- Watch Derek Johnson's full report below
Live animal exports resumed today from Ramsgate despite demonstrations from activists.
It is the first time since last November that live animals have been transported though the port.
Animal campaigners temporarily blocked lorries en route to the Continent.
Thanet District Council says it's a legal trade and more exports are expected between now and the autumn.
Derek spoke to Reg Bell from Kent Action Against Live Exports, Frank Langrish from the National Farmers Union and Ian Birchall from Kent Action Against Live Exports.
Thanet District Council has been forced to pay £2.3m in compensation to companies who were blocked from exporting live animals from the Port of Ramsgate.
Exports were banned after 40 sheep died at the port in 2012 but an appeal forced the local authority to reverse the decision.
A high court ruled the council didn't have the power to stop exports, and that it should reimburse the companies for any income lost during the six-week ban.
Video. An animal export company is denying that its negligence lead to the deaths of more than 40 sheep at Ramsgate Port in 2012. The trail at Dover Magistrates involves Channel Livestock Limited, one of its officials and two of its drivers.
It is claimed that some sheep were not fit to travel and that the lorry they were on was not fit to carry them.
Derek Johnson was in court.
Campaigners from the south east have been supporting a march in London against the practice of live animal exports.
The group Compassion in World Farming planned a peaceful march against the live export of farm animals, to highlight what it calls "a hidden trade".
By marching through London, our supporters are sending a clear message that we are demanding action to be taken to end live exports for good."
Click video. Live animal exports have restarted at Dover despite previous attempts by the port to ban the trade. Report from Derek Johnson.
The National Farmers Union (NFU) has released a statement welcoming the resumption of live animal transport through the port of Dover today.
Following berthing trials of the MV Jolene, The Dover Harbour Board yesterday gave operator Barco de Vapor permission to run the service.
The union said the issue of animal transport "must be put into perspective. There is demand from Europe for both UK breeding livestock and animals destined for the food chain".
This is a perfectly legal, legitimate and valuable trade for English farmers. The MV Jolene will be sailing from Dover to Calais for a significantly shorter journey time, when compared with other ports, and this is a bonus for animal welfare.
Ideally we as an industry would like the ability to use the regular freight services from Dover which would mean a journey time of just an hour and a half and more frequent sailing.
Regulations are in place at a UK and EU level to ensure that all animal transport, including that going overseas, is not detrimental to animal health.
It is not in the commercial interests of anyone in the livestock trade to transport animals in a way that results in sick, injured or stressed animals.
Protesters turned out as live animal exports resumed at the Port of Dover amid renewed calls for an end to the controversial trade.Read the full story ›