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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 September 2007, 16:30 GMT 17:30 UK
Foot-and-mouth begins to bite
The outbreak of foot-and-mouth in Surrey is already beginning to affect the lives of those who live and work in the surrounding area, particularly those in Egham and Windsor, in neighbouring Berkshire.

Foot-and-mouth warning sign
Footpaths are closed within the protection zone

Royal officials, whose duties included overseeing Windsor Great Park, have moved swiftly to take precautionary measures following the confirmation of foot-and-mouth in a farm near Egham.

A carriage driving competition and all polo matches at the Guards Polo Club - which falls within the 10-km control zone around the outbreak - have been cancelled, according to the Crown Estate.

It said that gates have been closed, disinfectant pads established, and the deer park closed around Windsor Castle, which is also within the control zone.

Horse riding permits have been suspended and dogs will have to kept on leads.

One event to fall foul of the outbreak is the National Carriage Driving Championships, due to take place in Windsor Great Park from Friday until Sunday.

'Mammoth job'

Organised by the British Horse Driving Trials Association, the original event was cancelled but organisers hope to reschedule it for 21-24 September at Catton Park, Derbyshire.

Jill Holah organised the championships for the association, and said much of her time had been spent ringing round all those who were due to compete in the event to tell them not to come.

"We're all devastated. We had 110 competitors from all over the country, some were from Scotland and Ireland and had already set off.

The police won't let you into your farm. I've just had a row with them myself
Bryan Lloyd

"It's been a mammoth job to call it all off. There were 60 stewards and sponsors, it's a huge event and was all up and ready to go."

Mrs Holah said that "a couple of thousand people" were expected to attend this annual event, and that they did not have insurance that would cover the cancellation.

"I don't know how much it will cost us all. It's the climax of the carriage driving year."

She added that the Windsor Classic Car show, also due to take place on Sunday in the park and which was to have 200 vehicles on show, has also had to be cancelled.

There are two farms within the Windsor estate, one containing some 200 Jersey cattle, 2,000 pigs and 6,000 hens among other animals. The second farm is a 500-acre dairy farm, and there is also a 600-strong deer herd at Windsor.

The Crown Estate - which owns and runs Crown land - said in a statement that it would be "co-operating fully with DEFRA" following the foot-and-mouth outbreak.

Checking licences

Bryan Lloyd farms next to the land at the centre of the latest outbreak near Egham. He said there had been a lot of activity in the area, with lorries arriving to take carcasses away.

Mr Lloyd told the BBC the restrictions meant it was hard to check on his pigs.

Police and member of public
Police are keeping a watch on movements in the area

"We're all very worried about what's going to happen," he said.

"But only time will tell. The police won't let you into your farm. I've just had a row with them myself.

"They won't let anybody into their property. They're checking all the licences and obviously us with the pig farms, we're the ones that need to be getting in to sort our animals out.

"We just got to wait and see, we've got to wait for one of the health people from Defra to come down and take some tests of the animals. And then we'll find out from there."




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