Death fear for horses

Ruth Bainbridge with one of her horses. Ruth and her horses are getting kicked off the land they have been using for the last 18 years.'w5235a120
Ruth Bainbridge with one of her horses. Ruth and her horses are getting kicked off the land they have been using for the last 18 years.'w5235a120

A HORSE owner fears her foals will have to be slaughtered after being ordered to leave greenbelt land.

Ruth Bainbridge has kept horses and ponies on 10 acres of once derelict land behind her Newmarket Lane home in Stanley for the past 18 years.

Developer Yorkcourt Properties bought the area two years ago as it plans to build a new development which could include a community stadium for the Wildcats.

But the scheme is on hold until after a public inquiry, which is due to be held in December, as the plans were called in by the government.

But Mrs Bainbridge, 43, has lost her latest battle to prevent her animals from being kicked off the land and has until next Friday to leave.

She claims it would be more humane for her remaining eight horses to be slaughtered rather than giving them away to the wrong people.

So far she has sold 11 ponies for as little as £50.

The mother-of-two said: “It has been traumatic. They are all young and healthy and the land will be vacant for many months, if not years.

“We have improved the land considerably and prevented undesirable people from using the area.”

She said the horses had been on the land unchallenged after being given permission by a farmer, but her plea was refused by the Land Registry.

She has been issued with a court order to vacate the land by next Friday and an injunction will prevent her from walking on the land.

Colin Mackie of Yorkcourt Properties said: “Mrs Bainbridge has had a long time to make arrangements as this has been going on for more than eight months.

“We have tried very hard to come to an arrangement, but this is an order which has been made by the courts and is now out of our hands.”

For details contact Mrs Bainbridge on 07960 167810.