HC Deb 22 February 1968 vol 759 cc181-2W
Dr. John Dunwoody

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many veterinary officers have assisted in controlling the recent foot-and-mouth epidemic; and from which countries they came.

Mr. Peart

Nearly 1.000. Of these, over 370 were my own veterinary staff; just over 500 were veterinary surgeons in private practice, including eight from overseas; 85 were in the service of other Governments; 26 from the Irish Republic, 14 each from Northern Ireland and Australia. 12 each from Canada and the United States and seven from New Zealand.

I am sure that all hon. Members will wish to join me in paying a very warm tribute to each one of these officers for their wholehearted and sustained enthusiasm and sheer hard work in most difficult conditions. In particular, the veterinary surgeons from overseas, by joining in this successful battle side by side with the State Veterinary Service and so many veterinary surgeons from private practice in the British Isles, have shown in a practical way that the fight against animal disease is truly international. I have written to these officers personally but I am glad to have this opportunity to express my thanks in public to them and to the Governments who so readily made their services available. I also wish to thank now all the other veterinary surgeons who have assisted in the battle.