A weekly round-up of rural rumpuses

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The Independent Travel
Straying pigs earned a farmer pounds 350 in fines this week, at Pickering court, north Yorkshire. The court was told by PC Michael Cooke how he was called to Main Street, Howsham on 1 May by people frantically trying to stop the pigs truffling up their gardens. The magistrates took previous similar offences into consideration, one of which involved Bernard Newcombe's cattle causing a road accident in Scarborough.

In the West Country, a campaign was launched to stop the spread of radio aerials in prominent, and often scenic, locations. Councils have been told by the Department of the Environment to look favourably on planning applications for aerials. The BBC wants to erect a 100ft mast on Exeter Hill, Tiverton, to improve radio reception. And the mobile phone company Orange has plans for 70ft ones at Upottery and Whimple, so that people nearby can use the company's phones. The Council for the Protection of Rural England has protested to the Government about its planning advice.

A thousand fish died when a blocked sewer overflowed into Pocklington Canal, near York. Dave Cox, of the National Rivers Authority, said: "The sewage effectively removes oxygen from the water which causes the fish to suffocate." The NRA pumped oxygen into the canal in an attempt to save other water life.

In Truro, Cornwall, an elderly couple are facing escalating attacks on their herd of 20 Shetland ponies. The ponies are attacked with iron bars, sticks and stones and have had fireworks thrown at them. It is believed local children and teenagers are responsible.

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