A FARM near Uttoxeter is now back to square one after a test revealed its cattle has been hit by bovine Tuberculosis (bTB) for the second time.
Louis and Gillian Bothwell’s Lower Lynbrook Farm, in Newchurch, Hoar Cross, has already seen its entire herd wiped out in March by the deadly disease bought on by badgers and now faces a second slaughter adding to their financial burden.
The new comes as the controversial badger culling is due to get under way in Gloucestershire and Somerset.
After disinfecting and badger-proofing the farm, inspectors from the animal health department gave the Bothwells a licence to buy cows from TB-free farms.
In May, the couple had to travel to Germany to buy 130 cows over three trips and they have to have two clear tests over four months to be able to trade cows again.
Mrs Bothwell said: “We had a clear test in May which was fantastic and thought we had overcome it all but then we had the second test in July and we went down with another six cows which was heartbreaking so we are back to square one.
“We are still in limbo in that we cannot trade cows so we have a large number of cows still here but we do have milk.
“We are now housing cows indoors all the time because the risk is too high but at least we know they are safe.”
The next test will be next month but the problems have left the farm with a massive financial burden.
Mrs Bothwell said that while the badger population should be controlled, she did not believe in ‘free shooting’ and said each farm should be investigated on a ‘farm by farm basis’.
She added: “No farms want to see badgers wiped out, it is about controlling wildlife humanely.”