Rory has welcomed news that Defra Ministers are to find emergency funding to help support livestock farmers to meet the costs of disposal of dead animals, particularly those affected by the recent unprecedented snowfall in areas of Cumbria; the worst-hit farmers were largely concentrated in the constituencies of Rory Stewart, Tim Farron, and Jamie Reed, however the news comes as a direct result of the cross-party Cumbrian MP ‘committee’, which lobbied the Secretary of State Owen Paterson directly, and led to the visit to Cumbria last week by Minister David Heath.

Rory has also lobbied Ministers personally for financial support on the back of an especially harsh and protracted winter, itself following eighteen uninterrupted months of wet weather, causing extreme difficulties for Penrith and the Border’s upland farms. Recent storm conditions carried on for in excess of 72 hours, causing white-out conditions. Farmers are yet to assess the full extent of the disaster.

Rory said today: “This is wonderful news, and is the second time in under a month that Ministers have responded to Cumbria’s farming needs – the first was when they suspended EU regulations to allow farmers to get feed trucks to isolated farms in a temporary derogation of the Working Time Directive, and now we can see them respond quickly, again, to pressure from all Cumbrian MPs. I was delighted to play a small personal role in this, and am extremely pleased to hear also that Ministers will be putting measures in place to ensure such emergency situations are better dealt with in the future.”

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