HC Deb 15 July 1912 vol 41 cc6-8

asked the President of the Board of Agriculture whether his attention has been called to the hardship and pecuniary loss entailed upon exporters of hay in Ireland by the order prohibiting the export of hay to Great Britain; and whether, having regard to the fact that foot-and-mouth disease has not appeared anywhere in Ireland except Swords, he will endeavour to get the embargo removed so far as it affects the northern districts of Ireland and the ports of Belfast, Coleraine, and Londonderry?


Perhaps the hon. Member will allow me to refer him to the full statement which I made on this subject on Thursday last in reply to the hon. Member for North-East Cork. I am aware of, and much regret, the loss occasioned by the Order to which the hon. Member refers, but under existing circumstances I do not see my way to modify it in the manner suggested. I may add that it has always been the practice of the Irish Department to adopt a similar measure of precaution whenever foot-and-mouth disease has made its appearance in Great Britain.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the hay exported from the northern ports is grown in a district which is entirely free from the least suspicion, and having regard to that fact that this hay has been prepared for export, whether he will allow it to be exported.


I cannot agree to that; but when foot-and-mouth disease broke out in this country, even although it broke out in Somerset county, hay from Northumberland was not allowed into Ireland.


asked whether there have been any further outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease; whether any of these are outside the previously scheduled areas; and whether the cause of the outbreaks in Cumberland or Surrey has been traced to any feeding stuffs or other vehicle of mediate contagion found on the infected premises?


I much regret to say that, early yesterday morning, suspected foot-and-mouth disease was reported from premises near Market Harborough, in Leicestershire. The Board's assistant veterinary officer at once proceeded to the premises, and found that the disease existed, fourteen animals out of sixteen being already affected. An Order was at once issued stopping the holding of markets and the movement of animals in the area surrounding the infected place. The inspectors of the Board are on the spot, and steps have been taken with a view to discover the existence of disease elsewhere in the locality and to prevent it from spreading. Two outbreaks of the disease have also occurred at Saddle-worth, within the Lancashire scheduled area. The total number of outbreaks is now forty-six. The reply to the last part of the question is in the negative.


Do I understand from that answer that the new Order will add both Leicestershire and Northamptonshire to the infected counties?


It will add a portion of Northamptonshire and almost the whole of Leicestershire.

Colonel YATE

The Market Harborough Division of Leicestershire, or the whole?


The area within a radius of fifteen miles of the infected place will be scheduled, quite irrespective of the artificial county boundaries.