Wednesday, 14 October 2009

10-year livestock ban for Radnorshire couple

A Radnorshire farming couple have been banned for keeping sheep and cattle for ten years by Brecon Law Courts, Powys County Council has announced.

Andrew and Sarah Irene Thomas of Brynwig, Llananno, Llandrindod Wells, pleaded guilty at a hearing in September to six charges under the Animal Welfare Act for causing unnecessary suffering to sheep and a further three charges for failing to dispose of sheep carcasses in a prosecution led by the council’s Trading Standards Service.

They also asked for a further 28 charges in relation to disposal of sheep carcasses under their ownership to be taken into consideration.

Magistrates today order Mr Thomas to carry out 150 hours of unpaid community service and pay £500 costs. His wife was also ordered to carry out 120 hours of unpaid community service and pay £500 costs.

At an earlier court hearing, magistrates heard that animal health officers and a vet had visited the couple’s Upper Hall farm at Heyope earlier this year following complaints that a ‘large number of sheep carcasses had been scattered over a large area’ of the farm.

Officers found 31 sheep carcasses around the farm and that some had been dead between three days and several weeks. They also found evidence that six sheep suffered unnecessarily after dying from starvation

Officers made a further visit to the farm in March and found a further two sheep that had been dead for ‘several days’ and ‘mummified dead sheep which were mainly wool’ and had been dead for several months.

Cllr Graham Brown, Board Member for Public Protection, welcomed the length of the ban served by magistrates and said: “Today’s outcome sends a strong message out to the farming community that they must ensure that animal carcasses and by-products are disposed of in the correct manner and that necessary procedures are in place to prevent cruelty or unnecessary suffering to livestock.

“The animal by-product regulations are in place to try and prevent the spread of disease by ensuring that farmers dispose of dead carcasses without unnecessary delay. Any person failing to comply with animal welfare or animal by-product legislation will be investigated and we will take the appropriate action.”

For further information on the fallen livestock rules or livestock welfare advice then contact Trading Standards on Brecon 01874 623420; Llandrindod Wells 01597 826032; Newtown 01686 617524, email or visit


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