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Council sued for naimal export ban

[ February 26, 2013   //   ]

Livestock exporters are suing Thanet District Council in the High Court for lost earnings during a now rescinded ban on using the port of Ramsgate last year. The council imposed the temporary ban following an incident in September 2012 in which more than 40 lame sheep had to be put down. But this was lifted in November following a High Court ruling.

The identities of the exporters involved are not being disclosed.

Ramsgate is now the only port on the UK mainland that permits export of live cattle, although even this is in the teeth of opposition from Thanet Council which has sought to ban the trade. All major ferry operators have themselves long refused to carry live animals (and Eurotunnel has never accepted live animals since its opening) so the sole link to the Continent is the 300dwt, 1988-built Joline, a converted Russian river ferry. Many of the Joline’s sailings have had to be cancelled and its speed of only 8 knots means that voyage times are much longer than on the scheduled services.

The Joline attracts regular protests from animal rights activists, who regularly try to ambush trucks heading for the port.

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