Wales snow: Farmers given another week to bury animals

Farmer Gareth Wyn Jones rescuing a pregnant ewe in the recent snow in Conwy The deadline due to end at midnight on Tuesday has been extended until 23 April

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Farmers in Wales have been given another week to bury dead livestock lost in recent snow as £500,000 is made available to agriculture charities.

It is the third time the Welsh government has relaxed EU rules which require farmers to pay others to remove carcasses from their land.

The deadline, which was due to end at midnight on Tuesday, has been extended until 23 April in the worst-hit areas.

Farmers reported losing hundreds of lambs in deep snow in March.

As well as extending the time for farmers to bury their livestock, Minister for Natural Resources and Food Alun Davies said he had also made money available to charities working with the farming industry.

"Following discussions yesterday, I intend to make a total of £500,000 available to those charities to help them with their work in the short term," Mr Davies said.

"This aid will be targeted at those areas which have suffered the worst of the severe weather.

Start Quote

This aid will be targeted at those areas which have suffered the worst of the severe weather”

End Quote Alun Davies Minister for Natural Resources and Food

"I will be offering £100,000 to the FCN [Farming Community Network] and £150,000 to RABI [Royal Agricultural Benevolent Institution] to assist them with their pastoral and advice-related work, and direct support to the most hard-pressed families.

"Given the general shortage and increased costs of animal feed across most of the country as a consequence of the poor weather, and in order to help address animal welfare and financial difficulties facing, I will also making £250,000 available to the Addington Trust to help them provide short-term support to those families in Wales who are least able to meet these costs."

The president of the National Farmers' Union in Wales Ed Bailey urged farmers to contact one of the charities benefiting from the money.

'Struggling financially'

"A lot of farmers don't yet know the full economic implications the adverse weather conditions have had on their business," he said.

"But we would encourage all Welsh farmers who are currently struggling financially and emotionally to contact one of these charitable organisations for help."

Last week Mr Davies said advice from veterinary experts and weather forecasts from the Met Office made it clear that the derogation allowing on-farm burial was still necessary.

Mr Davies said at the time that he would extend the relaxation of the rules to northern areas of Ceredigion.

Farms in parts of Conwy, Denbighshire, Wrexham, Gwynedd, Flintshire and Powys had already been allowed to bury their own sheep, lambs and calves.

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