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WICKHAM LABS - Planning victory
Posted 1 October 2002
A two year battle to stop Wickham Laboratories moving to a larger site in a neighbouring Hampshire village has resulted in a significant victory for local anti-vivisection campaigners.
Founded and still run today by veterinary surgeon, William Cartmell, the 40 year old lab conducts contract testing for drug and chemical companies and is thought to consume around 90,000 animals every year.
A BUAV undercover investigation in the early '90s showed that Wickham was involved in the whole ugly range of 'procedures'. This included poisoning animals and pouring corrosive substances into their eyes and onto shaved backs. The subjects were housed in squalid cages and, for the experiments themselves, were held in stocks and neck braces.
With the proposed move from Wickham village to nearby Upham, Cartmell had hoped to put some distance between himself and his tireless critics, led by local campaigner Helen Nelson. But Winchester City Council recently rejected the planning application after months of legal wrangling.
Local residents had expressed strong opposition to a plan they feared would change the rural character of their village, would produce increased traffic and noise pollution and attract noisy animal rights protests.
While Wickham lawyers have pledged to fight on, Helen says she will not be satisfied until Wickham Laboratories close completely. In this objective she is supported by local Lib Dem MP Mike Hancock.