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.
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.