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TB Table Value Case Gets NFU Backing

23 April 2009
National Farmers Union

UK - The NFU has announced today it will support Devon dairy farmer David Partridge, the claimant in the NFU-backed TB table values legal challenge, in seeking leave to appeal to the House of Lords following the decision handed down by the Court of Appeal earlier this month.

Last July, the High Court ruled in Mr Partridge's favour, and found that Defra's approach to the valuation of high value animals was unlawful. However, in the judgment handed down on April 1 2009, the Court of Appeal said that there was no discrimination in Defra's approach to the valuation of high value animals.

In the judgment Lord Justice Lawrence Collins said: "I accept the Secretary of State's submission that the true value of any animal once it has tested positive for TB is the salvage value of its carcass." He also said that the true value of Mr Partridge's cattle "was not materially different from any other cattle which had been diagnosed with TB".

The NFU has considered the judgment carefully, and has decided to support Mr Partridge in a petition to the House of Lords, seeking leave to appeal against the Court of Appeal's decision.

NFU Deputy President Meurig Raymond said: "We were extremely disappointed with the Court of Appeal's decision. The NFU has always argued that the way Defra implemented table values was grossly unfair to producers of high value, high quality animals which are slaughtered for TB control purposes.

"This is an important case, and that is why the NFU and its Legal Assistance Scheme will be backing Mr Partridge as he seeks to take the case to the House of Lords."

The case has been fully backed by the NFU and its Legal Assistance Scheme and the application action is also being supported by the Devon legal fund which represents more than 3,000 farmers in Devon. The solicitors instructed by the claimant are Clarke Wilmott, one of the NFU's panel firms. Hugh Mercer QC has advised on the case, along with Jeremy Brier.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on Bovine Tuberculosis by clicking here.
- Alternatively, read our recent report - A Blueprint for Eradicating Bovine TB in England - by clicking here.

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