Yorkshire farmer guilty of multiple animal cruelty

An East Yorkshire farmer and his wife were banned from keeping livestock for five years, and fined £21,000 after rotting carcasses and appalling conditions were found on their farm premises.

Colin and Katherine Chambers, owners of Rotsea Carr Farm in Hutton Cranswick, near Driffield, were convicted on 12 and 14 counts respectively, relating to animal welfare, food hygiene and failing to dispose of carcasses.

The couple’s son, Mark Chambers, 25, who lives and works at the farm, was convicted of nine similar offences.

The conditions were uncovered by animal welfare inspectors in November 2008.

An estimated 70 carcasses of sheep, cows, calves and goats were found subsequently at the farm and in nearby fields.

Four animals at Rotsea – two sheep and two cows – were humanely killed.

Faeces and urine were smeared over the floor in a game plucking area on the farm.
District Judge Earl told Beverley Magistrates’ Court that the public would have eventually been harmed.

Tom Spencer, prosecuting for East Riding Council, speaking to MTJ, said: “There were some disgusting scenes which the judge took into account.”

“However, he allowed trading to continue as any retail ban would have put the couple out of business. The judge wanted to focus on the animal cruelty that had been taking place.”

The couple sell meat through The Black Sheep Meat Company, and organise the monthly Humber Bridge Farmers’ Market, which attracts around 5,000 visitors.

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