HC Deb 14 March 1924 vol 170 cc2735-6W

asked the Minister of Agriculture why difficulties are being placed in the way of Devon store cattle being sent out of the county to other parts of the country where they are required, the said county of Devon being free from foot-and-mouth disease, while at the same time it is permitted for cattle to be imported into and moved about the country from Ireland?


No restrictions have been placed by the Ministry upon the movement of cattle from Devonshire to other parts of Great Britain except that a licence is required from the local authority of the receiving district if movement into a foot-and-mouth disease-infected area is concerned. The restrictions to which the hon. Member apparently alludes are those which have been imposed by local authorities of other counties upon the movement of cattle into their districts in the exercise of their powers under the Foot-and-Mouth Disease Order to prohibit or regulate the movement of animals from other counties for the purpose of preventing the introduction or spread of foot-and-mouth disease. Local authorities also have power to prohibit the movement of Irish animals into their districts, and have in a large number of counties exercised such powers. There is, therefore, no distinction, so far as these local regulations are concerned, between cattle from Devonshire and cattle from Ireland. It is the fact that Devonshire has been free from foot-and-mouth disease for some months, but in view of the serious position of this country during the past few months as regards foot-and-mouth disease, the Ministry has not considered it expedient to interfere with the exercise by local authorities of their powers to make regulations affecting movement of stock into their district as a protection against the introduction of disease from without.