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Crowing cockerels cost Haverfordwest smallholders £800

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: April 23, 2014

By Ruth Dawson / ruth.dawson@swwmedia.co.uk / @Ruth_Dawson

A Haverfordwest couple have been fined more than £800 after neighbours complained about their daily wake up call.

A Haverfordwest couple have been fined more than £800 after neighbours complained about their daily wake up call.

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Two Haverfordwest smallholders have been fined for allowing their cockerels to crow.

Andrew and Lynn Baker of Wiltax Rose were fined £200 and ordered to pay costs to the tune of £597.79, along with a £20 surcharge, by magistrates on Monday 14 April.

The couple were originally served a Noise Abatement Notice in July 2013 by Pembrokeshire County Council after a neighbour complained of excessive crowing from their cockerels. But the dawn chorus continued despite the Council’s warning, and a pollution control inspector was sent to investigate.

In August last year, Richard Thomas inspected the situation at a house which borders the 10 acre smallholding. On one occasion, the pollution control inspector recorded ‘incessant’ crowing in the neighbouring property’s bedroom: from 7.01am to 8.46am from four cockerels, close to the property border. The inspector also witnessed the birds crowing ten times in one minute on another day.

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The Bakers moved to the Pembrokeshire countryside from Newport 10 years ago, seeking the rural lifestyle. At one point, the couple had owned around 200 animals but downsized about six years ago.

“I thought it was a joke at first," Andrew told the Western Telegraph. "We are on a farm, we are surrounded by farmland. It’s the countryside."

“If we lived five miles up the road in Haverfordwest I could understand it but not round here.”

“I just thought we were good friends,” Linda commented. “We’ve been round there for coffee and BBQs, we’ve never fallen out with them, I don’t know what happened.”

The couple were also ordered to pay £1700 last month for allowing their two dogs to bark continually.

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8 comments

  • BreadJules  |  April 24 2014, 7:40PM

    Of course, there is more to this story than just roosters. It's the same old story that people can't live together in peace and will always find a way of being unpleasant to each other. If I complained about all the dogs here in the area barking for hours on end I'd be a very busy person.

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  • susiqzz  |  April 24 2014, 4:31PM

    Breadjules.....The roosters were probably very vocal from 4am.....but the environmental health guys weren't there to record it then.

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  • Gwyddno  |  April 24 2014, 3:31PM

    BreadJules: On reading the article, I think there's more to it. A visit. A recommendation. A final notice. Court. Not just cockerels crowing but dogs barking incessantly.

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  • BreadJules  |  April 24 2014, 2:20PM

    "Yes, it's the countryside, but a little give and take goes a long way." On both sides. And roosters from 7-9 shouldn't be of any problem to people who have to get ready and off to work around that time of the day, anyway.

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  • susiqzz  |  April 24 2014, 10:43AM

    If you have a 10 acre smallholding you can find an area not "close to the property border" to house your cockerels. We had a similar problem with a neighbour who put hers under our bedroom window so that she couldn't hear them from hers. Fortunately (for us...not the chickens!) the local fox got them and she never replaced them. The council had already warned this couple so they had the opportunity to move the birds nearly a year ago. Yes, it's the countryside, but a little give and take goes a long way.

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  • charioteer17  |  April 23 2014, 5:23PM

    "What are they supposed to,do, gag the birds, or put them down" Have them for dinner...waste not want not.

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  • neathguard  |  April 23 2014, 3:53PM

    What are they supposed to,do, gag the birds, or put them down

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  • BreadJules  |  April 23 2014, 2:35PM

    And I thought intolerant neighbours were a German speciality...poor people. Crowing roosters between 7 and 9 is nothing to complain about. Roosters tend to start at 4 . I had this nostalgic delusion that country living was about roosters and other rural phenoma not vile neighbours plus overzealous councils and inspectors. Well, well that's what a united Europe probably is about. Same problems wherever you go.Pity

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