Labour has criticised the Government for responding slowly to the ash tree crisis, after it emerged in a written answer ministers had been told about the presence of ash dieback in the UK in April.
– Shadow environment secretary Mary Creagh
Ministers were told about the presence of ash dieback in the country on April 3 yet waited till October 29 to ban ash imports.
This seven-month delay is a tragic example of the appalling incompetence and inertia which is a hallmark of this Government.
Scientists tell us the disease loves wet conditions and spreads from June to October but Ministers failed to get a ban in place over the summer months.
We have had the wettest summer on record and I fear, have lost a year in our fight against this terrible disease.