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Government bows to pressure on forest bill

A trader in the Forest of Dean puts his point across Credit: ITV News

Campaigners win the Forest of Dean appear to have won a political victory.

Several hundred people protested against legislation which they say could have led to parts of the forest being sold to developers. But the government has agreed to include protection of forests in the Bill, following pressure from Labour in the House of Lords.

Rather than lose a vote and have to deal with it in the House of Commons where it could be a huge issue for MPs at this time if they get thousands of letters from people up and down the country who are concerned about the forests. Better to deal with it now in the Lords.

– Baroness Royall, Labour leader, House of Lords

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Victory for Forest of Dean campaigners

Protesters who mounted a candlelit vigil in the Forest of Dean tonight appear to have won a political victory.

400 campaigners were at the event, protesting against legislation which they say could have led to parts of the forest being sold to developers.

However following Labour pressure in the House of Lords, the Government has agreed to include protection of forests in the Bill.

Protest over land transfer schemes for Forest of Dean

A woman walks through the Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire. Credit: PA

People in the Forest of Dean will protest this evening against forests being excluded from land transfer schemes. The issue will be debated in the House of Lords today. The protest - organised by 'Hands Off Our Forest' - will involve a procession of people with lanterns around the beauty spot Mallards Pike.

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NFU pleased with badger cull

NFU pleased with badger cull Credit: PA

The six week badger cull in Gloucestershire and Somerset officially ends today. It's the second year that badgers have been shot to try to stop them spreading TB to cattle. Last year the cull was extended because not enough animals had been killed. Protesters say it's been a failure again this year, but the National Farmer's Union disagree.

I think generally we are pretty pleased with how it has gone. In large parts of the area we are seeing very few badgers left on the ground now. Unfortunately there are one or two areas where we haven't been able to be as effective as we'd like to because of the actions of protesters but largely we are very happy with it.

– Andrew Guest, National Farmers' Union

9 out of 10 people against the badger cull, according to new poll

One alternative to culling is badger vaccination

Results from a poll on the recently trialled badger cull suggests that 9 out of 10 people in the UK are against the practice.

The trial cull in Gloucestershire and Somerset officially ended today. Of the 2000 polled, only 3 in 4 were aware of the cull. They were then given information about the UK trial, and the Welsh government’s success in cutting bovine TB through vaccination rather than culling.

The final poll then showed that 89% said that they wanted the government to stop culling badgers, and instead to follow the Welsh example.

The poll was carried out by ComRes, and was commissioned by Care for the Wild and the Badger Trust.

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