News item

"Horrific cruelty" farmer gets eight year pig and cow ban

 A Nottinghamshire farmer and animal dealer jailed last month for "horrific" cruelty, has been banned from keeping pigs and cows for eight years at a hearing today (29 February).
Keith James Littlewood (47) of White Haven Farm, Goosedale Lane, Bestwood, Nottingham was sent to prison for a year last month after admitting four breaches of Animal By-Product Regulations and eight breaches of the Animal Welfare Act.
Investigating Officers from Nottinghamshire County Council Trading Standards had described scenes of cruelty and neglect to the animals at Littlewood's farm as "the most horrific they have ever dealt with".
Today's ruling at Nottingham Crown Court disqualifies Littlewood from keeping, transporting or dealing in pigs and bovines until 2020. He will be allowed to continue to keep other animals, including poultry, donkeys and dogs.
Trading Standards Officers made an unannounced visit to White Haven Farm in March 2011 after they were contacted by a member of the public who was concerned about the welfare of animals. They found:
• Rotting carcases of scores of dead pigs, cows, poultry and a donkey in varying states of decay
• Starving animals with no access to food or water, some feeding on the carcases of dead animals
• A dog locked on a partakabin with no food and surrounded by faeces
• Evidence of attempts to incinerate animal carcases
• Animals left to roam the site in hazardous conditions.
Fortunately, no disease was detected as spreading as a result of the exposure of the animal by-products to other animals.
Four of the living animals - one cow and three pigs - were in such bad condition they had to be destroyed. Others have subsequently been put to sleep and others rehomed.
Nicola Schofield, Trading Standards Manager at Nottinghamshire County Council said, "The conditions animals were being kept in at White Haven Farm were the most horrific Trading Standards Officers have ever dealt with.
"When Mr Littlewood is released from prison we will be carrying out regular unannounced inspections of the farm to ensure he is adhering to the terms of the ban and meeting requirements for the animals he is allowed to keep.
"We will also be circulating information about the restrictions on Mr Littlewood to Trading Standards services at other authorities and livestock markets."
Councillor Mick Murphy, Cabinet Member for Community Safety at Nottinghamshire County Council added, "The severity of the punishments in this case should send out a clear message that anyone who fails to properly care for or manage livestock will suffer the consequences - both through severe restrictions on their livelihood and through loss of their liberty.
"The condition in which Mr Littlewood kept his animals was not only appalling and cruel, it presented a serious risk to public health and we should be relieved that the consequences were not even worse."
Anyone with concerns about the welfare of livestock or farm animals in Nottinghamshire call Nottinghamshire County Council on 08449 80 80 80.
- Ends -
Notes to Editor
Nottinghamshire County Council Trading Standards:
Trading Standards Officers from Nottinghamshire County Council are responsible for safeguarding the health and welfare of farm animals and livestock in the county. They:
• monitor animal movements by license
• check animal records are kept up-to-date on farms
• monitor the welfare standards of animals kept on farms
• monitor the welfare standards of animals in transit or exposed for sale in livestock markets
Images and video: Images and video footage of the scenes at White Haven Farm, used in evidence for the original Court case, are available on request. Many of the images are of a graphic nature.
Use of images and video:
• All video and photographs used must be credited to Nottinghamshire County Council.
• No pictures showing the faces of Nottinghamshire County Council Trading Standards Officers must be shown.
For further information on this press release contact Rob Shirley, Senior Media Officer at Nottinghamshire County Council on 0115 977 2802 or email