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Home   Ashford   News   Article

RSPCA urged to act after horses die in flooded fields off Romney Marsh Road in Ashford

12 February 2014
by Samantha Williams
Three horses are believed to have died because of flooded fields around Ashford.
 
Concerns have been raised about the wellbeing of animals in the fields off Romney Marsh Road, Norman Road, Ashford Road and off the A2070.
 
Ashford mayor Cllr David Smith said he has reported his worries to animal charity RSCPA seven times, but has heard nothing back.  

Warning: Graphic image below

Concerns have been raised for the welfare of horses on flooded land off Norman Road

Concerns have been raised for the welfare of horses on flooded land off Norman Road

 
It is believed up to three animals have died over the last week because of the harsh conditions of the land they are grazing on, which is under water due to the constant wet weather.
 
A fourth was found dead after being dumped in the entrance to Orlstone Woods, near Shadoxhurst, by a dog walker. 
 
Animal lover Cllr Smith - who has three dogs, three tortoises, snakes and fish - said: "I heard about the concern for the horses last week and wanted to try and do something. It is causing a lot of ill feeling.
 
"We have been down to visit them at the weekend. The fields are completely flooded.
 
"Some of the animals are looking really distressed. They are suffering.
 
"We need to see something being done. We want the horses out of those conditions."
One of the horses on flooded land off Norman road

One of the horses on flooded land off Norman road

The Royds Road resident added: "Two died last week and another has been found dead near Park Farm."
 
Now, Ashford Borough Council have made the decision to move the horses following fears the weather is only going to get worse.
 
A spokeswoman said: "We've decided to take action and move them. We're making phone calls to landowners and stables. The weather is suppose to take a turn for the worse on Friday.
 
"We might need help, as there are up to 17 horses in the fields.
 
"If anyone can help with transportation or offering a suitable place for them to be taken, please email us at media@ashford.gov.uk."
 
The fields have been under water in the last few weeks after the UK endured the wettest January since 1766 in and that this winter has brought the most prolonged spell of severe weather conditions in 250 years.
 
A horse was found dumped in Orlstone Woods

A dead horse found dumped in Orlstone Woods

The RSPCA have said they are in the grip of a horse crisis and are overwhelmed with concerns over equine welfare.
 
Spokeswoman Katya Mira said: "I can confirm the RSPCA has received complaints about horses in the Ashford Road area of Ashford and is taking the issues there very seriously.
 
"We are looking into whether offences have been committed and due to this being an ongoing investigation cannot comment further at this time.
 
"Sadly the RSPCA is overwhelmed with issues concerning equine welfare at the present time. The country is currently in the grip of a horse crisis, with us and other horse welfare charities struggling to cope with the numbers of abandoned, neglected and abused horses.
 
"We are stretched to breaking point with about 125 places at our equine centres but about 1,000 horses in our care."
 
The RSPCA is urging anyone with concerns about the welfare of horses to call the charity in confidence on 0300 1234 999.


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