Daily Archives: February 7, 2017

Devon farmer Peter Garland trapped and killed by tractor with…

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A poorly-maintained brake caused a Devon farmer to be trapped and killed by his own tractor as he cut grass one morning.

Peter Keble Garland was born on June 8, 1941, and worked as a farmer at Rowes Farm near Tavistock, after a chartered accounting career in London.

His daughter Lisa found him trapped under the rear wheel of his tractor in a field near to the farmhouse, and he had died by the time emergency services arrived just after 10am.

He was 75 when he died on October 5, 2016.

Dr Deborah Cook, forensic pathologist, completed Mr Garland’s post-mortem. She said no natural disease was present and gave a cause of death of blunt force trauma to the chest with crush asphyxia.

Lisa Garland wrote a statement for the coroner’s court at South Molton Town Hall on Tuesday, February 7, about what happened.

It read: “On the day my dad died I went for a walk. When I left my dad was getting ready to go out in the field and said he needed to use the blue tractor and make sure to avoid the stones.

“On my way back I saw the tractor had stopped and the open door was flapping in the wind. I could not see Dad. I ran out to him and found him trapped under the left side back wheel.

“I shouted to him but there was no response. I could not see him breathing and I couldn’t move him or do CPR.”

Ms Garland called 999. When the paramedic arrived, Mr Garland was dead, pronounced at around 10:30am.

Geoffrey Chapman, forensic vehicle examiner for Devon and Cornwall Police, said the tractor was not of a serviceable condition and had been poorly maintained.

He said the bad condition of the parking brake was a contributory factor to the incident, as it could have disengaged, causing the tractor to roll forward and trap Mr Garland.

Coroner John Tomalin summarised the evidence and gave his conclusion.

He said: “Mr Garland had gone out to cut grass on his tractor and, for some reason, got out of the vehicle. His daughter found him trapped by the rear wheel and she called 999.

“I accept the medical cause of death from the forensic pathologist. The vehicle examiner found the rear brake was not fully engaged and the mechanism had signs of wear which could cause it to release of its own accord.

“Mr Garland became trapped and this accident caused his death.”

His daughter’s coroner’s court statement contained a tribute to Mr Garland.

Lisa Garland said: “The farm has been in the family since 1984 and was a proper working farm until 2006 when the beef herd was sold.

“My parents were together for 58 years and married for 53. Over the years, they fell in love with Devon especially Tavistock.

“In 1991, my father retired from his London job to work on the farm. It kept him busy and fit and he could not stay still. He was also heavily involved with Tavistock Rugby Club.

“He was hard-working and always gave his all. He said he was very fortunate to be living his dream.”


VIDEO: Vicious brawl between huntsmen and hunt sabs left man with…

This is the shocking moment a vicious brawl erupts between huntsmen and protesters in North Devon – leaving one animal rights activist with a fractured skull.


The horrific footage shows a protester being confronted by a man dressed in hunting gear before two others attack him on the ground, leaving him with blood pouring from his face.

Saboteurs claim they were staging a peaceful protest at a meet of the Cheldon Buckhounds, who were out with their dogs, before they were attacked.

The shocking footage shows the encounter turn violent after an anti-hunt campaigner strayed from the group in secluded woodland in South Molton.

Many others, dressed in balaclavas, masks and camouflage gear – who the protesters claim were hunt supporters – joined the melee.

Protester Ollie Richmond suffered a fractured skull and eye socket trying to protect fellow saboteur Andy Kane, 53, who was allegedly hit with a motorcycle helmet.

The 28-year-old plumber from Devon, said: “It has been a traumatic experience and the police have been terrible.

“They basically dropped the case due to the fact that the guys had a good lawyer and they claimed self-defence.


Ollie Richmond in hospital

“It’s not self defence if you are beating someone up on the floor.

“These people absolutely should be charged. If this happened to anybody else the perpetrators would be prosecuted but the police don’t like hunt saboteurs.

“I ran down and my intention was to stop the fight, so I targeted the one who was punching Andy.

“I shoulder barged him out of the way and he looked furious and about to attack, so I placed myself between Andy on the floor and him.

“He then took me down and someone else jumped on top of me and started punching me on the ground.

“It all happened very fast but I remember being on the ground and looking up and seeing fists pounding down on my face.

“It eventually stopped. At the time I was in shock. I didn’t realise what had happened until I started feeling my skull.”

Mr Richmond suffered a fractured skull and eye socket and was rushed to North Devon District Hospital in Barnstaple by ambulance.

He later underwent surgery to have titanium plates and mesh could be fitted to his skull.

Mr Richmond was left with a scar on the top of his head where it was stapled back together and was off work for three months afterwards recovering.

A video from from an earlier meet appears to show a man punching a female activist in the face.

The saboteurs claim the attackers were connected to the Cheldon Buckhounds.

But the footage shines a light on the frightening battles being regularly fought out between pro-hunt and anti-hunt supporters in Britain.

Devon and Cornwall Police launched an investigation after receiving eight crime reports after the two confrontations, on May 14 and May 30 2016.

None of those involved were prosecuted, however, three hunt supporters received a police caution in relation to their involvement.

It is not known whether any members of the opponents’ group was hurt.

The Cheldon Buckhounds could not be reached for comment today.

Devon and Cornwall Police said: “Video footage was available to investigators in relation to both events from both parties.

“All the allegations were investigated, witnesses were spoken to and suspects were interviewed in connection with their involvement in the offences.

“There were no prosecutions as a result of these allegations. However, three individuals received police cautions in relation to their involvement.

“All the victims are aware of this and the reasons why.”

*The footage, provided by the Devon County Hunt Saboteurs, was not available in its original, unedited format.


There is more to the Westcountry then rolling hills and roaming…

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Many not familiar with the Westcountry, see the South West as a land of milk and honey, roaming sheep, rolling moorland – and not much else.

They are wrong, writes Totnes MP Anne-Marie Morris.

While it is true that we have a substantial agricultural economy and thankful we are for it, we have an increasing number of high tech, manufacturing and other businesses – and some of them are quite sizeable and world leading.

Our aerospace and advanced engineering businesses contribute £1 billion to the economy.

Businesses in the area also have specialisms in advanced electronics/photonics, medical science and wireless and microwave technologies.

Exeter has been identified as a global centre of excellence in weather and environmental-related data analytics.

The first of the UK’s new generation of nuclear reactors is being constructed at Hinckley. Plymouth is a centre of excellence for marine science and technology.

But there is so much more going on under the surface.

We attract entrepreneurs and have a very large number of emerging businesses. Our challenge is realising our potential.

We have a disproportionately large number of small businesses, a weak infrastructure of road, rail, internet and mobile connectivity, and a recruitment problem.

Too many think the South West begins and ends at Bristol and won’t venture further. As a consequence our productivity levels are low – less money generated from each hour worked.

To turn this around we need a different approach.

In January this year the Prime Minister launched a new industrial strategy.

If we are to remain a key player on the world stage we must adapt to new conditions and develop British industry appropriately, providing support in the right sectors and investing in infrastructure and skills.

Making these adaptations will in term drive domestic prosperity.

The Heart of the South West, responsible for driving up productivity in Devon and Somerset will be developing its own plan aligned with the government’s plan. Key issues to be addressed will include:

  • 1.Investing in science, research and innovation. The government plans to invest £4.7 billion by 2020/21 in research and development. Improving innovation can lead to increased and faster growth, businesses can benefit from technological developments such as new ways of providing services. We want our share of this
  • 2.Developing skills. There is a proposal to develop a new system of technical education to benefit the half of young people that don’t go to university, boosting STEM skills, digital skills and numeracy. We have already made significant headway here not just in our cities but towns like Newton Abbot with its own University Technical College.
  • 3.Upgrading infrastructure. The government has awarded £191m to the South West across our seven counties. Broadband and mobile infrastructures, the bane of my mail box are suddenly being delivered – and about time too! The A303 improvements are also on their way.
  • 4.Supporting businesses to start and grow. While quite a bit has been done to help start-ups, not enough has been done to help those businesses scale up and grow. The Scale Up Institute and Business Bank will look at how to better target support. Much progress has already been made to help fund this segment of the market in the private sector.

But we can only get our fair share of support if we fight in a pack as the South West.

The Local Enterprise Partnerships across the seven counties have agreed to work together and started to look at a name which will enable us to compete with the Northern Powerhouse and the Midlands Engine.

The current working title is the Great South West. Innovate UK have already accepted us as equivalent to both these northern competitors. This is a journey started and a battle yet to be won. A name and an identity are not enough.

My next surgeries are at the Teign Heritage Centre, Teignmouth on Friday 10th at 12pm and at The Manor House, Dawlish on Friday 17th February at 11am. Please call 01626 368277 to make an appointment.

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MABS supports people dealing with debt

Nicky Rossiter.

AN OFFICER at Wexford’s Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS) has called upon any person in the community struggling with debt to seek support and take a brave step towards relieving themselves of their difficulties.

The service is one of a wide range of accessible supports in Wexford for those experiencing tough times.

Nicky Rossiter expressed his view that debt remains a taboo topic in Ireland and yet may be the underlying cause of many people’s difficulties.

An appointment with MABS, Mr. Rossiter said, can be arranged as quickly as within a day or two of a person making contact.

“They’ll get good ear in here,” he said of the service provided at offices at 98 / 100 South Main Street.

The money advisor stated that the MABS team was entirely understanding of how the prospect of seeking help for financial matters proved challenging for many, but said that meaningful help was available for those ready to accept it.

Wexford MABS can be contacted by calling 0761 072780, emailing wexford@mabs.ie or texting 086 453 5484 for a return call.

Read more in the Wexford Echo.

Schengen area: Council recommends prolongation of internal border controls


Under article 29 of the Schengen Borders Code, the Commission may propose a recommendation, to be adopted by the Council by qualified majority, to reintroduce controls at all or specific parts of the border of one or more member states as a matter of last resort. They may be introduced for a period of up to six months. Controls can be prolonged for additional six month periods up to a maximum duration of two years.  

On 4 May 2016, in the context of the migratory crisis, the Commission considered that the conditions for applying Article 29 of the Schengen Borders Code were fulfilled and submitted a recommendation to the Council. This was due to serious deficiencies in ensuring efficient controls at parts of the EU’s external borders, which put the functioning  of the entire Schengen area at risk. 

On 12 May 2016, the Council recommended to the five Schengen state most affected (Austria, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and Norway) that they maintain proportionate temporary border controls for a maximum period of six months to respond to the serious threat and to safeguard public policy and internal security, as a result of the secondary movements of irregular migrants.  

Given the fragile situation and the residue of pressure remaining in the members states most affected by these movements, on 11 November 2016 the Council recommended that these member states prolong proportionate temporary border controls for a maximum period of three months. 

On 25 January 2017, the Commission adopted a proposal for a Council implementing decision recommending to the five Schengen states that they prolong the temporary internal border controls for a further maximum period of three months.