Hillside Animal Sanctuary was founded in 1995 to help and campaign for animals in need' and most importantly, to bring public awareness to the millions of animals suffering every day in the intensive factory farming industry. Although at Hillside we have given sanctuary to 1600
horses, ponies and donkeys, most of our residents have been rescued
To see the RSPCA's response when we report severe animal suffering on their 'monitored' Freedom Food farms, please watch 'Ducks in Despair' (below)
or click here to read our report
WE REPORTED FOOT AND MOUTH FARM TWO MONTHS BEFORE DISEASE WAS DETECTED in 2001 . . .
Burnside Farm at Heddon-on-the Wall was the subject of a Hillside investigation just two months before the first British case of F&M was detected there. We had received information that there were rotting carcasses amongst live pigs, piglets being eaten alive by other pigs, and sickly-looking pigs indicating the possibility of a disease being present. The Waugh brothers, who ran the farm, had previously been evicted from a pig farm by a local council where pictorial evidence also revealed pigs living in absolute squalor. On arrival at Burnside we could see what we now know may have been the contaminated swill which was being fed to the pigs. We reported our concerns to the appropriate authorities expecting them to fully investigate. The farm was inspected 22nd Dec 2000 by Trading Standards and MAFF. At the time these government officials claimed they could find no prosecutable offences and simply 'advised' the Waughs to clean up. However, soon after this farm was confirmed to be the source of the F&M outbreak, Mr Waugh was convicted of several charges, including causing unnecessary suffering to animals.
Hillside's investigation team have video evidence to prove that time and time again all species of farm animals are routinely left to suffer injury, illness and disease without any care or veterinary treatment. Can we really be surprised that such a serious disease was overlooked when finding sick animals in the intensive factory farming industry is so commonplace?
During Christmas, the village where I live, was resounding with the sound of cows bellowing out for their calves. People went about their business seemingly oblivious to the dreadful mental torture those animals were going through. Even Christmas Day churchgoers, in full earshot of the desperate calling, just turned the other cheek. If it had been a human mother who had been so ruthlessly separated from her baby and been in such distress the whole village would have turned out, trying to help.
The cows’ offspring had been deliberately taken away, leaving them suffering the same anguish that any human mother would. I find it hard to believe that people can be so callous to another living creature. The cows that I could only listen to and sympathise with over Christmas were in this state in order to supply humans with beef. Dairy cows suffer the same horrific mental torture when their calves are taken away, and often killed, so that humans can drink the milk intended for their offspring. Wendy Valentine Click to listen
Sir David Attenborough, who has become a patron of the Optimum Population Trust, the leading think tank in the UK concerned with the impact of population growth on the environment, said: “I’ve seen wildlife under mounting human pressure all over the world and it’s not just from human economy or technology - behind every threat is the frightening explosion in human numbers.