23rd July 2000

Dear Sir,

The appalling figures of some eight million animals, in the majority,
needlessly slaughtered in response to the foot and mouth out break is
sickening. You may challenge that figure, as it is not, as I am fully aware,
in line with the figures issued by MAFF.  My understanding of the MAFF
figures is that they DO NOT take into account all the lambs, calves and
animals slaughtered on contiguous culls, dangerous contacts, and welfare
disposal is treated separately.

Whilst I find this figure beyond comprehension and will never see the need
for such barbaric draconian measure to have been employed - I would like to
call into question the role, or rather the non-role, that the RSPCA has
played in all of this.  Never before have we had such a huge animal welfare
crisis - one in which some humanity was desperately needed.   Never before
has the need arisen for a strong Welfare Organisation that is/was prepared
to commit itself and stand out against the Government in their deplorable
acts. On neither of these points has the RSPCA taken up the mantle and
fought for what its sole cause is 'the PREVENTION of cruelty to animals'
(all animals).

I am truly mystified how an organisation, which has the title of Royal
Society for the Prevention of cruelty to Animals can stand back and see so
many animals killed, and many of these in the most brutal fashion.  Even if
we were to accept that, as a society, you could not have intervened in what
was basically a Government run SLAUGHTER CAMPAIGN - how can you further
justify your lack of commitment/concern in trying to bring cases to Court -
thereby bringing the perpetrators to justice.

One incident that readily springs to mind is Gilwern.  I believe that you
have publicly stated there is NO CASE TO ANSWER, as these are classed as
'exemptional circumstances/times' and as a result it would be almost
impossible to bring a case against the person involved. I would like to know
what exceptional circumstances could there be, that would allow anyone to
run round a field shooting at sheep with a rifle, and then BE vindicated
afterwards.  In what manner did this serve to justify the elimination of
foot and mouth - and all played out for the World to see? You would think,
therefore, would you not, that we would then want to try and change that
impression of a Country gone mad and on a KILLING FRENZY! and that the RSPCA
would be instrumental in trying to bring this about.

Could you therefore please clarify the RSPCA's POSITION in this and why, as
a Society who campaigns and raises money solely on animal welfare issues,
YOU have been conspicuous only by your absence.  I write this from a County
that has seen most of its livestock wiped out.  There are countless horror
stories, all of which echo the same gross mistreatment and cruelty, which is
as unacceptable in the 21st Century as it is in a so-called civilised
Country. Although, quite frankly, how we can carry on calling this Country
of ours that, while still carrying on bashing the brains out of our lambs is
laughable if it were not so terribly sad.

Only yesterday I heard yet again, that the RSPCA had dropped a case, this
time in Penrith, of animals not being killed outright and left to suffer
overnight.  Are you, as a Society, actively seeking to bring any cases to
Court - surely there cannot be any shortage EIGHT MILLION ANIMALS HAVE BEEN

Or has the RSPCA just become another extension of the Labour Government in
so much as being prepared to toe the official party line that these cruel,
sadistic people - HAVE NO CASE TO ANSWER.

The Society's reply on these issues would be greatly appreciated.

Yours faithfully,

Coleen L Taylor.