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Last Updated: Friday, 29 July 2005, 16:28 GMT 17:28 UK
Regional cattle market shuts down
Close-up of a cow
Several hundred animals were sold at the Bristol market every week
Farmers in parts of the West have been left without a livestock market after the closure of a major centre.

The Bristol Cattle Market held its last auction on Thursday after a decision by the landowner to shut it down.

Farmers will now have to travel to Frome to sell livestock. In the past three years markets in Chippenham, Avon and Gloucestershire have also closed.

The National Farmers' Union (NFU) said it was holding last-minute talks in the hope of reversing the decision.

We are involved in 11th-hour discussions to keep the Bristol market open
Anthony Gibson, NFU

NFU South West regional director Anthony Gibson said the closure was "very regrettable" and resulted from a difference of opinion between the landowner and tenant.

"With the closures in Gloucestershire, Chippenham and Avon Livestock market at Winford, it will leave a large part of North Somerset, South Gloucestershire and North West Wiltshire without a livestock market," he said.

"The Bristol market had the potential to fill that gap."

Hundreds of farmers would be forced to use Premier Livestock Auctions' Frome market to sell their livestock, he added.

Several hundred cattle and sheep are sold at the Bristol market every week.

Mr Gibson said the journey from North Bristol would not be easy on farmers and livestock.

"We are involved in 11th-hour discussions to keep the Bristol market open, but I would not necessarily hold out much hope. It's just one of those things," he said.




SEE ALSO:
Cattle market opens at new base
03 Feb 05 |  Wiltshire
End of the line for market
27 Feb 03 |  England


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