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Fly grazing in Houghton Green
7:00am Monday 9th September 2013 in News
HORSES have returned to a farmer’s field next to Houghton Green pool in another apparent fly-grazing act.
Four horses have been spotted on the field where there is ragwort.
Previously there were 12 horses and foals on the same site.
Clr Geoff Settle (LAB - Poulton North) said: “We are very concerned for the welfare of these fly-grazing horses. Four of the original 12 have been dumped for a second time by a man claiming to be their owner in a field of ragwort without access to fresh water.
“The horses’ manes are matted and their hooves are in poor condition.”
But mystery surrounds who actually owns the horses because Clr Settle said the man who left the horses there does not match the name cited in a hearing at Warrington County Court over the custody of the horses in a hearing last month.
The horses have been causing problems for drivers on occasions when they break free from the fields too.
Clr Settle added: “The horses had been grazing peacefully for several months at the site until for some reason the field gate was left open.
“I was driving towards Winwick when the whole herd came over the brow of the Delph Lane motorway bridge in between a couple of very worried motorists.
“They did a lap of Houghton Green before ending up grazing on the football fields behind the Mill House Pub.
“It took a number of horse lovers from Cinnamon Brow two hours on that occasion to round up, rope and led the frightened horses to safety in a pen behind the Plough Pub on Mill Lane. This was their third or fourth escape of the week.”
The horses were taken away the next morning by someone with a blue horse box.
“However two weeks later and four of them are back,” said Clr Settle. “On the newly harvested field next to the site, grazing on the stubble with the gate wide open. It was too heavy for me to close and there were large gaps in the fence so I had to phone to the police again.”
As a new member of the council’s gypsy and traveller liaison committee Clr Settle has asked that issues surrounding fly-grazing are added to the group’s remit.
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