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Source : 12/09/1989 Northampton Chronicle and Echo

With reference to the report about the Jesus Army pig farm blaze (Chronicle and Echo, August 23), as always in these horrendous fires, it is the financial loss that is the chief concern, probably the only concern as Mark Shield said 'It is a terrible mess and I dread to think what this is going to cost.' (Amen!)

I assume Jesus Army to be a religious order or sect. It is quite disgusting that they keep animals in this cruel system.

I thought the church preached compassion (except with animals, presumably!)

Assistant divisional fire officer Vince Simpson said 'Pigs are very stupid animals and many of them were running back towards the heat after we had rescued them.'

It appears Mr Simpson is not very well informed about pigs. Pigs are very intelligent creatures, if not more so than dogs. Perhaps it never occurred to him the screams from other terrified pigs probably drew the pigs back. I am outraged by his comment.

I suggest if people were locked away in the same respect as these animals and there was a fire and some people were released, on hearing the screams and cries from fellow humans, would not most peoples reaction be the same?

Daily somewhere in this country animals are burnt alive in factory farm fires. In 1986 alone, 60,445 died in factory farm fires. The numbers realistically are far higher since there are many intensive units throughout the country with as many as 160,000 birds to one unit. Many would die from smoke inhalation.

These animals die in the most horrific way, helplessly trapped in cages and pens, unable to escape or be released.

When is this so-called animal-loving nation going to stand up and be counted and call for a ban on this cruel degrading system?