An angry, sad, emotional book about FMD in Devon: lest we forget IFBN

Published in Devon at the Chagford Show today, this haunting record - and warning - of the horrors of foot and mouth. It's rather special. LAUNCHED TODAY AT CHAGFORD SHOW 'SILENCE AT RAMSCLIFFE'

The horror of food and mouth disease in the Spring of 2001 has scarcely faded in the minds of any of the farmers and workers whom it affected but how long does it take for 'government', politicians and 'the public' to forget what happens if vigilance of disease observation and control is allowed to become negligent?

Photographer Chris Chapman and rural poet James Crowden have put together a black and white book of stark and moving photographs, angry and anguished poems, and straight records of 'what it was really like' for those involved.

"Documentary photographer Chris Chapman had unprecedented access to study a contiguous cull on a farm in North Devon," say the publishers, Bardwell Press of Oxford. "Later he was joined by poet James Crowden to tour the farm and surrounding region to share the pain he had witnessed. The book combines the view of the photographer and the poet, neither flinching from the reality of what they saw."

The authors say they hope it will also act as a form of catharsis for those directly affected by the 'Government's appalling and callous handling of the tragedy'.

The book contains more than sombre stories of horrendous killing and heartbreak. Towards the end, various kinds of analysis are included, factual, objective and subjective conclusions are reached, references quoted and historical connections made. It's one of those books that brings the whole thing back to life and should be kept in every college and public library excellent material for student projects, and for reminding one's children and grandchildren what it was really like. Most important, though, is that it should be drawn to the attention of politicians and accountants next time they decide to remove safety measures from national bio-security.

More details of the book by clicking here. The book costs 25, and its ISBN is 0-9548683-3-1. It includes a DVD of the same name, courtesy of ITV West.