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May I add my grateful thanks to the courageous members of the House of Lords who have halted the Animal Death Bill - for the time being at least. ......

On a slightly different point, DEFRA constantly bombard farmers with literature through the post. On occasions they even ask our opinion on matters. The last time we were asked to vote on two options for the extension of Nitrate sensitive areas. Now I don't want to enter into the ramifications of that particular subject - but the point is that DEFRA have a facility of canvassing farmers' opinions. Now, in this wonderful democratic self determining society we have today, why can't the farmers vote for the way they wish FMD to be dealt with? Forget the NFU - just one person, one vote (preferably not counted by DEFRA, of course!). The Government blithers much about "stakeholders". As far as I am concerned, there is only one stakeholder in my animals - me!

Incidently, I may be thoroughly cynical, but don't be too surprised if we get some more "scares" just to spite us all now Mr Morley can't have his new "toy".

However, for the moment, let us hope the sun keeps shining!