Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 9°C

min temp: 5°C

ESTD 1874 Search

UK: Ruling due on badger cull challenge

11:49 29 August 2014

badger

badger

The High Court will rule today on an 11th-hour challenge to a government decision to let the latest badger cull go ahead without monitoring by a panel of independent experts.

shares

The Badger Trust is seeking a ruling to block “controlled shooting” of free-roaming badgers in Gloucestershire and Somerset unless a panel is put in place.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is testing whether the shooting method can be rolled out to other parts of the country to tackle tuberculosis in cattle.

Last year an independent expert panel (IEP) said in a report on the first year of the four-year pilot schemes that controlled shooting could not deliver the level of culling needed to bring about a reduction in bovine TB and was not humane.

Defra decided to continue the scheme this year without an IEP in place, leading to accusations by the Badger Trust that there had been a breach of “legitimate expectation” that a panel would monitor the entire pilot cull.

David Wolfe QC, appearing for the Trust, argued at London’s High Court last week that Defra had not simply “moved the goalposts” but was also “sacking the referee”.

James Eadie QC, appearing for Defra, argued that there was no legitimate expectation of the kind alleged and Defra’s intention had always been that an IEP would only be in place for the first year of the pilot schemes.

Mr Eadie told Mr Justice Kenneth Parker there was no promise to maintain an IEP “for ever after”.

But lessons had been learned and the recommendations of last year’s panel had been “taken on board and will be used going forward”.

Earlier this week it was announced that Natural England has authorised the latest round of culling.

The authorisation letters require companies carrying out the licensed culls to kill a minimum number of badgers - some 615 in Gloucestershire and 316 in Somerset.

The maximum number has been set at 1,091 in Gloucestershire and 785 in Somerset.

Six weeks of culling between June 1 and January 31 each year are allowed under the licences, with those carrying out the cull deciding on the start date.

The Government and farmers insist that culling is necessary to tackle TB in livestock, which saw more than 26,000 cattle slaughtered in England last year, but opponents say it is inhumane and ineffective and alternatives such as vaccination should be pursued.

shares

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Fire crews rescue the man in Rumburgh - photo Jane Davis

A driver is lucky to have escaped after his car careered off the road and into a pond in Rumburgh, say eyewitnesses.

Hollesley.

Opposition has been voiced over proposals to use part of the grounds of a residential home for nine properties, including much-needed affordable housing.

The design of the proposed new clifftop shelter at Felixstowe - a replacement for an earlier modernistic design labelled as a monstrosity by some councillors.

Proposals for a new clifftop shelter labelled by a community leader as a “monstrosity” have been ditched in favour of a more traditional design.

Enthusiasts at Bawdsey Transmitter Block at Bawdsey Manor to mark the 80th anniversary of the Daventry Experiment which proved radar was possible. A £1.4m lottery bid has been lodged to preserve the old radar station.

Enthusiasts have submitted an application to the Heritage Lottery Fund for grant aid towards a £1.4million project to preserve one of Britain’s most precious pieces of war-time history and turn it into a major attraction.

Wayne Bayliss, 34, from Bury St Edmunds, is wanted for recall to prison

The public have been warned not to approach a 34-year-old man wanted for breaching the conditions of his release from prison on licence.

Police are appealing for help tracing a man after five bottles of spirits were stolen from a Morrisons store in Chelmsford

Police are appealing for help tracing a man they want to speak to in connection with the theft of alcohol from an Essex supermarket.

Man arrested following drug related death

Police have made an arrest following the sudden death of a man from a suspected drug overdose.

Police officers suspended from duty. Library image.

Five officers and one special constable are currently suspended from duty at Essex Police.

Breast cancer survivor Nichola Whymark and brother Alastair Wright are running the London Marathon.

A cancer survivor is taking on a marathon just 11 months after having a double mastectomy.

An impression of the new Moreton Hall secondary school.

Community leaders have made key decisions this week to drive forward a project involving a new school, sports facilities, homes, road and business park in Bury St Edmunds.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages