Cattle do not have FMD - says farmer

Surrey farmer Mark Lawrence insisted today that his cattle do not have foot-and-mouth disease.A 3km temporary control zone was set up around his 2,000-acre farm near Dorking in Surrey - 10 miles away from the site of the first confirmed case of foot-and-mouth disease.

Surrey farmer Mark Lawrence insisted today that his cattle do not have foot-and-mouth disease.

A 3km temporary control zone was set up around his 2,000-acre farm near Dorking in Surrey - 10 miles away from the site of the first confirmed case of foot-and-mouth disease.

A new restricted area was set up last night outside the existing surveillance area, after an "inconclusive assessment" of symptoms in cattle, officials at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said.

Today, Mr Matthews said he was "absolutely sure' the disease was not on his farm although his animals showed signs of ulcers but there were no lesions.

Swabs and blood tests on his calves were being carried out to confirm it was not foot and mouth.

He had contacted Defra to have the animals tested and expected the results later today.

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Mr Matthews also owns 200 acres of land some 10 miles away - half arable and the other half grazed by farmer John Gunner, whose cattle were affected in the second outbreak.

“I was so worried because of my links to Normandy. My cattle have never been inside any of those zones.'

Mr Matthews said he had around 800 cattle on the farm and he was confident that the flu-like symptoms that had appeared in 65 of his calves, such as watery eyes, would be a routine virus.

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