there is no argument.

The antiques trade entirely agrees with the purpose of the campaign – to put an end to the elephant slaughter. However, there is not a consensus on a just and rational means...

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