Anti-badger cull campaigners, led by Brian May’s Save Me organisation are today celebrating a major victory as the Government today announced an immediate halt to the badger cull taking place under an extension license in Gloucester.
Under the license, granted by Natural England in October, the cull was due to continue until 18 December.
May’s Save Me organisation had earlier in the week filed an ‘extremely urgent’ High Court Judicial Review Claim calling for an immediate end to the cull claiming the decision by Natural England to grant an eight week extension in Gloucestershire was ‘unreasonable’ and decided against the advice of its own scientific advisor.
But days later High Court Judge Mr Justice Ockleton refused the claim saying the application did not appear to contain any grounds to justify ‘urgent consideration’.
In return, Save Me vowed to continue its legal opposition to the continuing cull by looking at renewing the application and answers concerns in relation to its timing.
Today both the Government and the NFU appear to have conceded.
As a result the Gloucester cull will be ended three weeks ahead of its due date.
Save Me’s founder, Brian May, who has tirelessly led opposition to the cull says:
“Now that the failure of this whole shameful badger cull shambles can be seen so clearly seen, in spite of many moves of the goalposts, it must be time to abandon the concept, and get on with the only strategy which can ultimately succeed in eradication of bovine TB - vaccination of badgers and other wildlife, and prioritisation of work to license the vaccine for cattle. The whole country will get behind this: David Cameron only needs to press the button.”
“It has been a long and emotional slog to finally get a halt to the extension. The extension should never have been allowed. Today we mourn the badger lives lost and give thanks for those still with us. We pay tribute to everyone involved in the cull on every level not least the dedication of those in the zones . We thank those good men who helped from within and remained true to their conscience.
“The extension is over and we have won a battle due to the total incompetence those involved, but the roll over is still a real threat .
“We must now ensure that the roll-out does not happen. We have good MP’s in Parliament who come in all colours and who oppose this unscientific and pointless cull. “We are continuing to fight the roll-out and will issue further litigation if it becomes a reality.
“We will continue to raise funds for vaccination programs and Brian May and Anne Brummer will become qualified lay vaccinators to begin with the Save Me woodland in Dorset.”