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Bulls, Seizure (Right Of Appeal)

Volume 414: debated on Monday 22 October 1945

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asked the Minister of Agriculture whether his attention has been called to the fact that on 9th July, 1945, an official of his Ministry supported by a superintendent of police, seized, without warning, two young bulls from the farm of Mr. C. W. R. Lockyer, Manor Farm, Frampton-on-Severn; under what regulation or Act of Parliament this action was taken; has Mr. Lockyer the right of appeal; and what action does he propose to take to avoid the recurrence of such procedure.

Yes, Sir. This action was taken under Sub-section (7) of Section 6 of the Improvement of Livestock (Licensing of Bulls) Act, 1931, after Mr. Lockyer had twice been convicted and fined for failure to comply with statutory notices to castrate or cause to be slaughtered the two bulls in question because of their unsuitability for service. The bulls were transferred to the Ministry of Food for slaughter, and their value, less expenses, has since been paid to Mr. Lockyer. Mr. Lockyer failed to exercise his right of appeal within the appropriate period against the refusal of a licence to use these bulls for service. I see no reason to propose any variation in a procedure which has been duly authorised by Parliament.

Without going into the question of guilt or anything else in this particular case, may I ask if it is the policy of the Ministry of Agriculture to allow a right of appeal to an independent tribunal in all cases of taking away property on a farm, or the farm itself?

I think I have already made it clear to the hon. Member that there was a right of appeal in this case, but that Mr. Lockyer failed to exercise his privilege.

Is the Minister aware that this case is on the border of my constituency and that I am quite able to deal with it?