Equine Welfare (Ragwort Control) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:39 pm on 21st March 2003.

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Photo of Jonathan Djanogly Jonathan Djanogly Conservative, Huntingdon 12:39 pm, 21st March 2003

I, too, am pleased to support the Bill. I congratulate my hon. Friend Mr. Greenway on his expert uncovering of the problems associated with this pernicious weed, which is a poison to our equine friends. However, many regard ragwort as the very essence of an English summer—a letter in one newspaper described it as

"meadows of wildflower covering the fading fields of Britain with a rich and cheerful gold,."— and many herbalists believe that Senecio jacobaea, also known as St. James' wort, has medicinal value: apparently, it can help to alleviate aches and pains and even stay catarrh. It has been said that the scientific evidence to back that claim is rather weak, and it is only used for external conditions.