An online farmers’ group is backing calls for a ban on sky lanterns, blamed for causing damage to farms, property and livestock.

Yorkshire farmer and #clubhectare founder Jono Dixon said: “I know Morrisons do not stock them, but other major retailers, as well as small independents, are still stocking them.”

Mr Dixon, who farms 231ha on Sunk Island, east of Hull, producing wheat for egg production, said he was backing calls for a ban from the Country Land and Business Association.

“People should talk to retailers who stock them and ask why they are selling them and whether they realise that these lanterns can cause untold damage to farms and property and harm livestock and wildlife.

“There needs to be a ban on lanterns, but in the meantime retailers need to take some responsibility and remove them from their shelves before there is a serious incident and someone’s business and livelihood is ruined.”

Formed in February 2012, the #clubhectare Twitter group encourages people to discuss farming issues and seek advice from other farmers.

CLA East regional director Nicola Currie said: “No-one wants to be seen as a spoilsport, but these flying bonfires are damaging property and crops and harming and killing cattle.

“We want a ban for the sake of farming, wildlife, the environment and property-owners.”

To help in this, the CLA East office is asking those who have experienced problems because of sky lanterns to contact to help collect evidence to take to the government.

Mrs Currie said: “In the meantime, we are asking district councils to add a clause to the entertainment licences they issue prohibiting the use of sky lanterns.”

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