30 November 2001

Memo may bring compensation

A LEAKED memo may open up the way for farmers involved in the 3km cull in Cumbria to claim more compensation, say campaigners.

The memo, to junior DEFRA minister Elliot Morley and dated Nov 6, indicates that DEFRA has been advised not to contest a case with one farmer over his valuation. It was obtained by campaign group Heart of England.

The note explains that the farmer was told that he had no right to appeal against the valuation of his stock because the cull applied to his animals was voluntary.

But this was incorrect and the farmer should have been given 14 days to challenge it. The memo says that other farmers may argue that they too were advised that they could not challenge the figures given and may now notify DEFRA they wish to dispute them.

A DEFRA spokeswoman said: "We are considering this and will make a response in due course." &#42