brian news

AUGUST 2013

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REMINDERS:
6 Aug - Acoustic By Candlelight to be released as download in USA
6 Aug - Brian has knee replacement surgery
5 Sep - FFAD Mayfair MPT Benefit
7 Sep - Pup Aid
7 Seo - Peaceful Badger march - Taunton


27 Sep - Brian & Kerry Ellis acoustic set, Hope For Apes Charity Ball, Savoy, London - Info: http://ht.ly/nFcr8
4 Oct - Cheltenham Festival: Live Aid discussion
15 Oct - WWRY opens Baltimore, USA
1 Nov - Brian Diableries talk Royal Photographic Society
TBA - October: Diableries Exhibition, Gallery On The Green, Settle.

**Sat 31 Aug**
BADGER E-PETITION PASSES 290,000 !! - KEEP SHARING
Direct link

Brian's 'Stop The Badger Cull' e-petition on the Coalition Government's own website is gathering huge support as it nears the expiry deadline of 07.28am on 7 September.

And still they don't listen to the voice of the people!! Shame on this UN-DEMOCRATIC Government.

Please tell your friends, family and badger-friendly contacts and ask them to sign..... this MUST break the 300,000 'sound barrier'!! Okay?! Big thanks.

** SIGN HERE **

e-Petition through 290,000

© brianmay.com


**Sat 31 Aug 13**
CHANNEL 4'S 'SAVE THE BADGER' PROMOTION SEES SONG TAKE THE CHARTS
Direct link

ATV TODAY
30 August 2013 by Mike Watkins

Channel 4′s The Last Leg earlier this week saw Adam Hills and co-hosts Josh Widdicombe and Alex Brooker urged the public to go and buy the anti UK badger culling single by Brian May. The track has now hit the iTunes top 40.

In the edition of The Last Leg which aired on Wednesday Adam said:

"It’s available to be downloaded, you can actually download that song, I don’t think it’s made an impression on the charts yet. But – we’ve kind of become addicted to this song during the week, we’ve become obsessed by it, I want to see it on the charts. If you’re watching the show now, do whatever you can to play it during the week. If you’re a DJ put it on the radio, if you’re at a wedding, make it the first dance. Seriously by next week I want to see this song on the charts, can we at least try. I mean what is it 69p or something to download it."

Since the plea, the ‘Save The Badger’ single has shot into the Official iTunes chart at number 39 … and continues to sell. Channel 4 say The Last Leg team are now on a mission to get the single even further up the charts before the next chart is announced.

I think we’ve got things wrong darling, what we need is a Tory cull. – TV Critic Queenie

Save The Badger by Brian May features Brian Blessed and YouTube sensation Weebl. Video Below: DOWNLOAD from Amazon or iTunes


Save The Badger Badger Badger - http://youtu.be/EllYgcWmcAY

The Last Leg airs on Wednesday nights live on Channel 4 at 10pm. Next week’s guest is London Mayor,

© brianmay.com


**Sat 31 Aug 13**
BADGER SWAGGER DRAWING
Direct link

A wonderful picture by the hugely talented Chara Tomani
with thanks

Brian, Kerry. Slash and BadgerBoys and Girls - by Chiara'
'Badger-Swagger' by Chiara Tomani

© brianmay.com


**Fri 30 Aug 13**
BRIAN MAY'S SAVE THE BADGER BADGER BADGER
TOPS THE UK iTUNES ROCK CHART, CRASHES INTO TOP 40
Direct link

Save The Badger Badger BadgerBritish Public Supports Brian May’s Anti-Cull Campaign. Puts Badgers in the Music Chart with May and Weebl track “Save the Badger Badger”: Tops the Rock Chart, Crashes into Top 40

Seems the great British public are rushing to respond to Queen guitarist Brian May’s cry for the public to "Save the Badgers” and support his continuing battle to prevent our countryside badgers from mass slaughter after the Government finally gave the go-ahead to farmers in West Somerset to start the cull of these much loved creatures.

In the week which has seen the start of the first badger cull pilot trial, May’s music track ‘Save the Badger Badger’ recorded with YouTube sensation Weebl and featuring the thunderous tones of actor Brian Blessed, has stormed the charts with its “badger…badger..badger” chant.

The track today reached No.1 on the iTunes Store Top 10 Rock chart, and leapt over 100 places on the iTunes Download Charts in just twenty four hours, crashing into the Top 40 at number 38 position, up from a position yesterday of 154.

Says Brian May: “The British people are speaking in their many thousands, and yet the Government is refusing to listen. We thank them for buying this track and giving the badgers a voice. Let’s get this to No.1 so Cameron cannot avoid it. This cull is unscientific, unethical and won't work. The government is set to murder 5,000 badgers and yet all the peer reviewed scientific evidence shows that the answer to the problem of bovine TB in cattle does not lie in this slaughter and that this action will be ineffective and potentially damaging to the welfare of both farm animals and wildlife. It is shocking that the NFU and the Government have been allowed to continue with a politically led policy with no basis in science against the will of the people. Badgers Rock!”

More than 2,000 badgers are lined up to be shot in the trial in west Somerset district in the next six weeks. Farmers in west Gloucestershire are also granted permission to take part in the trial culls which could take the number of badgers wiped out to as many as 5,000.

May’s anti-cull e-petition has already gathered over 286,000 signatures making it the most signed petition of all time on the official Government website. The petition closes September 7. [NOW CLOSED]

The “Save The Badger Badger” track by Brian May and Weeble, with the voice of Brian Blessed, can be downloaded at iTunes at the link: HERE

Actor Brian Blessed who gave his voice to the track said: “ A Life of two Brian’s. Brian May is absolutely inspirational and together we will beat the dark forces and save the badgers”!

Badger…badger…badger

Top 10 iTunes Rock Singles

© brianmay.com


**Thu 29 Aug 13**
PRESS RELEASE: STEREOSCOPIC ADVENTURES IN HELL
Direct link

Stereoscopic Adventures in Hell:
Brian May launches his new book with an exclusive public lecture

Bath, 21 August 2013 — The Royal Photographic Society is presenting Dr Brian May CBE and his co-authors Denis Pellerin and Paula Fleming in an exclusive 3D presentation and lecture at 6.30pm on Friday, 1 November at the Royal Institute of British Architects, London. The event and book-signing celebrates the publication of the London SterÍeoscopic Company’s Diableries: Stereoscopic Adventures in Hell.

The authors – led by Queen guitarist, astronomer and photo-historian Brian May – will present a Gothic Victorian underworld of temptation, seduction, retribution and devilish fun brought alive in colour and 3D. Learn about the origins and hidden meanings of these rare 1860s French photographs which depict an imaginary underworld populated by devils, satyrs and skeletons.

This will be the first oportuntity to hear the fascinating story of the diableries, to experience the images on screen in 3D and to purchase – and have signed – a copy of this stunning new book.

Put on your 3D glasses and prepare to be surprised!

The lecture and book-signing will take place at RIBA, 66 Portland Place, London, W1B 1AD. Doors open from 6pm. Tickets are priced at £15 and are available from The Royal Photographic Society online shop or call +44 (0)1225 325733.

Brian May and Diableries


© brianmay.com

**Thu 29 Aug 13**
DOWNLOAD "SAVE THE BADGER BADGER BADGER"
Direct link

"Save The Badger Badger Badger" by Brian May rising rapidly in charts, lets get It to no1. Download from http://goo.gl/JA7gat or http://goo.gl/BpVY4w

© brianmay.com


**Thu 29 Aug 13**
PRESS RELEASE: HIGH COURT INJUNCTION AND CLARIFICATION STATEMENT
Direct link

Badger Trust logoBADGER TRUST
29 August 2013

On Thursday 22nd August 2013 the High Court heard the application from NFU for an injunction against unlawful actions and protests in the cull areas. Some reports suggest that NFU won their injunction without any problems. In reality there have been many changes to the injunction. Badger Trust financed legal advice from Bindmans including a Barrister to represent us in court as an interested party, to ensure that peaceful and legal protests can continue. We have been told by our legal team that our presence as an interested party did make a difference to the outcome of the hearing, which is reassuring. The revised injunction was publicised, following which there were inevitably many questions. We asked for further clarification and the Statement prepared by Bindmans LLP on behalf of Badger Trust, signed and issued by Paul Ridge on 29th August 2013, can be seen HERE. [SORRY UNVAILABLE]

As you know we had to make a quick decision to finance the legal representation to gain the changes required, otherwise all peaceful demonstrations in the areas may have been deemed to be illegal. This has been an unexpected expense for us, but one that that on legal advice was needed to help ensure we all retained the right to peaceful protest. If you would like to make a donation, please donate via our website.

The e petition is nearing its closing date, so please urge any friends, relations and acquaintances to SIGN if they have not already done so. At the time of writing the number of signatures has reached over 286,000 and is trending at several hundred signatures an hour.

PEACEFUL PROTEST IN SOMERSET

I am also taking the opportunity to give you details of an event to be held in Taunton on Saturday 7th September 2013 from 11.00 a.m. until 3.00 p.m. and to ask that as many as possible go there in order to support it. If enough people attend this event it could mark an important milestone in the history of badger protection, so please ask all your contacts to join Badger Trust in Taunton. Brief details are as follows, more to follow once the Event Webpage has been set up:

"It is intended to organise a peaceful presence hosted by the Somerset Badger Patrol, in Taunton on Saturday 7th September 2013, from 11.00 a.m. until 3.00 p.m. It will be similar to the peaceful London March so dress code is black and white. Please bring banners, wear masks, dance and engage with the public. Members of the Somerset Badger Patrol will marshall the event. Taunton has been chosen because it is the County Town with good transport links. Holding the event from 11.00 a.m. to 3.00 p.m. captures those shopping just before and after lunch. The town has numerous catering outlets with toilet facilities.”

The underlying message is that many other parts of the UK will be in the same situation as Somerset and Gloucestershire if the cull is rolled out. The current slaughter must be kept in the public arena and one way to do so is to attract a substantial number of people to the event. Many members of Team Badger have confirmed their attendance.

Regards.
Dave Williams,
Chairman

© brianmay.com


***Thu 29 Aug 13**
*** BADGER BOYS MASS DOWNLOAD THURSDAY!!! 7PM-9PM ***
Direct link

Badger BoysDOWNLOAD 'BADGER BOYS' - MAKE IT NO 1 !!
Please CLICK IMAGE TO DOWNLOAD "Badger Boys" today - make it a No 1.

Badger Boys
Shirley Higton an the Bovver Boys (with Brian May)
Label: Duck Productions Ltd.
Also iTunes

CALLING ALL BADGER SUPPORTERS!!!

Please take part in the MASS DOWNLOAD EVENT this THURSDAY!

THE AIM?:
To get as many people as possible to download the BADGER BOYS charity single between 7PM-9PM this Thursday!

WHY?:
The more downloads we can get within a certain period of time, the higher we can climb up the iTunes chart! If we can make it into the iTunes Top 40, we can start getting the press involved with the campaign!

A charity song in the charts will raise a HUGE amount of awareness for the campaign to STOP THE BADGER CULL!

Remember, EVERY DOWNLOAD COUNTS & with ALL PROCEEDS GOING TO HELP PROTECT OUR BADGERS, what have we got to lose?

**************************

WAYS YOU CAN HELP:

* PROMOTE, promote, promote as much as you can - your web page, newsgroups, forums, bulletin boards, FB and Twitter!
* INVITE everyone you can to 'Like' this page!
* TWEET your favourite UK celebrities to share the campaign!
* SHARE in the comments of any badger cull articles!

***************************

THANK YOU SO MUCH to everyone supporting this campaign - we really can't do this without you!!!

LET'S STORM THE CHARTS FOR OUR BADGERS!

© brianmay.com


**Wed 28 Aug 13**
BRIAN TALKS BADGER CULL WITH OWEN PATERSON & KENDALL
(VIDEO & TRANSCRIPT)
Direct link

Brian talks about the badger cull with Owen Paterson and Peter Kendall - http://youtu.be/rB_tu-8Jf_k

Brian comments on the badger cull 28th August 2013

VIDEO TRANSCRIPT
==============

BRIAN MAY:
It's a beautiful day today our here in the countryside.  It's sunny  - beautiful August day but today is a day of tragedy because tonight, it's rumoured, that the first shots will be fired against those badgers in Somerset and Gloucestershire, and our Government Ministers and the heads of the National Farmer's Union have been out there on TV facing the camera, trying to persuade you that this is the thing we should be doing.

I'd like you to look at what Peter Kendall said - an attempt to justify killing thousand and thousands of innocent and mostly healthy badgers.  Here he is.  This is Peter Kendall.

PETER KENDALL:
"I've sat round countless kitchen tables of farming families, who have lost not just their life time's work, but their previous generation's life time's work, and they can see what's happened.  Where Government's have been prepared to grasp the nettle, whether it's Australia, New Zealand, The Republic of Ireland.  They've see in New Zealand almost TB eradicated in cattle, in Ireland a dramatic decline in TB in cattle because their Governments have been prepared to tackle all the potential elements of TB spread and not just put restrictions on cattle.  Not one bit of panic about this.  This is a very carefully thought out policy that is being tested in these two pilots, to give a glimmer of hope to those desperate families who are seeing cattle slaughtered.  38,000, and I make no apology for reappearing that, 38,000 cattle were killed last year because we failed to look at the reservoir in wildlife. "

BRIAN: 
It's quite an incredible claim to make and absolutely untrue, even if we believe the claims of the NFU and the Government that this can make a 16% difference over ten years.  That's nothing compared to the whole problem - the other 84% is untouched.  And to suggest that badgers are responsible for 34,000 cattle being killed last year is absolutely mendacious and outrageous.  This is NOT a choice between killing cows and killing badgers.  Cows should never have been killed in the first place.  This thing should never have been allowed to get out of control.  Farming allowed it to get out of control.  Farming allowed the infection to leak into wildlife, and instead of trying to cure the wildlife, they now want to kill the wildlife.  It's quite incredible and it's shameful and disgusting.

Let's have a look now at what Owen Paterson said today.  He's the Minister of the Environment:

OWEN PAERSON: 
"What's absolutely clear to me is - I've been to America, seen what they've done there - Australia, New Zealand, as I've just said, Ireland.  We are the only country with a significant problem of disease in cattle and in wildlife that has only addressed the disease in cattle.  So, like all those other countries, we have very tough cattle movement controls, we've slaughtered huge numbers of cattle - we've slaughtered over 305,000 cattle in the last ten years, but we haven't touched the wildlife.  As a result, this disease is rapidly getting out of control.  Currently there's no effective or legal cattle vaccine.  We've agreed a programme with the European Commission - that's going to take at least ten years - and they've praised us for being further ahead than most countries."

BRIAN:  This is unfortunately a red herring.  You know, Paterson is obviously reading from more or less the same hymn book as Peter Kendall, talking about other countries, which is not true, and the fact that, you know, the European Commission is congratulating us kind of makes all of us smile, I think, because you know the view of England in Europe is very bad.  We have a TB problem unlike any place in Europe because successive governments and successive NFU leaders have failed to approach the problem as has been advised by Europe.

OWEN PATERSON:
… animals… because they continue to spread the disease.  There is a role for badger vaccine once we've got the reservoir of disease down, and that's what we intend."

BRIAN: 
He actually says there is a role for vaccination once we get the reservoir down.  It's utter rubbish.  This is not the way to go it.  You do not cull and then vaccinate.  It's a nonsense, and it;s quite incredible what these people can get away with saying it.  Ask Lord Krebbs what the truth is, who spent 11 years researching this topic, and the conclusion of Lord Krebbs and the RBCT was culling badgers CAN NOT meaningfully contribute to the control of bovine TB in cattle.  But the Government is not listening.

OWEN PATERSON: 
There is a badger vaccine but is pointless vaccinating existing, diseased animals.

BRIAN: 
This kind of argument, if it were valid, could be used against using BCG in humans.  You know, if people had said this at the time, then we would have never vaccinated and presumably TB in humans would be rife right now.  It's a fallacious argument and what it means is, yes, actually you can vaccinate diseased animals, but basically you try to vaccinate across the board and what happens is it doesn't matter if some of them are diseased.  What happens is you get a herd immunity if you persist in vaccinating a certain proportion of them, and that is exactly what we did with humans.  That's what we did with our children and that's what we should be doing with our badgers.  Even if you killed every badger in the UK, or even if you managed to vaccinate them all and get rid of TB in badgers, you would still have the problem in farming and, contrary to what these people are saying, you cannot mix these tools in the box.  You cannot mix culling badgers with vaccination.  It doesn't work.  It's been shown time and time again that this is not true.  Vaccination works on a stable population.  You are destabilising the population by culling.  This is a wild goose chase.  This is plan of action which cannot possibly work.

© brianmay.com


**Wed 28 Aug 13**
SHOULD BADGER CULL BE ABANDONED? POLL
Direct link

Should badger cull be abandoned?

Have your say in Lancashire Telegraph Pol HERE : http://www.lancashiretelegraph.co.uk/news/

Current result at time of posting:Lancs Telegraph Poll

© brianmay.com


**Tue 27 Aug 13**
BADGER CULL START NEWS BULLETINS
Direct link

EVENING NEWS:

BBC Six O'clock NEWS 27032013 Start of Badger Cull
- http://youtu.be/BalFBauv2G0


Start of bager cull / arrest anti cull activist ITV NEWS 6.30pm 27082013
- http://youtu.be/O4aPVlW2fc4

 


4 NEWS Badger cull begins amid protests + Owen Paterson interview 7pm 27/08/13
- http://youtu.be/mDxRm_ULU94

4-NEWS
27 August 2013

The National Farmers' Union confirms that a badger cull is underway in two pilot areas in the west country, but campaigners turn out to protest against what they call an "inhumane" measure.

The first pilot badger control operations have begun in two sites in west Gloucestershire and west Somerset.

In a letter to its members, National Farmers' Union (NFU) President Peter Kendall said the cull was "an important step not just for cattle farmers but for the whole farming industry".

He wrote: "We cannot go on culling tens of thousands of cattle every year because of TB while knowing the disease exists in wildlife uncontrolled. It is why the NFU will be working with the pilot companies to ensure the successful delivery of these pilot culls over the coming weeks."

Around 5,000 badgers are expected to be culled in west Gloucestershire and west Somerset over the next six weeks, in an attempt to stop the spread of bovine tuberculosis (TB). But there is widespread opposition to the cull, which protesters have called an "inhumane" measure, and campaigners turned out in large numbers on Monday night at the two pilot sites to protest.

Activists protest

Somerset Badger Patrol held a vigil event in Minehead against the cull. A statement on its Facebook page after the event said: "Over 200 people tonight at the procession, thank you all so much for coming... We fight on, knowing that we are right helps." Another group, Stop The Cull, said on its Facebook page that more than 500 people turned out to protest at both sites last night.

An anti-cull activist was yesterday arrested at a site belonging to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). The man, named in reports as Jay Tiernan, who runs the Stop The Cull campaign, was chased on foot by police and arrested after climbing over a barbed wire fence into Aston Down in Stroud. He was arrested by Gloucestershire police on suspicion of aggravated trespass at the site.

On Thursday a high court judge made an order to stop farmers involved in badger culls being harassed and abused.

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson said it was necessary to use "every tool in the box" to tackle the spread of bovine TB. "Bovine TB is an infectious disease that is spreading across the country and devastating our cattle and dairy industries," he said. "We know that, despite the strict controls we already have in place, we won't get on top of this terrible disease until we start dealing with the infection in badgers as well as in cattle. That's the clear lesson from Australia, New Zealand, the Republic of Ireland and the USA."

LUNCHTIME NEWS:


BBC News Badger Cull Begins 1pm 27/08/13 - http://youtu.be/kSmHTg4Kcjo


ITV NEWS First pilot badger cull begins 1.30pm 27082013 - http://youtu.be/TgCWDzkNvyk

CHANNEL 4 NEWS
27 August 2013

Somerset Badger Patrol held a vigil event in Minehead against the cull. A statement on its Facebook page after the event said: "Over 200 people tonight at the procession, thank you all so much for coming... We fight on, knowing that we are right helps."

Another group, Stop The Cull, said on its Facebook page that more than 500 people turned out to protest at both sites last night.

© brianmay.com



**Tue 27 Aug 13**
PRESS RELEASE: OFFICIAL SHOOTING BREAKS OUT IN THE NIGHT
Direct link

Badger Trust logoBADGER TRUST
27 August 2013

The worst and most cynical onslaught ever against the British badger, a protected wildlife species, has now begun. This travesty of both science and sense is in the vain hope that killing badgers could have some meaningful effect on bovine tuberculosis (bTB) in England.

The Coalition has threatened that eventually up to 100,000 badgers could be killed in the present scheme, which is at the insistence of the cattle industry supported by Ministers. The scientific necessity of short-term simultaneous killing has been ignored while an attack on cattle-to-cattle infection, the principal cause of bTB, was inexcusably delayed for decades until now.

David Williams, Chairman of the Badger Trust, said:
‘The Trust is determined to fight on wherever possible as we have in the past through all legal avenues. Members will scrutinise everything that happens and the Trust will continue to take the best legal and scientific advice. We urge people living in the “pilot” culling areas of West Gloucestershire and West Somerset to listen for shooting, look out for wounded badgers and report all locations as accurately as possible to staff@badgertrust.org.uk or via 0845 828 7878. However, on no account must anyone enter private land or attempt to interfere with the shooters and staff’.

Some badgers could be wounded either by the official shooters or opportunist criminals who may assume open season had been declared. A detailed set of guidelines for the public has been compiled by Pauline Kidner and Dr. Elizabeth Mullineaux PhD, MRCVS, at Secret World Wildlife Rescue (SWWR) at Highbridge, Somerset. It covers:

• the need to gather clinical and topographical data on finding an injured badger;
• how to contact veterinary surgeons;
• what to ask for;
• arrangements for any post mortems.

Groups and supporters are asked to contact veterinary surgeons and wildlife hospitals in the two pilot areas to ensure action is taken if wounded badgers are found and that consistent and accurate records are kept. The official monitoring as proposed is pathetically thin with only two people a night watching to ensure efficiency, safety and humaneness, but a report on the likelihood of these being achieved has been so heavily censored as to be useless.

Now that official badger killing has started the Badger Trust will use this special version of our normal logo in cull-related communications.

© brianmay.com


**Tue 27 Aug 13**
BADGER CULL MAY BE THE LAST STRAW
Direct link

SCOTLAND ON SUNDAY
27 August 2013 by DAVIDMADDOX

COUNCIL planning departments up and down the UK, especially those in rural areas, used to have an unwritten rule: “Don’t annoy the RSPB.”

The influence and power of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds derives from a national membership of more than a million, vast land ownings and funds of around £100 million. This means that when it objects to something, more often than not it does not happen – although Donald Trump managed to beat the charity over his golf course in Aberdeenshire.

But the power of the RSPB reflects a wider influence of conservation, animal and nature charities across the UK, and this is why the next few weeks could potentially prove to be problematic for David Cameron and the Conservative Party, with the start of a mass cull of thousands of badgers. The government has agreed to two trial schemes in England because farmers have claimed that badgers are the primary cause of bovine TB. The nervousness about the project is reflected by the fact that it has already been delayed once, but it could start as soon as today.

The problem is that while bovine TB is a major concern in British agriculture, the scientific evidence linking it to badgers is debatable, and there is a strong case being made for an effective vaccine for cattle as an alternative.

Nevertheless, Tory Environment Secretary Owen Paterson, a keen shooter himself, like the Prime Minister, has been persuaded that it is worth trying a cull. It would seem to be a politically sound move: farmers want it and are traditionally Tory, while the hunting lobby in the form of the Countryside Alliance is strongly Tory. The feeling is Tories would like to kill more cute, furry animals for fun, such as foxes. But this ignores another core element of traditional Tory support: the majority of the many thousands of people who support wildlife and conservation charities and get very upset when cute, furry animals are harmed.

Of the top 100 UK charities, 15 are related to animal welfare and conservation. One of the bigger ones, the Wildlife Trusts, even has the badger as its symbol. The 47 trusts it runs have more than 800,000 members and the three biggest alone have an annual income of more than £12m. Now these charities are on the warpath and so are their – largely Conservative-leaning – memberships. Whether it is Mr Badger from Wind in the Willows or pictures of cuddly wildlife, the public has a soft spot for badgers and they even have a celebrity supporter and opponent of the cull, Queen guitarist Brian May.

Once the cull gets under way, it will not be long before pictures of thousands of slaughtered badgers are all over newspapers and the web, which is bound to provoke a reaction. Cameron has taken on traditional supporters in his party on several issues, not least gay marriage, only to see them look for alternatives, often Ukip. The badger cull could yet prove to be another damaging episode in the erosion of the Tories’ core support.

© brianmay.com


**Mon 26 Aug 13**
RICKY GERVAIS ASKS FANS TO SIGN PETITION AGAINST UK BADGER CULL
Direct link

ECORZZI
26 August 2013 by Jennifer Mishler

Ricky Gervais has joined in the fight against testing on animals, something that he thinks everyone should be against. He even dreams of one day having a sanctuary for rescued wildlife.

Until he breaks ground on his sanctuary, Gervais is helping wildlife by calling on everyone to join in the campaign against the UK’s planned badger cull. The star tweeted a petition to his nearly 5 million followers on Twitter, writing, “I need your help Twonks, #stopthebadgercull Sign please, & take one minute to save 5000 lives http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/38257 [Expired] pic.twitter.com/KX2BJetPJQ.”

The petition to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was started by Queen’s Brian May, who has long opposed the hunt. It claims that over 70% of the badger population in many areas of England will be killed. The government claims that the hunt is needed to control the spread of tuberculosis from the badgers to cattle, while the opponents are calling for “the more sustainable and humane solution of both a vaccination programme for badgers and cattle, along with improved testing and biosecurity.” They also argue that the hunt will do little to reduce the spread of the disease, and could possibly make it worse.

The government has given farmers permission to shoot up to 80 badgers each night, most of which will happen in the early morning hours when the badgers come out in search of food.

May and Gervais are not the only ones opposing the hunt of thousands of badgers; hunt saboteurs are promising to be present in the proposed hunting areas to try to prevent the cull. According to The Telegraph, activists from the group Stop The Cull say they will patrol the hunt areas in Gloucestershire and west Somerset each night, rendering the hunters unable to hunt. Stop The Cull’s Jay Tiernan said, “We will not have to stand between the guns and the badgers. Health and safety rules mean they will not shoot when people are nearby.”

According to BBC, the High Court recently granted an injunction to the National Farmers’ Union, prohibiting protests “within 100m of the homes, and within 25m of businesses, of anyone involved.” Tiernan says that activists will continue to oppose the hunt, adding “It will make absolutely no difference whatsoever. We certainly do want to reduce the numbers of farmers involved. We like to think of ourselves as being very, very annoying. We will use every available piece of legislation we can to make their lives a misery.”

Along with activists’ present in the hunt zones, protesters will also reportedly be holding other demonstrations and vigils.

© brianmay.com


**Mon 26 Aug 13**
DOWNLOAD ' BADGER BOYS' - MAKE IT NO 1 !!
Direct link

Badger BoysPlease CLICK IMAGE on RIGHT TO download "Badger Boys" today - make it a No 1.

Badger Boys
Shirley Higton an the Bovver Boys (with Brian May
Label: Duck Productions Ltd.
Copyright: (p) 2013 Duck Productions Ltd.
Duration: 2:27 minutes

Let the world know what our ConDem Government is doing to our helpless so-called 'protected' badgers.

Keep signing Brian May's "Stop The Badger Cull" Petition which expires 7 Sept at 7.38am at http://bit.ly/OvrrdW [Expired]

Please also write to your MP with your opinions of misguided and cruel badger cull policy.

© brianmay.com


**Sat 24 Aug 13**
BRIAN MAY HITS OUT AT 'PROPAGANDA' WAR ON EVE OF BADGER CULL
Direct link

SEE MORE ON SOAPBOX

Queen guitarist accuses government of taking part in campaign to discredit animal charities 'bringing fox hunters to justice'

THE OBSERVER
24 Augus 2013 by Mark Townsend

Brian May at a badger cull protest in London: 'This is all about money and power, vested interests, undercover deals and votes.' Photograph: Julian Makey/Rex

Rock star Brian May, a vice-president of the RSPCA, has accused the government of being involved in a campaign to discredit animal welfare organisations as part of an increasingly rancorous war of words ahead of this week's badger cull. Speaking before the expected start of the cull tomorrow, the Queen guitarist accused officials of utilising vested interests and elements of the media to espouse "propaganda" supporting the controversial scheme.

May, 66, said that Britain's biggest animal welfare charity was under concerted pressure from critics who had not forgiven it for its role in the successful campaign to outlaw fox-hunting.

"The current campaign against the RSPCA is scandalous, completely manufactured by those who condone bloodsports and cannot abide the RSPCA and all other animal charities bringing fox-hunters to justice," he said. "This is all about money and power, vested interests, undercover deals and votes."

The actual cull is expected to start on Monday evening in the west Somerset and west Gloucestershire pilot zones, though the timing has not been officially confirmed. The pilot will run over six weeks, during which more than 5,000 badgers could be killed as part of a controversial programme to reduce the spread of tuberculosis to cattle. May said members of the public had confirmed they will turn up to register their opposition. An online petition begun by the musician calling for an end to the cull has so far attracted [far in excess of] 263,000 names.

On Thursday, the National Farmers' Union won a high court injunction restricting people from protesting against the cull after some members said they had been intimidated and needed protection. However, lawful protest will still be allowed.

"We will fight peacefully and decently, even if the other side is behaving despicably," May said. "Many people say they will be walking their dogs nearby on Monday night and afterwards."

He also claimed that many MPs and officials from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) were finding it problematic to support the ban: "The evidence is that many Tory MPs are finding it increasingly hard to keep supporting the party line on the cullwhen their constituents are urging them not to. Sadly, it's clear that many of the honest Defra workers are embarrassed by it."

May also urged the NFU, which has accused the RSPCA of aggressive lobbying, to condemn farmers who have hassled animal rights supporters. "Nevertheless, it's apparent that there have actually been threats made on both sides. We need the NFU to acknowledge that there has been huge aggression from their side towards those who, peacefully, oppose the cull. Of course, most of the media report only one side of the problem, painting a false picture of irresponsibility of those who oppose this deeply violent act," he added.

Supporters claim that culling badgers is the only way to tackle TB in cattle, which they say is spread from infected badgers to livestock. Rates of TB in cattle have risen significantly in recent years, with 28,000 cattle slaughtered in 2012 at a cost of £100m to taxpayers. However, opponents say culling is inhumane and ineffective in controlling the disease.

But May, whose group, Save Me, founded in 2010, campaigns for the protection of animals against cruel treatment, said: "Just as justice had to be fought for in the case of the abolition of slavery, the emancipation of women, and the outlawing of all kinds of despicable practices justified by tradition and ignorance, the rights of all sentient creatures to decent treatment have to be fought for."

Defra says that the cull is important to help control a disease which is devastating the farming industry, and it rejects any claim that it is involved in any attempt to discredit its opponents.

HOW IT WILL WORK
- Badgers will be shot in the wild instead of being trapped before culling.
- Pilot culls will see the killing of 70% of badgers in each area, which could mean the culling of 5,000 animals.
- The government spent £90m on TB control in England during 2010-11, including £6.9m on research and development.
- Surveys in the 1980s and 1990s suggested there are between 250,000 and 300,000 badgers in Britain.
- Defra estimates that the cull – across a 150km2 area during the summer for the next four years – will lead to a 16% cut in bovine TB.

© brianmay.com


**Thu 22 Aug 13**
JUDGE ORDERS CHANGES TO NFU INJUNCTION
Direct link

BBC NEWS REPORT here
See also ITV NATIONAL NEWS AT TEN tonight

Badger Trust logoBADGER TRUST
22 August 2013

The Badger Trust is relieved that lawful protest against the pointless Badger cull has been protected by the High Court.

The NFU stated in open court that they have no objection to lawful and proper protest about the cull and were not seeking to restrict this. Their initial application was not accepted and after hearing argument by the Badger Trust a far more reasoned and balanced order was made protecting the rights of the Badger Trust and others to campaign for a change in this foolhardy policy. The Badger Trust will continue to highlight the folly of this policy that will neither reduce TB in a meaningful way or help the badger population.

The Badger Trust was joined to proceedings as an interested party and was there to assist the court. Mr Justice Turner confirmed the importance of protecting the right to protest and made an order against harassment of those involved in the cull and was keen to protect people’s homes.

The Badger Trust in no way supports unlawful protest. The order is therefore a welcome confirmation that those concerned about this senseless cull of badgers can continue to make their voice heard. The Trust hopes the government will soon realise the pointless nature of this cull and engage in more helpful methods of TB control rather than killing badgers”

CONTACT
Jack Reedy
01564 783129
0775 173 1107

© brianmay.com


**Thu 22 Aug 13**
NATIONAL FARMERS' UNION INJUNCTION
Direct link

Badger Trust logoBADGER TRUST
22 August 2013

The National Farmers’ Union have served an injunction to stop illegal actions in the cull area, by named persons and their organisations, but would also have the effect of introducing prohibitions against lawful protest. The restrictions currently sought go way beyond those under existing law and far beyond the stated aim, not to prevent “lawful protests”.

The injunction sought by the NFU would apply to any person protesting against the cull (presently entirely legal). It would stop photography of any “protected person” which as currently asked for includes anyone occupying a premises. In short it would prevent someone taking a family photograph.

It seeks to prevent protest taking place within 100 metres of any occupied building. It seeks to restrict noise-making such as a megaphone and would make most protests largely pointless.

The Badger Trust is not named as a defendant in the application. But it would affect ordinary Badger Trust members and supporters that want to raise legitimate concern about the disastrous policy. The Trust deplores any activity of a violent, disruptive or intimidatory nature and does not support this in any way. But the injunction application goes far beyond seeking to prevent this form of behaviour and could prevent lawful protest against this horrific and pointless cull of badgers.

For the above reasons, at very short notice yesterday the Board of Directors of Badger Trust instructed Paul Ridge of Bindmans to make an application for Badger Trust to be included in the proceedings as an interested party. The matter is being considered in the High Court at this very moment, proceedings commenced at 2.00 p.m. and are scheduled to end at 5.00 p.m. It is possible that a full judgement may be handed down today, otherwise a temporary judgement may be given with a request for the arguments to be further discussed in the near future. Badger Trust is represented by a barrister, those upon whom the injunction is being served will, we understand, represent themselves. There is no connection between us and the named defendants. We will advise you as soon as possible of the outcome.

Dr. Chris Cheeseman has been interviewed by ITV for their main news at 6.00 p.m. tonight including the regional programmes.

Dave Williams,
Chairman.

© brianmay.com


**Thu 22 Aug 13**
CRITICISING THE RSPCA IS LIKE WANTING PAEDOPHILES TO ESCAPE JUSTICE, BRIAN MAY CLAIMS
Direct link

SEE SOAPBOX FOR BRIAN'S FULL STATEMENT

TELEGRAPH
22 Aug 2013 by Rosa Silverman

Attacking the RSPCA for bringing animal cruelty prosecutions is like arguing that paedophiles should not be put on trial, the Queen guitarist Brian May has suggested.

Brian May
Brian May Photo: EDDIE MULHOLLAND

The musician and animal rights campaigner claimed that the only difference between critics of the charity and child abusers was that in RSPCA cases “the creatures involved are non-human.” He also warned that implementing a badger cull could ultimately lead to a return of the Dark Age practice of burning supposed witches at the stake.

May, 66, launched a broadside against “the Countryside Alliance, elements of the National Farmers Union, elements of the press and media and elements of the very Government of this country” after criticism of the RSPCA over its political agenda.

Clarissa Dickson Wright, the cook and countryside campaigner, yesterday urged people to stop donating to the charity until it returns to helping domestic animals and abandons its “threatening policies.”

There have also been calls for the RSPCA to be stripped of its prosecutor role following allegations, which it denies, that it has increased the number of cases brought to court so as to boost fundraising.

But May, who is a vice-president of the charity, accused its critics of “nothing less than a vicious, calculated attempt to discredit the RSPCA and destroy its powers to prevent cruelty to animals.”

He said in a statement today: “Imagine, for a moment, that the NSPCC succeeded in a prosecution against a team of child abusers. Imagine if elements of the press, in reporting the prosecution, neglected to report that justice had been done, but instead accused the NSPCC of recklessly spending its money, letting down its supporters, breaking its charter and being politically motivated in its behaviour. Imagine if a bunch of child abusers then banded together to spread vile propaganda against the NSPCC, its officers, and the very children that were abused. This terrible scenario is exactly what the RSPCA is being subjected to, the only difference being that the creatures involved are non-human.”

The charity’s detractors were “pro-cruelty”, he claimed, and formed a small but powerful group of rich, well-connected and “utterly ruthless” people. He also suggested that the true motive of supporters of the planned badger cull was to bring back “the despicable blood sports” of fox hunting, hare coursing, and stag hunting, which were outlawed by the Hunting Act of 2004.

Killing badgers “under the dishonest pretext of ‘vermin control’” would set “the value of every wild mammal at zero”, thus paving the way for the return of “these appallingly cruel pursuits,” he argued. “There is no reason to suppose that it would stop there,” he added. “We may see a return to legalised badger-baiting, bear-baiting, and even the burning of supposed witches at the stake. This is the crossroads.

“Britain at this point either allows (Prime Minister David) Cameron’s government to propel us back into the Dark Ages of barbarism, or we all stand up and cry “No!” No return to the despicable pursuits of the privileged few in the name of tradition, or hidden under the entirely bogus claim of ‘control’.”

Dickson Wright, the Two Fat Ladies star, said yesterday that the RSPCA had “lost its way” and now “leaves a bitter taste in the mouth” as it pursues prosecutions against people it suspects of animal cruelty.

Her comments followed the refusal by the Archbishop of Canterbury to take up the role of vice-patron of the charity, ending decades of Church leadership of the organisation.

© brianmay.com


**Wed 21 Aug 13**
BADGER CULLING COULD START IN GLOUCESTERSHIRE ON MONDAY - CLAIM
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GLOUCESTERSHIRE ECHO
21 August 2013 by Ben Falconer

Badger culling could start on Monday, it has been claimed. Trial culls planned for west Gloucestershire and Somerset may start on August 26, The Guardian reports.
It comes as the National Farmers Union tries through the courts to ban protesters from the cull areas. The Guardian reported today that sources inside DEFRA said the intended start date for the cull is set to be Monday.

Two pilot culls intended to test the safety, efficacy and humaneness of culling have been delayed since last year, and licences were granted to allow the shooting to proceed from June 1 this year.

DEFRA said the cull start is a matter for the contractors

The NFU will try to get an injunction under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997, against some protesters, in the High Court tomorrow.

Last year, 26,000 cattle were slaughtered because they had bovine tuberculosis. Some farmers claim badgers need to be culled in a pilot study to assess whether a wider cull will work.

Campaigners including Queen guitarist Brian May believe the badger is being blamed unfairly, and a vaccine for cattle is the best way to deal with the problem which cost the nation £19million last year.

Labour Parliamnetary candidate for Stroud, David Drew, said: "My view is that this just compounds the mistakes that the Government has made and marks a very sad day for Gloucestershire. The questions I would now ask is what safety case has been made of the threat to people in the area from free shooting. Secondly what research evidence will be accrued from the badger carcasses so that we get some idea of the prevalence of bTB with a proviso that if many of the badgers were TB free that the cull should be immediately ended."

Liz Gaffer of Gloucestershire Against Badger Shooting said: “if the aim of the cull is to see how humane shooting badgers at night is, and DEFRA have admitted many will not die straight away, then it is not surprising that ordinary, law abiding people are prepared to do something to save any animal from a slow painful death. We do not see ourselves as activists; everyone joining a patrol is briefed on abiding by the law, acting peacefully and on their own health and safety.”

© brianmay.com


**Wed 21 Aug 13**
BODGER AND BADGER ARE BACK, AND IT'S POLITICAL
Direct link

DAILY MIRROR
21 August 2013 By Daisy Buchanan

Could you resist that potato covered face?


Bodger and Badger are Back! - http://youtu.be/zVa9Fg6UGno

Some of us have been complaining that we're drowning in the waves of TV nostalgia that have been hitting our screens this summer, but it's different when an old show has a brand new message. And with the proposed badger cull hitting the headlines, who could be more deserving of a comeback show than Bodger And Badger?

In the one off, four minute episode, Bodger opens a letter explaining that Badger has been invited to take part in an "all night shooting adventure". However, the "adventure" turns out not to be the paintballing session that the duo anticipates.

In a statement, actor Andy Cunningham who plays Simon Bodger said: "The idea of people roaming around at night shooting at, and whatever they say, very likely wounding badgers, just seemed too barbaric to be true.

"But when we heard this cull was really going to go ahead, Badger and I thought we ought to do something, because the case for culling just doesn't add up."

He added ""Culling badgers would be inhumane and ineffective. It's not too late. Let's vaccinate."

The video has been created in conjunction with the charity Care For The Wild, who are asking supporters to share the video and donate to their Cure Not Kill appeal.

© brianmay.com


**Wed 21 Aug 13**
BADGER CULL START DATE SET - 26 AUGUST
Direct link

Anti-badger cull flyer
Anti-badger cull flyer on a stile near Blakeney, Gloucestershire.
Photograph: Sam Frost for The Guardian

THE GUARDIAN
21 August 2013 by Damian Carrington

Controversial badger culls in England, aimed at curbing TB in cattle, expected to begin on 26 August

VIDEO HERE
People in west Somerset are directly affected by an imminent badger cull in England to curb the rise in tuberculosis in cattle. Many local residents in the cull-zone oppose the action and are doing all they can to help the animals survive. Yet most farmers believe a cull is the only way to safeguard their livelihoods. Patrick Barkham reports

England's controversial badger culls are set to begin on the night of 26 August, the Guardian has learned.

The start of the shooting of badgers, aimed at curbing tuberculosis (TB) in cattle, will come after an injunction sought by the National Farmers' Union to ban certain protesters from farmland is heard in the high court.

The intended start date was given to the Guardian by sources within the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and elsewhere. The police are known to be preparing for the start date and cull opponents claim they have found new hair traps in the cull zones, which are used to estimate badger numbers ahead of the cull. A spokesman for Defra said: "The start dates are a matter for the culling companies." The NFU, which represents the culling companies, declined to comment.

Rates of TB in cattle have increased significantly in recent years, with 28,000 cattle slaughtered in 2012 at a cost of £100m to taxpayers. Ministers and the NFU argue that culling badgers, which can transmit the disease, is a necessary part of action against the disease but eminent scientists have dismissed the culls as "mindless" and warn that they may make matters worse as badgers flee the shoots. The pilot culls in Gloucestershire and Somerset will see about 5,000 badgers killed if completed.

The NFU's application for an injunction under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 names some individuals and is due to be heard in court on Thursday. NFU president, Peter Kendall, said: "We have applied for the injunction in response to various incidents of harassment and intimidation carried out against farmers and landowners by activists opposed to the badger cull."

But Dr Chris Cheeseman, a scientist who took part in a landmark 10-year trial of badger culling and had his car windscreen smashed during that time, said the injunction was a mistake. "It's a pretty desperate measure," he said. "The injunction has enraged people and could be counterproductive."

The start of the badger cull, postponed from 2012, is expected to result in the largest animal rights protests since the ban on hunting foxes with dogs and to see many people protest in the cull zones.

In July, the Observer revealed that the government has refused to publish risk assessments of danger to the public during the night-time badger shoots because doing so "could have an adverse affect upon the health and safety of the public". The police have previously warned of the "clear potential for harm to public safety" but the location and timing of the culls has been kept secret, which campaigners say puts those vaccinating badgers or patrolling for wounded animals at grave risk.

Cheeseman said: "I think it is likely the police will call a halt to the culls if they get nervous about public safety."

Earlier in August, the prime minister, David Cameron, said culling badgers was "quite simply … the right thing to do", without which there would be "appalling consequences not just for the cattle and the farmers [but] also for the badgers".

However, Prof Rosie Woodroffe, at the Institute of Zoology in London and also part of the team that conducted the 10-year culling trial said: "Cattle TB is a major problem for farmers but despite the urgent need to act, evidence suggests that badger culling is not an effective solution. Scientists agree that culling is unlikely to have major benefits for cattle TB control and risks making matters worse, and Defra predicts that the costs will outweigh any financial benefits."

Analysis of government data by Prof Woodroffe has shown that because of uncertainty over badger population numbers, shooters could kill every badger in the cull zones but still not have killed enough to meet the minimum number required by their licence.

© brianmay.com


**Wed 21 Aug 13**
WAKE UP QUEEN FANS! VOTE FOR BRIGHTON ROCK
GREATEST GUITAR SOLOS
Direct link

Greatest Guitar SolosVOTE NOW please !!! in new round of Guitar World Greatest Guitar Solos !! - DON'T DELAY.

Today's matchup: BRIGHTON ROCK v HOTEL CALIFORNIA.

VOTE HERE [Vore Closed]

ONE DAY ONLY TO VOTE!!

State of voting at 3.15pm 21 August 2013

Brighton Rock v Hotel California

© brianmay.com


**Wed 21 Aug 13**
NFU APPLIES FOR INJUNCTION AGAINST BADGER CULL PROTESTORS
Direct link

SEE BRIAN'S SOAPBOX FOR BRIAN'S COMMENT ON THIS

FARMERS GUARDIAN
20 August 2013 | By Alistair Driver

THE NFU has applied to the High Court for an injunction it says is necessary to protect farmers and landowners from badger cull protesters.

It has applied for the injunction under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.

In a statement, NFU president Peter Kendall said: “We have applied for the injunction in response to various incidents of harassment and intimidation carried out against farmers and landowners by activists opposed to the badger cull.

“The application was made against a number of defendants and we hope that the High Court will hear our application shortly.”

The application is due to be heard by the High Court on Thursday.

Licences to commence six-week pilot badger culls over 300sq.km areas in West Gloucestershire and West Somerset became valid from June 1. Mr Kendall insisted, however, that there was no link between the timing of the application, which he said had NFU lawyers had been working on for some time, and the start of the culls.

Since the pilot culls areas were announced early last year, animal rights activists have targeted farmers in and around the areas with threatening phone calls, letters and emails in a bid to force farmers to drop out.

Mr Kendall said resolve remained strong among farmers within the areas. “Whenever I have been down to the cull areas and I have spoken to farmers who have been intimnidated, the message I have had is that these people are determined that this needs to happen and are determined to stick togteher,” he told Farmers Guardian.

Activists have also threatened to disrupt the culls once they get underway. In an interview with Farmers Guardian, Jay Tiernan, a spokesman for the activists said: “The moment we know [the cull is happening], we would expect 200 or 300 people within the cull zone.

He said activists would position themselves at crossroads to try to identify vehicles driven by marksmen and then follow the ones they suspect.

“When we know where culling is taking place we will have a guy on top of a hill. He will be using binoculars with night vision and if he can see someone who looks like they are going to kill a badger, he will contact groups of people,” Mr Tiernan said.

He claimed activists would use ‘very bright’ LED torches, vuvuzelas and MP3 player amplifiers to produce noise ‘to let shooters know they are in the vicinity’.

© brianmay.com


**Wed 21 Aug 13**
BADGER CULL TO BEGIN MONDAY NIGHT
Direct link

The badger cull will start on the night of Monday 26th August.

Please make sure you write to your MP's and please make sure you have signed and shared the petition.

5,000 badgers will be slaughtered over the next six weeks please write to your MP and sign for them.

Sign and share the petition NOW - and send it through the roof - here: http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/38257
[Petition unavailable]

Badger Boys. Find out more at www.teambadger.org - http://youtu.be/Y0j5kMxvLqw

Badger Boys singleLet's vote for Brian May and get him to number one to show the world our objection

- BUY IT ON iTUNES - NOW

Teambadger.org

© brianmay.com


**Mon 19 Aug 13**
RSPCA FACES WATCHDOG'S SCRUTINY OVER 'AGGRESIVE' BADGER CAMPAIGN
Direct link

BRIAN ACCUSED BY FUW OF "EXTREME & AGGRESSIVE VIEWS" ON BOYCOTT OF MILK

Check out reply to these false statements on Save-Me.org.uk

THE TIMES
August 19
Dominic Kennedy Investigations Editor

The RSPCA is accused of trying to intimidate farmers into opposing a badger cull

The Charity Commission is considering enforcemnt action against the RSPCA after its aggressive campaigns are thought to have damaged its reputation in rural areas. It is the second time this year that the commission has examined RSPCA activities. The animal charity has suggested naming and shaming those responsible for an experimental badger cull and used photographs of dead sheep to campaign against live exports.

Relations between farmers and the charity deteriorated over its campaign against culling badgers. Controlled killings will begin within weeks in Somerset and Gloucestershire to prevent the spread of tuberculosis in cattle. In Wales, vaccines are used instead of culling, and some Welsh farmers blame this for a rise in bovine TB.

Emyr Jones, president of the Farmers’ Union of Wales, wrote to the Charity Commission outlining his concerns about the RSPCA’s “aggressive and threatening” lobbying. He highlighted a news report stating that Gavin Grant, the charity’s chief executive, “would be campaigning to ‘stop consumers drinking milk’ if supermarkets were unable to differentiate between ‘badger-friendly milk’ and milk from the cull areas”.

Mr Jones accused Brian May, the Queen guitarist and RSPCA vice-president, of expressing “extreme and aggressive views regarding the boycotting of milk”. May had called for people not to drink milk from areas where badgers were being killed. [Editor: TOTALLY UNTRUE !!]

“The charity also appears to be encouraging tourists to boycott those areas,” Mr Jones said. “The RSPCA is acting in an intimidatory way which constitutes an attempt to blackmail the farming industry, and farmers within culling areas in particular, into opposing a cull, while disseminating misleading and unsubstantiated information.

“Such actions have brought the RSPCA into universal disrepute among the farming community, and this sentiment is now growing among members of the general public, who are effectively being incited to engage in extremist animal rights lobbying activities.” He urged the commission to investigate the RSPCA with a view to withdrawing its charitable status.

Mr Grant told Panorama in November: “The spotlight of attention will be turned on those marksmen and on those who give permission for this cull to take place. They will be named and we will decide as citizens of this country whether they will be shamed.” The RSPCA said Mr Grant meant that ministers responsible for the cull should be identified, and it denied calling for a boycott. “What we believe is that ethically minded consumers may wish to exercise freedom of choice with regard to milk from cull areas.”

An anti-culling advertisement by the RSPCA, headlined “Vaccinate or exterminate?” and illustrated with a picture of a bullet aimed at a badger, led to 118 complaints tothe Advertising Standards Authority, which is checking whether its rules on accuracy have been broken.

The charity also became embroiled in a row when 46 sheep died after being unloaded from a lorry at Ramsgate. Most were shot by RSPCA staff when a dispute arose over their condition. The charity then released a photograph of the slaughtered sheep as part of its campaign against live exports. “The photograph taken exists as a testament to what actually occurred at the port, which had no on-site facilities to deal with the emergency that had arisen,” the RSPCA said.

Simon Hart, the Tory MP for Camarthen West and South Pembrokeshire, said that the RSPCA was becoming “more militant and animal rights-focused”. He added: “That’s coming at the expense of all those people in the regions, on the high streets, doing what the RSPCA in my opinion should be doing: working at inspector level, helping animals.”

The Charity Commission said: “Concerns have been raised with us about the charity’s campaigning activities in relation to the badger cull and live animal exports. We are currently assessing these concerns.

“We have written to the charity’s trustees, asking how they ensure their campaigning activity legitimately meets the test of furthering their objectives in accordance with our guidance, and that they have fully considered the impact on their charity’s reputation. "We will carefully consider their response in order to determine what, if any, regulatory action is required.”

Its powers include replacing trustees, freezing bank accounts and appointing an interim manager.

The RSPCA said: “We are confident we have acted properly in accordance with the requirements of charity law and the commission’s guidance.”

In January, the charity was asked to explain why it spent £326,000 prosecuting members of the Heythrop Hunt for unlawful hunting.

© brianmay.com


**Tue 20 Aug 13**
SUNFLOWER SUPERJAM 2012: 2-DVD FT BRIAN MAY OUT 16 SEPT
Direct link

Sunflower Superjam  DVD

The Sunflower SUPERJAM 2012, which took place 16 September, was a once-in-a-lifetime event that you can now experience with the release of the DVD. On stage together for the only time, you can watch Alice Cooper, Brian May, Kerry Ellis, Bruce Dickinson ,John Paul Jones, Sandi Thom, Ian Paice, Brian Auger, Mark King, Alfie Boe and a host of other exceptional musicians 'jam' at the Royal Albert Hall, making the iconic venue rock like never before.

Plus, enjoy the Sunflower SUPERJAM 2011 on the bonus disc with performances from Deep Purple, Rick Wakeman, Joe Bonamassa, Gary Brooker, Newton Faulkner and including the last live performance from the legendary Jon Lord. Produced by The Sunflower Jam charity, all monies raised will go directly to supporting the research and application of holistic and non-toxic treatments for children and young adults suffering from cancer.

Sunflower Superjam 2012 - Alice Cooper, Bruce Dickinson, Brian May, Ian Paice, More
Artist: Various Artists
Title: Sunflower Superjam 2012
Release Date: September 16, 2013
Format: 2-DVDs

Track List:  
DVD 1
Ain't No Telling - The Temperance Movement
Behind Blue Eyes - Bruce Dickinson
Black Night - Bruce Dickinson
Elected - Alice Cooper
Emerald - Bruce Dickinson
I Want To Know What Love Is - Alfie Boe
Lessons In Love - Mark King
Pictured Within - Steve Balsamo
Rock n' Roll - Alfie Boe
Sails of Charon - Uli Jon Roth
School's Out - Alice Cooper
Since You've Been Gone - Brian May & Kerry Ellis
Smoke On The Water - Ensemble
Something About You - Mark King
This Wheel's On Fire - Sandi Thom

DVD 2
2011 footage
Bohemian Rhapsody - Newton Faulkner
Born To Run - Danny Bowes
Bourée - Jon Lord
Eleanor Rigby - Rick Wakeman
Good Golly Miss Molly - Gary Brooker
I Just Want To Make Love To You - Margo Buchanan
It's Not As Big As It Was - Jon Lord & Rick Wakeman
Life on Mars - Newton Faulkner
Midnight Blues - Joe Bonamassa
Pictured Within - Steve Balsamo
Smoke on the Water - Deep Purple feat. Bill Bailey
The Ballad of John Henry - Joe Bonamassa
The Thrill Is Gone - Joe Bonamassa
Whiter Shade of Pale - Gary Brooker

2012 footage
Freedom Jazz Dance - Brian Auger
Born Free - Brian May & Kerry Ellis
I Loved A Butterfly - Brian May & Kerry Ellis
Substitute - Margo Buchanan
Help Me - Sandi Thom
November Rain - Sandi Thom
Only Friend - The Temperance Movement

Various Artists - The Sunflower Jam (Exclusive 2 DVD set) (PAL)
DVD £19.99
Release Date: 16/09/2013
Discs: 2 - PRE-ORDER

Various Artists - The Sunflower Jam 2012 (Exclusive 2 DVD set) (NTSC)
DVD £19.99
Release Date: 16/09/2013
Discs: 2 - PRE-ORDER

© brianmay.com


**Sun 18 Aug 13**
ZSL CONFERENCE - VACCINATION IN THE CONTROL OF BOVINE TB
Direct link

ZSL logoZoological Society of London, Huxley Theatre, Regent’s Park, London NW1 4RY
3rd October 2013 10.00 am to 17.00 pm

A one day conference to expel myths and explore principals, availability, practical application and efficacy of vaccines for the control of Bovine TB.

Programmes for controlling Bovine TB in the UK and abroad have inevitably led to increased interest in vaccines for cattle and wildlife. The renewed interest has been accompanied by myths and misunderstanding about the efficacy and practical application of vaccination at a herd level.

This one day event, with speakers who are all leading experts drawn from academic, government and charitable organisations, will explore the principles behind vaccination and practical use in the field.

Principal topics will include:
- How vaccines work at the individual and herd levels.
- Recent uses of vaccination for disease control and elimination in wild and domestic animals.
- Current status and prospects for cattle vaccination against Bovine TB.
- Development of oral badger vaccines.
- Practical low cost deployment of injected badger vaccination.

Followed by discussion and debate with a panel drawn from the main speakers and other experts.

Who should attend:
Politicians, policy advisers, farming and food industry representatives, conservationists, vets, and academics involved or interested in the control of Bovine TB in livestock and wildlife.

EVENT NOW CLOSED

© brianmay.com


**Sun 18 Aug 13**
ASTRO CARDS - NEW SET 2
Direct link

Astro cards Set 2Astro cards Set 1A second set of Brian's 'Astro' cards has been released by The London Stereoscopic Company.See image on left.

This complements the previously released Set 1, which is still available. (right)

Each set comprises of 12 stereo images, all astronomical subjects, created by Brian, from material from various credited sources.

The cards come in a specially created adhesive-free box, again designed by Brian, which fits inside the OWL's NEST, also available from the LSC online shop.

© brianmay.com



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