Rescue operation underway in Surrey

chaps89

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https://www.eagleradio.co.uk/news/local-news/2778113/breaking-police-raid-at-farm-in-ripley/

Drove past this morning and clocked a few police and rspca cars. Just driven past again, several massive horseboxes and trailers.
The horses have been their years and always in a state so I'm surprised it's not happened sooner. By all accounts there's also dogs and other animals in the barn/s that won't have been visible from the road.
I'm glad somethings happening but it's a massive job, there must have been over 50 horses there.
 
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Been over 100 there in the summers. They get collected up and then the majority are loaded to go for meat (non UK slaughter) on regular basis.
The breeding dogs in the barns have always been cause of concern too.
Fields are dreadful, as is the barns.
Not the 1st time the agencies have been in but it's a hot potato as they need to have police escort to get in there.
 

Archangel

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I used to drive past that hell hole on the way to my horses every day. Sometimes there must have been 100 horses our there. Occasionally they had rugs on and it bothered me that someone had given their horse away free to a good home and they ended up there.

Some days there would be loads of horses in the field and then the next day all gone. Where did they go? Then suddenly another load arrived.

So glad something has finally been done about it. I know so many people raised concerns with RSPCA and Parish Council.
 

chaps89

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Having had a friend who works in this field, I absolutely get why they wouldn't be doing anything without police presence!

I think they used to have more fields out the back, on the right hand side as you drive out of the village towards Horsley, but they seem to have lost or given up that grazing maybe 2 years ago?

Given the conditions (that field was so horrendous), the horses never seemed to look that bad (what you could tell from the road anyway) - which I guess if they were coming and going/off to slaughter they probably wouldn't be. Either way it was a grim set up.

A fellow livery said she's been reporting it for years - I wonder if it will ever come out why something has happened now. The cost involved must be quite significant as well as the sheer amount of time and effort.
 

meleeka

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The suffering of the animals must have been immense for the authorities to finally take action. Animal welfare seems to be in the dark ages in this country.
As is usually the case, something should have been done years ago, but wasn’t and now it’s a massive operation. It sounds as if there was good cause to remove before, so I’m guessing there’s another reason they’ve acted now and it’s to do with the police rather than an equine charity.
 

meleeka

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chaps, the landowner also has at least another 4 yards/fields of holding. The authorities are aware, they are spread out from Leatherhead to Alton. Proof of ownership is also difficult as he has various family members involved.
Oh I’ve heard of the ones at Alton. I think something happened there a while back. Will try and find it.
 

millikins

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Glad something's being done. To me it just doesn't make sense, surely it isn't economically viable to send half starved 13 hh cobs for meat? And I know gypsies see horse ownership as a status symbol but again, scrubby small ones?
It was mentioned when Spindles Farm happened that they were being used as a cover for drug smuggling, that makes more sense. My small "rescue" (I paid for him but wasn't going to leave him where he was) has a BHS passport but the first language on it is French, as were the the other four the seller gave me to pick mine out from as he couldn't read. Why would you bother to import a 10.2hh nondescript pony unless it was cover for another more lucrative deal?
 
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millikins, the outdoor ones are all generally in good shape, a few poor looking yearlings and other youngsters among them, despite a large amount of the land knee deep in mud.. Estimates are now more than 60 dogs, excess of 120 equines, plus other livestock been already lifted, some too sick to move (latter comment not confirmed by officials).
Fire brigade on site assisting with lighting so they can carry on with cataloging into the night.
Hope tomorrow brings an update, and peace to the stock which were moved.
 

popsdosh

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Been over 100 there in the summers. They get collected up and then the majority are loaded to go for meat (non UK slaughter) on regular basis.
The breeding dogs in the barns have always been cause of concern too.
Fields are dreadful, as is the barns.
Not the 1st time the agencies have been in but it's a hot potato as they need to have police escort to get in there.
The police have to be there as its the only way the RSPCA can legally enter private property and remove animals without the owners consent. The RSPCA or indeed any other agency only have the same powers that you or I have.
 
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The police have to be there as its the only way the RSPCA can legally enter private property and remove animals without the owners consent. The RSPCA or indeed any other agency only have the same powers that you or I have.
I'm v aware of that Pops. A vet and local council animal welfare officer can insist on access.
This particular site has a bit of a name, more than most, hence a heavy police presence to start with, for reasons best unpublished.
 

Archangel

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Just seen 204 animals were removed - included are 123 horses, 8 donkeys and 59 dogs.

Whilst it is brilliant something has finally been done, this place has been like this for at least 10 years ago so it has taken 10 years for something to be done despite so many people reporting the problem. This is not a hidden field it is on a busy road on the edge of the village for all to see.

What bothered me the most was that there could be so many horses in the fields one day, then next morning they were all gone. All of them. Where the hell did they go.
 
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ester

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The rspca donseem to be particularly busy recently with big jobs, we had 104 dogs removed by them locally a few weeks back.
 
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Why did he have that many animals? Was he a hoarder?
Backyard dog breeder, buyer of any equine but most went for meat once there were enough - drive past in excess of 100 for days, then all had gone. Within days more started arriving again. Fields full of broken implements, plastic, barbed wire on ground in places, thick bog over 5 or 6 acres but about 70 equines on that side of 'farm' in about 25 to 30 acres in total.
So much rubbish been posted on local faceache groups tho!
 
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JunoJones

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The charities do fantastic work with rehabilitating horses like these. Whenever anyone can take in a horse from a charity, it frees up space for them to undertake more operations. I saw a number of horses that had come from this event. They were all looking well and turning into lovely animals with kind natures. Big round of applause to the all authorities involved. 👏👏👏👏👏👏👏
 

millikins

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Thank you for the update TFF. Hurst still has a current ad on DD for carts.
I still don't understand how they are sold for meat. Where? There's no meat on them, and being transported abroad surely requires paperwork. I am genuinely at a loss as to what all the scrubby coloured ponies are for and where they go.
 
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Thank you for the update TFF. Hurst still has a current ad on DD for carts.
I still don't understand how they are sold for meat. Where? There's no meat on them, and being transported abroad surely requires paperwork. I am genuinely at a loss as to what all the scrubby coloured ponies are for and where they go.
They were, prior to 2019. Paperwork can be avoided in any sphere......
There are a number across the UK that hoard worthless indiscriminately bred scrubby ponies like this, sadly.

I think you'll find any current adverts are by his family, as son is at the site along with other family.
Oh, and the huge heaps are still there despite council creating enforcement order, more scrubs still out in the fields...... sigh.....
 

millikins

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It just doesn't make financial sense to me. What is the carcass of a skinny 13hh pony worth? Since there are fields of these ponies all over the country why has nobody seen them in transit? Even if the odd lorry load slipped through without proper papers there must be literally dozens of these lorries and EU slaughterhouses big enough to deal with these numbers are surely subject to regulation. My favoured speculation that they are used to cover drug smuggling would at least make it financially feasible and also explain why they don't bother to feed them. I believe the lorry at the Ripley site was burnt out 24 hours after the raid which is suspicious.
 
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