Northumberland farmer in court over failure to dispose of dead livestock

A farmer who failed to dispose of dead cattle and sheep has been ordered to pay over £6,000 in fines and costs.

Wednesday, 13th November 2019, 12:23 pm
Updated Thursday, 14th November 2019, 1:10 pm

Anthony Richard Hume, of Newburn Farm, Norham, near Berwick, was fined £3,600 and ordered to pay £2,288.48 costs and a £120 victim surcharge when he appeared at Berwick Magistrates’ Court last week.

Mr Hume pleaded guilty to four offences of failing to dispose of dead stock correctly and one offence of allowing animals and birds access to the dead stock, contrary to the Animal By-Products (Enforcement) (England) Regulations 2013 .

He also pleaded guilty to one offence of providing false dates of death of 10 bovine animals to the British Cattle Movement Service, contrary to the Cattle Identification Regulations 2007.

Animal bones found on Newburn Farm, near Berwick.

The prosecution was brought by Northumberland County Council Housing and Public Protection Service, following a visit to the farm in May 2017 to carry out a routine inspection to look at animal welfare and the records required to be kept by the farmer.

Animal health Inspectors found the carcasses, partial carcasses, hides, skins, bones and skeletal remains of a number of cattle and sheep in different locations in the fields and farmsteading. The investigation also showed Mr Hume had not correctly disposed of a number of cattle that had previously died on the farm.

The council’s head of housing & public protection, Philip Soderquest, said: “Farming is a crucial industry in Northumberland and it is vital every single farmer complies with regulations. Mr Hume’s failure to store and dispose of these carcasses, presented a potential disease risk to livestock grazing among them and to wildlife which had been scavenging off the uncollected carcasses.”

“Fallen stock should be safely and suitably handled, with measures taken, without undue delay, to stop other animals and wild birds having access to it.

“Uncontrolled animal by-products can present a risk to both human and animal health and the legislation is there to safeguard the food chain and to prevent the spread of animal diseases, protecting both human health and the rural economy.”

The council’s animal health team can advise on disposal methods and record keeping and can be contacted on 01670 623869.