Abattoir opened by Prince Charles closes

An abattoir run by Cumbrian farmers and opened by Prince Charles last year, has been forced to close because of foot and mouth.

At least 50 farmers invested £2,000 in the £680,000 Junction 38 plant at Raisgill Hall, Orton, but it now stands empty.

A partner in the business has pulled out but Steve Dunning, who has been the driving force behind the plant, blamed foot and mouth for its demise.

He said: "The business is closed and we're looking to work with a new partner. Before we closed, we were cutting up 100 cattle a week."

Although some animals are still going to slaughter markets,unning added: "Due to the pressure of foot and mouth, the directors said we had to stop what we were doing. The other partner we were working with left us, we certainly haven't gone bankrupt.

"We need a partner to work with and we're in talks with someone at the moment. With the right partner and trading situation, we'll be back on track soon."

The plant, which opened in February last year and employed around 18 people, was partly funded by Rural Regeneration Cumbria and bank loans.

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