19 November 2009 ~ "nice to meet Chris Chapman yesterday. Lovely chap, and a very good photographer / film maker"
Warmwell has received an email from someone who "went to the launch of Chris Chapman's film 'Bovine TB - A Way Forward' , today. It was pretty well attended, and by folk from as far away as Ross on Wye and Somerset, as well as south Cornwall."
November 3 2009 ~ " I'm confident that what we have is a non political, educational and informative film which will go a long way to help the public understand the disease and how we might move forward."
The film, Bovine TB - A Way forward, is near completion and, with an added sequence discussing DEFRA's vaccination of badgers policy, is currently running at just over 24 minutes. A workshop on bTB has been organised at Roadford Lake Reservoir Conference Centre in Devon for the morning of Wednesday, 18th November during which the film maker, Chris Chapman, will both speak and show the film. A private initiative to control bovine TB will then be discussed. The normal cost of the workshop is £20.00 but those who have contributed to the workshop and those who have helped sponsor the film may have free entry. More details of the workshop here.
PRESS RELEASE - MARCH 2009
Dartmoor Photographer and Filmmaker, Chris Chapman is currently working on an independent film about the bTB crisis in the Westcountry.
Bovine TB - A Way Forward will highlight the current anomaly whereby vets and farmers, under present legislation, are unable to take control of the crisis. The film will cover as many viewpoints, suggestions and arguments as is possible and will offer a positive way forward for both farmers and the public to understand the interaction between cattle and badgers and the need to identify and accommodate healthy 'green' badgers.
"Unlike FMD, which I documented in 2001, this crisis doesn't affect everyone and isn't as visible to the public eye. And because it involves a protected species we are in a mire of differing opinion on just what to do. The area where I live is a TB hotspot and not far from my house we have a huge old badger sett that we know has very sick animals living within it. It seems utter madness to me that this can be allowed to continue - no decent farmer would let his animals suffer in this way and yet we have legislation in place that prolongs suffering in wildlife. There really is a desperate need for a solution, to be instigated by government, so that farmers can be encouraged, under the supervision of vets and trained wildlife assessors, to take control of their situation".
"In 2005 I began to make films, one documenting the work of the charity 'Farms for City Children' and more recently one highlighting the problem facing hill farmers due to falling incomes with the changeover to single farm payments. 'A Fair Deal for the Hills' produced with my colleague, Kate King, was commissioned by the Dartmoor National Park Authority. It had a great deal of impact and made me realise that a film can be a very powerful lobbying tool. Unlike a book which can be placed on a shelf and ignored, it is much more likely to be watched and digested by the people you are trying to target. I've never been a political animal with my camera, but I do believe in highlighting the issues from the grass roots, especially when the people on the ground offer sensible solutions to a problem."
Bovine TB - A Way Forward is a not for profit film and is being made with the help of sponsorship from business, the farming industry and private individuals. Its target for the complete production will exceed £12000 and to date over £3000 has been raised. If you would like to contribute, and are interested in further details, please contact Chris Chapman direct on 01647 231508 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Chris Chapman's archive spanning over thirty years, including his films and past commissions, can be viewed at www.chrischapmanphotography.com. In 2008 he received The Dartmoor Society Award for: 'for his outstanding documentary photography of people and place'.