05 March 2002
Victory for campaigners as woodland slaughterhouse application
Viva! campaigners today celebrated over news that a controversial
planning application for a new slaughterhouse in Blackstone
Gate Wood, West Sussex has been withdrawn.
Horsham District Council state that the applicant decided
not to proceed with the application after learning that the
planning committee were due to recommend refusal at the decision
meeting later this month. The committee were concerned that
the buildings could have been sited on ancient woodland.
Viva! campaigners demonstrated outside the council offices
two weeks ago and called on councillors to turn down the application.
As a vegetarian group, Viva! is opposed to the construction
of any new slaughterhouse. However it was particularly disturbed
by the choice of site, which would have led to the destruction
of trees and wildlife habitat in order that more farmed animals
could be killed.
Other organisations who objected or raised serious doubts
about the proposal included Sussex Wildlife Trust, Friends
of the Earth, English Nature, the Woodland Trust, the Forestry
Commission, Compassion in World Farming, the Environment Agency,
the Council for the Protection of Rural England and many others.
Says Viva!s senior campaigner, Becky Smith, We
are delighted that the council responded to the overwhelming
number of objection letters it received and planned to refuse
this application. It is heartening that local people are still
able to have influence over what happens to their countryside.
Ms Smith continues However, I would ask local people
who opposed this application to think more deeply about what
it is they objected to. These polluting, destructive places
only exist because people choose to eat meat and yet nobody
seems to want animals being killed in their back yard. Anyone
who genuinely cares about animals and the environment should
More information from Becky Smith on 0117 944 1000