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Silence at Ramscliffe : Foot and Mouth in Devon
A book by Chris Chapman and James Crowden
250 x 250mm hardback, 136 pages including 53 B&W Photographs.
For many the slaughter of healthy farm animals during the Foot and Mouth outbreak of 2001, as part of a government sanctioned contiguous cull, was nothing short of genocide. True, the disease was virulent and widespread, but none of the lessons of the earlier 1967-68 outbreak had been learnt. In the words of Professor Fred Brown, the cull was "barbaric conduct" and "a disgrace to humanity." Commissioned by Devon County Council through Beaford Arts to make a record of Foot and Mouth Disease and its effect on the rural community, photographer Chris Chapman centred his story on the study of a contiguous farm in the parish of Beaford, North Devon. Later he invited the poet James Crowden to accompany him on a tour of the farm and the surrounding region, hoping to share with him the pain he had witnessed. This extraordinary result, from both poet and photographer, neither minces its words nor flinches from the reality.
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