The two farmers behind the failed Nocton super dairy bid have bought a dairy farm in Hungary.

Devon farmer and cheesemaker Peter Willes and Lancashire milk producer David Barnes have invested in a 1,000-cow dairy farm on 1,740ha of rented land about 100 miles from Budapest.

Mr Barnes declined to talk in detail about the venture, but would only say: “We have bought a business in Hungary that is milking cows. It’s only a small project.”

Plans to establish Nocton Dairies, an 8,100-cow farm in Nocton, Lincolnshire, were withdrawn in 2011 after the Environment Agency raised an official objection against the project.

The government agency opposed plans for Europe’s largest super dairy amid concerns that waste could leak into the ground and pollute an aquifer beneath the site that supplies drinking water.

Animal rights groups, including Compassion in World Farming (CIWF), also strongly objected to the project on environmental and animal welfare grounds.

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