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A planning application for an intensive broiler chicken farm in the UK has been withdrawn – just 24 hours before it was due to be considered by the local council.

The proposed site in Northamptonshire would have housed more than 540,000 chickens at any time – making it one of the biggest in the UK.

No reason was given for the withdrawal, which follows a numerous public objections. A petition opposing the farm was signed by more than 5,000 PETA supporters and a campaign was organized by local residents.

Inside a UK chicken farm (Video: PETA)

Filthy

Speaking about the proposals before they were withdrawn, welfare charity Compassion in World Farming said: “There is little information available about manner in which the chickens would be kept inside the 10 giant sheds, but we know they will be suffering from overcrowding in filthy conditions, barren environments, and rapid growth rates.

“This is not the direction in which British farming should be going. Please consider objecting to this farm today.

“Approving a mega-farm of this scale would have national ramifications.”

The charity outlined a number of issues a facility of that size could have, citing reports which show ‘the detrimental impacts of factory farming on animal welfare, human health, rural livelihoods and the environment’.

Looking at UK chicken farming (Video: The Guardian)

Local campaign

Local campaigning played a huge role in the success – with a group called Cluck Off working to see off the proposals.

Cluck Off member Roger Barnes told local media: “We are all delighted. I would like to thank all the team that’s helped out, they have all played a big part in this.

“It was tremendous that the council backed us as well and recommended it for refusal. We are also so grateful for how much [local MP] Peter Bone has helped us, we wouldn’t have got where we are now without his help.”

Maria Chiorando

Maria is the editor of Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle.