|FOOT AND MOUTH was SUCCESSFULLY TREATED
by CUMBRIAN VET a HUNDRED YEARS AGO
Astrid Goddard researches
Henry Thompson, MRCVS was a prominent veterinary surgeon in Aspatria, Cumbria towards the end of the 19th century. He was born in the nearby town of Allonby into poor conditions, but it is thought that possibly an uncle helped to send him to college, where he won the Dick Medal for chemistry. He was a founder member of the town's agricultural college and lecturer at the college.
Well thought of by many people, Henry was an astounding man; blunt, with a sharp temper and highly intelligent. He could converse with the highest and the lowest in society and treated them all equally. He received many honours and accolades during his life.
In 1895 Henry Thompson enjoyed some success in the treatment of foot and mouth, having seen many cases of the disease, and noted the heavy loss of cattle particularly when calving.
The passage below is taken
from his book Elementary Lectures on the Veterinary Science for
Agricultural Students, Farmers and Stock Keepers (Publisher: T.
Brakenridge & Co. Ltd. of Whitehaven; 1895) when he was lecturer on
Veterinary Science at Aspatria Agricultural College.
Henry Thompson died on the 20th of July 1920, aged 84. He is buried in Aspatria churchyard where there is a fine sandstone memorial to him (pictured above).
I imagine he has been turning in his grave throughout the past year. The literal overkill of the government's approach to the foot and mouth outbreak would have been deeply distressing to such an intelligent and rational man, who understood - in 1895 - far more than the so-called "experts" at MAFF/DEFRA understand today.