Monday, 21 March 2011

Slaughtering of Dartmoor Hill Ponies features on BBC Radio 4 Open Country

On Saturday 19th March 2011, BBC radio 4's Open Country programme focussed on the current plight of the ponies on Dartmoor.  It includes the presenter, Helen Mark, witnessing a pony slaughter in progress. 

The feature includes interviews with Andrew Goatman (slaughterman), Dartmoor National Park, South West Equine Protection, the Dartmoor Hill Pony Association, the Dartmoor Pony Heritage Trust, and breeder John French (who breeds traditional Dartmoor ponies).  As well as the culling itself, the interviewees discuss the overbreeding of ponies on the moor, the idea of ponies being a "by-product" of conservation grazing and being used for zoo meat, the previous export of Dartmoor to Italy/Spain for their skins and meat, and ultimately what the future will be for the ponies on Dartmoor when so many are being killed. 

You can listen to the programme here: