I AM writing to draw attention to the possible resumption of the export of live horses and ponies from the UK to other parts of Europe for slaughter.

In the 1920s, people who were shocked to witness the suffering of these animals campaigned tirelessly to stop this cruel and unnecessary trade.

The International League for the Protection of Horses managed to get legislation passed which established the principle of minimum values.

This meant equines under a certain value could not be exported and it effectively stopped the trade.

Now the Department for the Environmental Food and Rural Affairs and the European Commission have stated under a new EU regulation, the UK will not be able to retain minimum values legislation.

Please write to your MP and the minister concerned, the Rt. Hon. Margaret Beckett, DEFRA, Nobel House, 17 Smith Square, London SW1P 3JR, urging the UK government demand an opt out be included in the proposed EU regulation so the minimum values legislation can be preserved.

This matter is urgent as the proposed regulation is to be considered by the Council of Agricultural Ministers on April 26.

Mrs P Stevens
Eversley Avenue