Dorset farmer frustrated over TB delays

One of Dorset's leading farmers says he's increasingly frustrated with the Government's decision not to extend badger culling trials.

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Brian May apologises for badger 'genocide' remark

The rock star and wildlife campaigner Brian May has apologised for using the term 'genocide' to describe the badger cull pilots taking place in the West of England.

Queen guitarist Brian May addresses members of a Wounded Badger Patrol in Gloucestershire
Queen guitarist Brian May addresses members of a Wounded Badger Patrol in Gloucestershire Credit: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

The Queen musician's alleged remarks were made during a visit to Gloucestershire last week and caused a backlash among members of the Jewish community.

Writing on his website, May said he could not remember using the phrase "genocide in the countryside," but that he had given some 20 interviews and may have lost track.

May said he had no intention to "slight the Jewish community" but maintained it was "not a very big flight of fancy" to refer to the killing of animals in this way.

"The word I prefer to use about the badger cull is 'massacre' ... because really the word 'cull' is enormously euphemistic," he added.

Read: May leads anti-badger cull walk

West dairy farmer claims badger cull is 'failing'

Derek Mead. Credit: ITV News West Country

A dairy farmer and businessman from Weston-super-Mare has claimed the badger cull in Somerset will not succeed due to a failure to shoot enough of the animals.

North Somerset Cllr Derek Mead said only a handful of badgers are being shot daily in the Exmoor culling zone.

He said after two weeks of shooting the total number of badgers killed was 'well below 100', a tiny proportion of the 2,000 needed to be shot if the six-week pilot is to be successful.

He has called for badgers to be gassed instead of shot.

The culls aim to assess if culling can be done effectively, safely and humanely, with plans to roll out the scheme more widely in areas that are hotspots for TB in cattle.

Farmers and the Government insist culling of badgers, which can spread TB to cattle, is needed to stop spiralling rates of the disease in herds.

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West Country (E)

More details on badger cull arrests in Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire Police said four people were arrested in Redmarley in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

  • A 46-year-old woman from Cheltenham
  • A 34-year-old woman from Gloucester
  • A 46-year-old woman from Evesham
  • A 23-year-old man from Mansfield in Nottinghamshire

All four were arrested on suspicion of theft and aggravated trespass.

The 34-year-old woman was also arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon.

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West Country (E)

Anti-badger cull march gets under way in Taunton

Opponents gathered at Goodland Gardens. Credit: ITV News West Country
People were asked to wear black and white, with a hint of red. Credit: ITV News West Country
An online petition started by rocker Brian May opposing the cull now has 300,000 signatures. Credit: ITV News West Country
The march will end in Vivary Park Credit: ITV News West Country

An anti badger cull march has got underway in Taunton. Opponents gathered at Goodland Gardens and will march in opposition to the pilot culling that is currently underway in West Somerset and parts of Gloucestershire.

Around 5,000 of the animals are expected to be killed in controlled shootings over six weeks in Somerset and Gloucestershire.

West Country (E)

Anti-cull marchers told to wear black, white & red

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Don't forget the March in Taunton, 11am Goodland Gardens...walking to Vivary Park, bring a picnic! Wear black n white with a hint of red!

Opponents to the controversial badger cull in parts of Somerset and Gloucestershire will march through Taunton town centre today. The event is planned as a peaceful protest, and will begin at Goodland Gardens just after 11am, finishing in Vivary Park.

West Country (E)

Brian May joins anti-badger cull night walkers

Queen guitarist Brian May last night joined dozens of anti-badger cull protesters on a night walk through one of the pilot areas.

The rocker got a warm round of applause when he met around 50 people taking part in one of the nightly Wounded Badger Patrols in Eldersfield, near Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire.

Brian May said the visit to the county was timed to give a morale boost to those out on nightly badger patrols. Credit: Tim Ireland/PA Wire
May, who is a member of the Team Badger campaign, joined the nightly cause to applause. Credit: Tim Ireland/PA Wire
An online petition May started against the pilots is the most supported on the official Government website, with 300,000 signatures. Credit: Tim Ireland/PA Wire

Watch: Brian May says badger cull is 'a disaster all round'

Anti cull march in Taunton today

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#badgercull Hope you will be able to join the march in Taunton tomorrow, details under events on http://t.co/9gMiky9dcb

Opponents to the controversial badger cull in parts of Somerset and Gloucestershire will march through Taunton town centre today. The event is planned as a peaceful protest, and will begin at Goodland Gardens just after 11am, finishing in Vivary Park.

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