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31/08/2009

Foggins allotment holder told to remove cockerels


ALLOTMENT holders are in a flap after being told to remove their cockerels - because they cock-a-doodle-doo too loud

Stockton Council says it has received complaints from residents about the “increased noise” this summer from cockerels on the Foggins allotments, to the rear of Thornaby Road, Thornaby.

The authority says keeping the birds is against allotment rules and has now written to owners telling them to remove them.

But pensioner John Featherstone is spitting feathers at the thought of having to evict his beloved cockerel Charlie.

The 70-year-old told the Gazette: “I don’t see what the problem is.

“We heard one neighbour complained about the cockerels waking her in the morning. I live up the road and I love to hear them.

“I have three bantam chickens and it’s much more natural to keep a cockerel with chickens. Without Charlie I won’t get any chicks. He’s just had three.”

John, a retired JCB driver who has seven grandchildren, said the allotment had been in his family for more than 50 years.

“I took it over from my father Bill when he died. He loved keeping bantams, that’s why I’m keeping up the tradition.

“There must be only four or five cockerels at most in the allotments. Another fellow treats his like a pet.

“I don’t know what I’d do if I had to get rid of Charlie. I don’t know where he would go. He’s not doing anyone any harm.”

A spokesperson for Stockton Council said: “All allotment holders are made aware of the fact it is not permitted to keep cockerels and this is part of the agreement they sign before taking on a plot.

“Following complaints by nearby residents about the cockerels, officers have spoken with allotment holders.

“Animal welfare officers will offer any advice and support to them and can always help with the rehoming of a cockerel if that is requested.”


Source: http://www.gazettelive.co.uk/news/teesside-news/2009/08/31/foggins-allotment-holder-told-to-remove-cockerels-84229-24562093/2/

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