Thanks to all who made it to the Dorchester meeting this evening on the possible imminent badger cull in Dorset.
It was a lively meet, and we all felt it was productive. I spoke, along with Gavin Grant, CEO of the RSPCA, and Steven Jones, the farmer who founded the ‘Not-In-This-Farmers-Name’ website.
A lot of people came up afterwards and said they felt we had demolished any illusions they had had that the cull might actually work. I’m sure we didn’t convince everyone, but there was a strong energy in the room – a feeling of confirmed outrage that such an immense crime could be about to be committed against wildlife, to achieve … probably nothing for the farmers.
We were able to arrange vaccination of badgers for a number of small landowners, right there and then, and I think at least two or three dairy chaps got at least enough information to go away and question their faith in the Government’s plan.
I hope it was a step in the right direction.
Dorset is very close to my heart … my Mum and Dad spent so much time there – their favourite moments. And now I have great hopes for the new wildlife-friendly woods near Bere Regis, that we’ll be planting very soon.
Lots of people took photos tonight at the meeting (which was packed) – but I don’t have any.
I’m sure there will be reports of what was said. I spoke about the background to the present regime controlling this country’s decision-making process. About Buzzards, Shooting, the NFU’s ‘Vote OK ‘ campaign, which helped this Cameron get to Downing Street, and of this Government’s appallingly bad behaviour towards to wildlife and the environment.
And the fact the more serious this bTB problem is perceived to be, the more desperate it is for vaccination to be prioritised, as opposed to a cull which cannot help farmers over the next 10 years.
And thanks, folks, for caring.