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Slaughterhouses Act 1974

1974 CHAPTER 3

An Act to consolidate certain enactments relating to slaughterhouses and knackers’ yards and the slaughter of animals.

[8th February 1974]

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C1Act: certain functions transferred (1.7.1999) by virtue of S.I. 1999/672, art. 2, Sch. 1

Commencement Information

I1Act wholly in force at 1.4.1974 see s. 48(3).

Part IE+W Slaughterhouses and Knackers’ Yards

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C2Pt. I: power to transfer functions conferred by Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 (c. 22, SIF 100:1), s. 3(2)

Pt. I: certain functions transfered (7.8.1991) by S.I. 1991/1773, art. 8(1)(3), Sch.2

Pt. I: modified (7.8.1991) by S.I. 1991/1773, art. 8(2)(3), Sch.2

Pt. I: certain functions transfered (10.2.1992) by S.I. 1991/2913, art. 8(1)(3), Sch.2

Pt. I: modified (10.2.1992) by S.I. 1991/2913, art. 8(2)(3), Sch.2

Licensing of private slaughterhouses and knackers’ yardsE+W

1 Slaughterhouses and knackers’ yards to be licensed.E+W

(1)It shall be an offence—

(a)for the occupier of any premises to use them as F1. . . knacker’s yard, or to permit them to be so used, unless he holds a licence under this section authorising him to keep those premises as F1. . . a knacker’s yard, or

(b)for any person other than the occupier to use any premises as a F1. . . knacker’s yard, unless the occupier holds such a licence in respect of those premises.

(2)Licences under this section (in this Part of this Act referred to as “licences”) shall be granted by the local authority, subject to and in accordance with the provisions of this Part.

(3)Where any premises used or to be used for the confinement of animals awaiting slaughter in a F1. . . knacker’s yard are situated outside the curtilage of the premises used or to be used for the slaughter, separate licences may be granted authorising the use of those premises for the purposes of the confinement and the slaughter respectively.

(4)In relation to the use of any premises for or in connection with the slaughter of horses, a licence shall be of no effect unless it expressly authorises the use of the premises for that purpose.

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Amendments (Textual)

F1Words in s. 1(1)(a)(b)(3) repealed (11.9.1995) by S.I. 1996/2235, arts. 2, 11, Sch.

F22. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F2s. 2 repealed (11.09.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch

F33. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F3S. 3 repealed (11.09.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

4 Knacker’s yard licences and applications for such licences.E+W

(1)Where a local authority receive from the occupier of, or a person proposing to occupy, any premises an application for the grant or renewal of a licence authorising him to occupy those premises as a knacker’s yard, then, subject to subsections (3) and (4) below, the authority may grant or, as the case may be, renew the licence.

(2)Without prejudice to subsection (1) above and subject to section 6 below, a local authority may refuse to grant or, as the case may be, renew a knacker’s yard licence in respect of any premises if they are not satisfied that the requirements relating to knackers’ yards—

(a)of regulations under [F4section 16 of the Food Safety Act 1990], or

(b)of byelaws, if any, made by the authority under section 12 below,

are complied with in respect of those premises, or will be complied with before the date on which the licence or renewed licence comes into force.

(3)Subject to section 6 below, a local authority shall refuse to grant or, as the case may be, renew a knacker’s yard licence in respect of any premises unless they are satisfied that the requirements relating to knackers’ yards of construction regulations F5. . .are complied with in respect of those premises, or will be complied with before the date on which the licence or renewed licence comes into force.

(4)A local authority shall not grant or renew a knacker’s yard licence until an officer of the authority has inspected the premises named in the application and has made a report on those premises.

(5)A local authority may require a person who applies for the grant or renewal of a knacker’s yard licence to give to them, before his application is considered, information as to any other licence [F6which he has held] in respect of a slaughterhouse or [F7which he holds or has held in respect of a knacker’s yard], either in their district or in the district of another local authority [F6, or as to any slaughterhouse licence which he holds or has held]; and if an applicant who is so required gives the authority any information which is false in a material respect, he shall be guilty of an offence.

[F8(6)In subsection (5) above, “slaughterhouse licence” means a licence issued under regulations made by virtue of section 19(1)(b) of the Food Safety Act 1990 F9 for the use of any premises as a slaughterhouse.]

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Amendments (Textual)

F5Words in s. 4(3) repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(2), Sch. 14, para. 2(2)

F6Words inserted in s. 4(5) (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 5(1)(a)(c)

F7Words in s. 4(5) substituted (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 5(1)(b)

F8S. 4(6) inserted (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 5(2)

5 Notification of refusal of licence.E+W

(1)If a local authority refuse to grant or renew a licence, they shall forthwith give notice to the applicant of their decision in the matter, and a statement of the grounds on which that decision was based shall F10. . .if so required by the application within 14 days from the date of the decision, be given to him by the authority not later than 48 hours after they receive the requirement.

(2)Every notice under subsection (1) above shall state the right of appeal to a magistrates’ court for which provision is made by section 6(1) below and the time within which such an appeal may be brought.

(3)For the purposes of this section and sections 6 and 7 below, a refusal by a local authority—

(a)to grant a licence with an authorisation in respect of horses under section 1(4) above, or

(b)to renew a licence with such an authorisation,

shall be treated as a refusal to grant or, as the case may be, as a refusal to renew a licence.

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Amendments (Textual)

F10In s. 5(1) words from the beginning of paragraph (a) to “case,” in paragraph (b) repealed (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

6 Appeals against refusal of licence.E+W

(1)A person aggrieved by the refusal of a local authority to grant or renew a licence may appeal to a magistrates’ court, and that court may F11. . .vary or reverse the authority's decision

(2)The procedure on an appeal to a magistrates’ court under subsection (1) above shall be by way of complaint for an order, and [F12the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980] shall apply to the proceedings.

(3)The time within which such an appeal may be brought shall be 21 days from the date on which notice of the authority’s refusal was served upon the person desiring to appeal, and for the purpose of this subsection the making of the complaint shall be deemed to be the bringing of the appeal.

(4)A person aggrieved by an order, determination or other decision of a magistrates’ court under subsection (1) above may appeal to the Crown Court.

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Amendments (Textual)

F11In s. 6(1) words from the beginning of paragraph (a) to “case,” in paragraph (b) repealed (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

7 Right to continue to use premises pending appeal.E+W

Where a decision of a local authority refusing a licence, or a decision of a magistrates’ court on appeal against such a decision, makes it unlawful for a person to use any premises for a purpose for which he or his immediate predecessor had been lawfully using them at the date when the decision of the authority was given, he may continue to use them for that purpose until the time for appealing has expired and, if an appeal is lodged, until the appeal is finally disposed of or abandoned or has failed for want of prosecution.

8 Effect of court’s decision.E+W

Where on an appeal under section 6 above a court [F13declares a refusal of a slaughterhouse licence under section 3 above to be of no effect, or] varies or reverses any [F13other] decision of a local authority, it shall be the duty of the authority to give effect to the order of the court.

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Amendments (Textual)

F13Words in s. 8 repealed (S.) (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

9 Duration of licences.E+W

A licence shall remain in force for such period not exceeding 13 months as may be fixed by the local authority, but may from time to time be renewed by them for a period not exceeding 13 months at any one time.

10 Temporary continuance of licence on death.E+W

Where a person who holds a licence dies, the licence shall, unless previously cancelled, enure for the benefit of his personal representative, or of his widow or any other member of his family, until the expiration of two months from his death, or until the expiration of such longer period as the local authority may allow.

Regulation of private slaughterhouses and knackers’ yardsE+W

F1411. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F14s. 11 repealed (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

12 Byelaws about slaughterhouses and knackers’ yards.E+W

(1)A local authority may, . . . F15, make byelaws—

(a)for securing that F16. . . knackers’ yards are kept in a sanitary condition and are properly managed, and

(b)requiring a person licensed to keep a knacker’s yard to keep, and to produce when required, records of animals brought into the yard and of the manner in which those animals and the different parts thereof were disposed of.

(2)Nothing in Part II of this Act shall be construed as restricting any power to make byelaws under paragraph (a) of subsection (1) above; but, in so far as any byelaws under that subsection conflict with regulations under [F17section 16 of the Food Safety Act 1990], the regulations shall prevail.

(3)The confirming authority in respect of any byelaws under this section shall be the Minister.

(4)If a person convicted of an offence against any byelaw made under this section holds a licence in respect of the premises where the act was committed, the court may, in addition to any other punishment, cancel the licence.

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Amendments (Textual)

F16Words in s. 12(1)(a) repealed (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, arts. 3(1), 11, Sch.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

F1813. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F18S. 13 repealed (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, arts. 4, 11, Sch.

Restriction of private slaughterhousesE+W

14 Restriction of slaughterhouses only by agreement.E+W

[F19(1)] Nothing in, or in any instrument made under, any local Act shall make unlawful, or subject any person to any penalty by reason of, the use of any premises as a slaughterhouse or the slaughter of animals on any premises at a time when a slaughterhouse licence is in force in respect of the premises; but, with a view to reducing the number of slaughterhouses, a local authority may—

(a)acquire by agreement any premises in their district which are used as a slaughterhouse and discontinue the use of the premises for that purpose;

(b)agree with the person interested in any premises in the district which are used as a slaughterhouse for the discontinuance of slaughtering on those premises.

[F20(2)In this section, “slaughterhouse licence” means a licence issued under regulations made by virtue of section 19(1)(b) of the Food Safety Act 1990 for the use of any premises as a slaughterhouse]

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Amendments (Textual)

F19S. 14 renumbered as 14(1) (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 5(3)

F20S. 14(2) inserted (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 5(3)

Provision and management of public slaughterhousesE+W

15 Power to provide public slaughterhouses.E+W

(1)Subject to the provisions of this section, a local authority may provide public slaughterhouses.

(2)Any proposal by a local authority to provide under this section a slaughterhouse within the district of another local authority shall require the consent of that authority; but such consent shall not be unreasonably withheld, and any question whether or not the consent of an authority for the purposes of this subsection is unreasonably withheld shall be referred to and determined by the Minister.

(3)It is hereby declared that the power conferred on local authorities by subsection (1) above is exercisable in either of the following ways, that is to say—

(a)by acquiring (whether by purchase, lease or otherwise) or appropriating land and providing slaughterhouse facilities there, or

(b)by acquiring (whether by purchase, lease or otherwise) land on which such facilities have been provided by other persons and securing that such facilities continue to be provided there;

and references in this Part of this Act to a local authority providing a slaughterhouse shall be construed accordingly.

(4)In subsection (3) above “slaughterhouse facilities” means facilities for carrying on the activities of a slaughterhouse, including plant and apparatus and the services of persons as slaughtermen or otherwise.

(5)Nothing in [F21section 14] above shall apply in relation to a public slaughterhouse provided by a local authority.

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Amendments (Textual)

F21Words in s. 15(5) substituted (11.9.1996) by S. I. 1996/2235, art. 5(4)

16 Management of public slaughterhouses.E+W

(1)A local authority who have provided a public slaughterhouse—

F22(a). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(b)may provide plant or apparatus for disposing of, treating or processing waste matters, refuse or by-products, resulting from the slaughter of animals in the slaughterhouse;

(c)may, if they think fit, employ persons to slaughter or stun, in accordance with [F23the Welfare of Animals (Slaughter or Killing) Regulations 1995, horses (including hinnies, asses and mules), cattle, sheep, swine or goats];

(d)subject to subsection (2) below, may make such arrangements as they think expedient for securing that all the activities of the slaughterhouse, or any particular activities, are carried on there by servants or agents of theirs to the exclusion of other persons.

(2)A local authority shall not exercise the power conferred by subsection (1)(d) above in such a manner as to deny any religious community reasonable facilities for obtaining as food the flesh of animals slaughtered by the method specially required by their religion.

F22(3). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

F22(4). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F23Words in s. 16(1)(c) substituted (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(2), Sch. 14, para. 2(3)

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

17 Charges in respect of public slaughterhouses.E+W

(1)A local authority who have provided a public slaughterhouse may make charges, according to scales determined by them from time to time, in respect of the use of the slaughterhouse or of any services provided there.

(2)Every scale of charges determined by a local authority for the purposes of this section shall be published by them in at least one newspaper circulating in their district and in such other manner (if any) as they think expedient for informing persons interested.

18 Power to provide cold stores and refrigerators for public slaughterhouses.E+W

(1)Subject to the provisions of this section, a local authority who have provided, or are about to provide, a public slaughterhouse, may, . . . F24, provide a cold store or refrigerator for the storage and preservation of meat and other articles of food and may make charges in respect of the use of any such store or refrigerator.

(2)Any proposal by a local authority to provide under this section a cold store or refrigerator within the district of another local authority shall require the consent of that authority; but that consent shall not be unreasonably withheld and any question whether or not the consent of an authority for the purposes of this subsection is unreasonably withheld shall be referred to and determined by the Minister.

(3)—(5). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F25

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Amendments (Textual)

Enforcement and legal proceedingsE+W

19 Execution and enforcement of Part I.E+W

It shall be the duty of every local authority to execute and enforce in their district the provisions of any section of this Part of this Act with respect to which the duty is not expressly, or by necessary implication, imposed on some other authority.

20 Powers of entry.E+W

(1)Subject to the provisions of this section, an authorised officer of a council shall, on producing, if so required, some duly authenticated document showing his authority, have a right to enter any premises at all reasonable hours—

(a)for the purpose of ascertaining whether there is or has been on, or in connection with, the premises any contravention of the provisions of this Part of this Act or of any byelaws made under it, being provisions which the council are required or empowered to enforce, and

(b)generally for the purpose of the performance by the council of their functions under this Part of this Act or under any such byelaws;

but admission to any premises used only as a private dwellinghouse shall not be demanded as of right unless 24 hours’ notice of the intented entry has been given to the occupier.

(2)If a justice of the peace, on sworn information in writing,—

(a)is satisfied that there is reasonable ground for entry into any premises for any such purpose as mentioned in subsection (1) above, and

(b)is also satisfied either—

(i)that admission to the premises has been refused, or a refusal is apprehended and that notice of the intention to apply for a warrant has been given to the occupier, or

(ii)that an application for admission, or the giving of such a notice, would defeat the object of the entry, or that the case is one of urgency, or that the premises are unoccupied or the occupier temporarily absent,

the justice may by warrant under his hand, which shall continue in force for a period of one month, authorise the council by any authorised officer to enter the premises, if need be by force.

(3)An authorised officer entering any premises by virtue of this section, or of a warrant issued under it, may take with him such other persons as may be necessary, and on leaving any unoccupied premises which he has entered by virtue of such a warrant shall leave them as effectively secured against trespassers as he found them.

(4)If any person who, in compliance with the provisions of this section, or of a warrant issued under it, is admitted into a factory or workplace discloses to any person any information obtained by him in the factory or workplace with regard to any manufacturing process or trade secret, he shall, unless the disclosure was made in the performance of his duty, be liable to a fine not exceeding [F26level 3 on the standard scale] or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months.

(5)Nothing in this section shall authorise any person, except with the permission of the local authority under the [F27Animal Health Act 1981], to enter any cowshed or other place in which an animal affected with any disease to which that Act applies is kept and which is situated in a place declared under that Act to be infected with such a disease.

(6)In this section “authorised officer”, in relation to a council, means an officer of the council authorised by them in writing, either generally or specially, to act in matters of any specified kind or in any specified matter.

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Amendments (Textual)

21 Obstruction.E+W

(1)A person who wilfully obstructs any person acting in the execution of this Part of this Act, or of any byelaw or warrant made or issued under it, shall be liable—

(a)if the court is satisfied that he committed the offence with intent to prevent the discovery of some other offence under this Part of this Act, or if he has within the previous 12 months been convicted of an offence under this subsection, to a fine not exceeding [F28level 3 on the standard scale] or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one month;

(b)in any other case, to a fine not exceeding [F29level 1 on the standard scale].

(2)A person who—

(a)fails to give to any person acting in the execution of this Part of this Act, or of any byelaw or warrant made or issued under it, any assistance which that person may reasonably request him to give;

(b)fails to give to any such person any information which that person is expressly authorised by this Part of this Act to call for or may reasonably require; or

(c)when required to give any such information, knowingly makes any misstatement in respect thereof,

shall be liable to a fine not exceeding [F30level 1 on the standard scale]; but nothing in this subsection shall be construed as requiring a person to answer any question or give any information, if to do so might incriminate him.

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Amendments (Textual)

22 Institution of proceedings by local authorities.E+W

A local authority may institute proceedings under any section of this Part of this Act if, and only if, they are the authority charged with its execution and enforcement.

23 Prosecution and punishment of offences.E+W

(1)All offences under this Part of this Act and byelaws made under it shall be punishable on summary conviction.

(2)A person guilty of an offence under this Part of this Act shall, unless a special punishment for that offence is provided by this Part, be liable—

(a)to a fine not exceeding [F31level 3 on the standard scale] or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months or to both, and

(b)in the case of a continuing offence, to a further fine not exceeding £5 for each day during which the offence continues after conviction.

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Amendments (Textual)

24 Offences by corporations.E+W

(1)Where an offence under this Part of this Act which has been committed by a body corporate is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of, or to be attributable to any neglect on the part of, any director, manager, secretary or other similar officer of the body corporate, or any person who was purporting to act in any such capacity, he as well as the body corporate shall be deemed to be guilty of that offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

(2)In subsection (1) above “director”, in relation to any body corporate established by or under any enactment for the purpose of carrying on under national ownership any industry or part of an industry or undertaking, being a body corporate whose affairs are managed by the members thereof, means a member of that body corporate.

25 Contravention due to default of some other person.E+W

(1)A person against whom proceedings are brought under this Part of this Act shall, upon information duly laid by him and on giving to the prosecution not less than three clear days’ notice of his intention, be entitled to have any person to whose act or default he alleges that the contravention of the provisions in question was due brought before the court in the procedings; and if, after the contravention has been proved,—

(a)the original defendant proves that the contravention was due to the act or default of that other person, that other person may be convicted of the offence;

(b)the original defendant further proves that he has used all due diligence to secure that the provisions in question were complied with, he shall be acquitted of the offence.

(2)Where a defendant seeks to avail himself of the provisions of subsection (1) above—

(a)the prosecution, as well as the person whom the defendant charges with the offence, shall have the right to cross-examine him, if he gives evidence, and any witness called by him in support of his pleas, and to call rebutting evidence;

(b)the court may make such order as it thinks fit for the payment of costs by any party to the proceedings to any other party thereto.

(3)Where it appears to the authority concerned that an offence has been committed in respect of which proceedings might be taken under this Part of this Act against some person and the authority are reasonably satisfied that the offence of which complaint is made was due to an act or default of some other person and that the first-mentioned person could establish a defence under subsection (1) above, they may cause proceedings to be taken against that other person without first causing proceedings to be taken against the first-mentioned person.

(4)In any proceedings taken by virtue of subsection (3) above the defendant may be charged with, and, on proof that the contravention was due to his act or default, be convicted of, the offence with which the person first mentioned in that subsection might have been charged.

26 Appeals to Crown Court.E+W

Where a person aggrieved by an order, determination or other decision of a magistrates’ court under this Part of this Act is not by any other enactment authorised to appeal to the Crown Court, he may appeal to that court.

Miscellaneous and supplementalE+W

27 Local authorities for purposes of Part I.E+W

In this Part of this Act “local authority” means—

(a)as respects the City of London, the Common Council;

(b)as respects any London borough, the council of the borough; F32. . .

(c)as respects any district [F33in England], the council of the district [F34and.

(d)as respects any county or county borough in Wales, the council of the county or county borough.]

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Amendments (Textual)

F32Word in s. 27(b) repealed (1.4.1996) by 1994 c. 19, s. 66(6)(8), Sch. 16, para. 43(1), Sch. 18, (with ss. 54(5)(7), 55(5)); S.I. 1996/396, art. 4, Sch. 2

F33Word inserted in s. 27(c) (1.4.1996) by 1994 c. 19, s. 66(6), Sch. 16, para. 43(1)(with ss. 54(5)(7), 55(5)); S.I. 1996/396, art. 4, Sch. 2

F34S. 27(d) and the word preceding it added (1.4.1996) by 1994 c. 19, s. 66(6), Sch. 16, para. 43(1)(with ss. 54(5)(7), 55(5)); S.I. 1996/396, art. 4, Sch. 2

28 Port health authorities and joint boards.E+W

Orders made by the Secretary of State—

(a) . . . F35

(b)under section 6 of that Act may constitute for the purposes of any such functions a united district and a joint board for that district;

and any such order may be amended by the Secretary of State under section 9 of that Act.

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Amendments (Textual)

29 Protection for local government officers acting in good faith.E+W

(1)An officer of a council shall not be personally liable in respect of any act done by him in the execution or purported execution of this Part of this Act and within the scope of his employment, if he did that act in the honest belief that his duty under this Part required or entitled him to do it; but nothing in this subsection shall be construed as relieving a council from any liability in respect of acts of their officers.

(2)Where an action has been brought against an officer of a council in respect of an act done by him in the execution or purported execution of this Part of this Act and the circumstances are such that he is not legally entitled to require the council to indemnify him, the council may, nevertheless, indemnify him against the whole or a part of any damages and costs which he may have been ordered to pay or may have incurred, if they are satisfied that he honestly believed that the act complained of was within the scope of his employment and that his duty under this Part of this Act required or entitled him to do it.

30 Power of compulsory purchase of land.E+W

(1)A local authority may be authorised by the Minister to purchase land compulsorily for the purposes of this Part of this Act other than those of section 14 above; and for the purposes of this section “land” has the same meaning as in the M1Public Health Act 1936.

(2)In relation to the compulsory purchase of land under this section, the [F36Acquisition of Land Act 1981] shall apply . . . F37.

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Amendments (Textual)

Marginal Citations

31 Local inquiries.E+W

(1)Where any Minister is authorised by this Part of this Act to determine any difference, to give any confirmation, to make any order, or otherwise to act under this Part of this Act, he may cause a local inquiry to be held.

(2)Subsections (2) to (5) of section 250 of the M2Local Government Act 1972 shall apply in relation to a local inquiry held under subsection (1) above in any case where a Minister is authorised to determine any difference as they apply in relation to a local inquiry which a Minister causes to be held under subsection (1) of that section.

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Marginal Citations

32 Incorporation of certain provisions of Public Health Act 1936.E+W

(1)The supplementary provisions of the M3Public Health Act 1936 mentioned in subsection (2) below shall be deemed to be incorporated, so far as applicable, in this Part of this Act; and in those provisions as so incorporated—

(a)any reference to that Act shall be construed as a reference to this Part of this Act; and

(b)any reference to the Minister within the meaning of that Act shall be construed as a reference to the Minister within the meaning of this Part of this Act.

(2)The provisions of the M4Public Health Act 1936 referred to in subsection (1) above are—

  • . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F38

  • section 283 (notices to be in writing; forms of notices etc.);

  • section 284 (authentication of documents);

  • section 285 (service of notices);

  • . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F38

  • section 304 (judges and justices not to be disqualified by liability to rates);

  • section 317 (power to repeal and alter local Acts by provisional orders);

  • [F39sections 322, 324, 325] (default powers in relation to functions of councils); and

  • section 328 (powers of Act to be cumulative).

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Amendments (Textual)

Marginal Citations

33 Application to Crown.E+W

(1)Her Majesty may by Order in Council provide for the application to the Crown of such of the provisions of this Part of this Act and of any regulations made under it as may be specified in the Order, with such exceptions, adaptations and modifications as may be so specified.

(2)Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1) above, an Order in Council under this section may make special provision for the enforcement of any provisions applied by the Order, and, where any such provision imposes a liability on a person by reason that he is the occupier of premises, the Order may make provision for determining, in a case where the premises are occupied by the Crown, the person who is to be treated as so liable.

(3)Any Order in Council under this section—

(a)shall be made by statutory instrument and shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament;

(b)may be revoked or varied by a subsequent Order in Council so made.

34 Interpretation of Part I.E+W

In this Part of this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,—

  • animal” does not include bird or fish;

  • construction regulations” means regulations with respect to the construction, lay-out or equipment of premises used as a slaughterhouse or knacker’s yard;

  • council” includes a port health authority;

  • district”, in relation to the local authority of a London borough or the City of London, and in relation to the officers of such an authority, means the borough or the City, as the case may be; [F40and, in relation to—

    (a)

    a local authority who are the council of a Welsh county or county borough, and

    (b)

    the officers of such an authority,

    means that county or county borough;]

  • functions” includes powers and duties;

  • horse” includes ass and mule;

  • knacker’s yard” means any premises used in connection with the business of slaughtering, flaying or cutting up animals whose flesh is not intended for human consumption;

  • licence” means a licence under section 1 above authorising the use of any premises as a slaughterhouse or knacker’s yard, and F41. . .and “knacker’s yard licence” shall be construed accordingly;

  • local authority” has the meaning assigned to it by section 27 above and, in relation to any premises or to an application in respect of any premises, means the local authority within whose district the premises are situated;

  • the Minister” means the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food;

  • officer” includes servant;

  • F41. . .

  • slaughterhouse” means a place for slaughtering animals whose flesh is intended for sale for human consumption, and includes any place available in connection therewith for the confinement of animals while awaiting slaughter there or for keeping, or subjecting to any treatment or process, products of the slaughtering of animals there.

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Amendments (Textual)

F40In s. 34 in the definition of “district”words and sub-paragraphs (a)(b) added (1.4.1996) by 1994 c. 19, s. 66(6), Sch. 16, para. 43(2), (with ss. 54(5)(7), 55(5)); S.I. 1996/396, art. 4, Sch. 2

F41Definition of “district”in s. 34 repealed (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C5Functions of the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food under Part I of this Act now exercisable by Minister and Secretary of State jointly: S.I. 1978/272, art. 4(1), Sch. 2

C6S. 34: definition of slaughterhouse applied (25.9.1991) by Agriculture and Forestry (Financial Provisions) Act 1991 (c. 33, SIF 2:2), ss. 2(11), 5(2).

35 Saving for port slaughterhouses and knackers’ yards.E+W

Nothing in this Part of this Act shall apply to any F42. . . knacker’s yard forming part of an imported animals’ wharf or landing place approved by the Minister under the [F43Animal Health Act 1981] for the purpose of the landing of imported animals.

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Amendments (Textual)

F42Words in s. 35 repealed (11.9.1996) by S.I. 1996/2235, art. 11, Sch.

Part IIE+W Slaughter of Animals

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C7Certain functions of the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food under Part II of this Act now exercisable (W.) by Secretary of State or Minister and Secretary of State jointly: S.I. 1978/272, art. 2, Sch. 1

Provisions as to slaughterE+W

F4436. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F44s. 36 repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C8s. 36 power to transfer functions conferred (3.1.1995) by 1994 c. 40, ss. 31, 82(2), Sch. 9, para. 2(1)(a), 4

F4537. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F45S. 37 repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

38 Regulations for securing humane conditions of slaughter in slaughterhouses and knackers’ yards.E+W

(1)The Minister may, after consultation with such organisations as appear to him to represent the interests concerned, make such regulations as appear to him to be expedient for securing humane conditions and practices in connection with the slaughter, in slaughterhouses and knackers’ yards, of [F46horses, cattle, sheep, swine or goats]; and such regulations may in particular—

(a)prescribe requirements as to the construction, lay-out and equipment of premises used as slaughterhouses or knackers’ yards;

(b)prescribe conditions to be observed in connection with the confinement and treatment of [F46horses, cattle, sheep, swine or goats] while awaiting slaughter in such premises, and in connection with the slaughter there of such animals.

(2)Regulations under this section may make different provision in relation to different kinds of animals and in relation to premises used for different purposes in connection with the slaughter of animals and may—

(a)so far as they are made for the purposes mentioned in subsection (1)(a) above, be made to apply subject to exceptions or modifications in relation to premises constructed or adapted for use before the date on which the regulations come into force;

(b)in any case be made without applying, or applying subject to exceptions or modifications, in relation to slaughterhouses forming part of an imported animals’ wharf or approved landing place for the purposes of the [F47Animal Health Act 1981], or applying (with or without exceptions or modifications) only in relation to any such slaughterhouse of that description as may be specified in the regulations;

(c)provide, subject to such limitations and safeguards, if any, as may be specified in the regulations, for the appropriate authority to grant in relation to particular premises, either unconditionally or subject to conditions, exemption from the operation of specific provisions of those regulations where it appears to the authority that compliance with those provisions cannot for the time being reasonably be required with respect to the premises or any activities carried on there;

(d)provide for the regulations to come into force on different days fixed by, or by an order to be made by statutory instrument under, the regulations in respect of different classes or descriptions of premises and different areas, and for different provisions to come into force on different days;

and in paragraph (c) above “appropriate authority”, except in relation to a slaughterhouse provided by a local authority, means a local authority, and in relation to a slaughterhouse so provided means the Minister.

(3)Regulations under this section may make provision corresponding (with or without modifications) with any of the provisions in force immediately before the commencement of the M5Slaughter of Animals (Amendment) Act 1954, under section 5(1) of the M6Protection of Animals Act 1911, section 4 of the M7Slaughter of Animals Act 1933 or section 1 of the M8Slaughter of Animals (Amendment) Act 1951.

F48(4). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

(5)Regulations under this section may prescribe penalties for offences against the regulations, not exceeding a fine of [F49level 3 on the standard scale] or imprisonment for a term of three months or both, and may impose on the occupiers of premises to which the regulations apply responsibility for compliance with any of the provisions of the regulations.

[F50(5A)Regulations under this section may require occupiers of premises used as slaughterhouses or knackers’ yards to secure that the provisions of regulations under this section are complied with on the premises.]

(6)Where a person convicted of any offence against regulations under this section (including a person so convicted by virtue of [F51section 44 of the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980]) is the holder of a licence under section 1 above in respect of the premises where the offence was committed, the court may, in addition to any other punishment, cancel the licence.

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Subordinate Legislation Made

P1S. 38: power exercised by S.I. 1983/688, 689, 1984/1310, 1311, 1990/1242

Amendments (Textual)

F46Words in s. 38(1) substituted (1.4.1995) by S.I. 1995/731, reg. 28(2), Sch. 14, para. 2(4)

F48S. 38(4) repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

F50S. 38(5A) inserted (27.8.1991) by Welfare of Animals at Slaughter Act 1991 (c. 30, SIF 112), ss. 1, 7(2).

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C9S. 38 power to transfer functions conferred (3.1.1995) by 1994 c. 40, ss. 31, 82(2), Sch. 9, para. 2(1)(b), 4

Marginal Citations

Licensing of slaughtermenE+W

F5239. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F52S. 39 repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

F5340. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F53S. 40 repealed (1.4.1995) by S.I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

Enforcement and legal proceedingsE+W

F5441(1). Execution and enforcement Part II.E+W

It shall be the duty of every local authority to execute and enforce in their district the provisions of this Part of this Act and of any regulations made under it.

[F55(2)In particular, every local authority shall, for the purpose of securing the execution of those provisions, make arrangements for the supervision by persons having such qualifications as may be prescribed by regulations under section 38 above of any premises in their district to which regulations under that section apply.

(3)Arrangements under subsection (2) above shall comply with such directions as the Minister may give from time to time.]

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Amendments (Textual)

F54S. 41 renumbered as s. 41(1) (27.8.1991) by Welfare of Animals at Slaughter Act 1991 (c. 30, SIF 112), ss. 4(1), 7(2).

F55S. 41(2)(3) added (27.8.1991) by Welfare of Animals at Slaughter Act 1991 (c. 30, SIF 112), ss. 4(2), 7(2).

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C10S. 41 power to transfer functions conferred (3.1.1995) by 1994 c. 40, ss. 31, 82(2), Sch. 9, paras. 2(1)(e), 4

[41AF56Codes of practice.E+W

(1)The Minister may from time to time, after consultation with such organisations as appear to him to represent the interests concerned—

(a)prepare and issue codes of practice for the purpose of providing practical guidance in respect of any provision of this Part of this Act or regulations under it; and

(b)revise any such code by revoking, varying, amending or adding to the provisions of the code.

(2)A code prepared in pursuance of this section and any alterations proposed to be made on a revision of such a code shall be laid before both Houses of Parliament, and the Minister shall not issue the code or revised code, as the case may be, until after the end of the period of 40 days beginning with the day on which the code or the proposed alterations were so laid.

(3)If, within the period mentioned in subsection (2) above, either House resolves that the code be not issued or the proposed alterations be not made, the Minister shall not issue the code or revised code (without prejudice to his power under that subsection to lay further codes or proposed alterations before Parliament).

(4)For the purposes of subsection (2) above—

(a)where a code or proposed alterations are laid before each House of Parliament on different days, the later day shall be taken to be the day on which the code or the proposed alterations, as the case may be, were laid before both Houses; and

(b)in reckoning any period of 40 days, no account shall be taken of any time during which Parliament is dissolved or prorogued or during which both Houses are adjourned for more than four days.

(5)The Minister shall cause any code issued or revised under this section to be printed and distributed, and may make such arrangements as he thinks fit for its distribution, including causing copies of it to be put on sale to the public at such reasonable price as the Minister may determine.

(6)A failure on the part of any person to follow any guidance contained in a code issued under this section shall not of itself render that person liable to proceedings of any kind.

(7)If, in proceedings against any person for an offence consisting of the contravention of any provision of this Part of this Act or of regulations under it, it is shown that, at any material time, he failed to follow any guidance contained in a code issued under this section, being guidance which was relevant to the provision concerned, that failure may be relied on by the prosecution as tending to establish his guilt.]

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Amendments (Textual)

F56S. 41A inserted (27.8.1991) by Welfare of Animals at Slaughter Act 1991 (c. 30, SIF 112), ss. 5(1), 7(2).

42 Powers of entry.E+W

(1)Subject to subsection (3) below, at any time when business is, or appears to be, in progress, or is usually carried on, in a slaughterhouse or knacker’s yard, any officer of the Minister, or an officer appointed for the purpose by the local authority within whose district the slaughterhouse or knacker’s yard is situate, may enter it for the purpose of ascertaining whether there is or has been any contravention of this Part of this Act or of any regulations made under it.

(2)Any person who obstructs a person in the exercise of his powers under subsection (1) above shall be guilty of an offence and liable to a fine not exceeding [F57level 1 on the standard scale].

(3)Subsection (1) above shall not authorise entry into a slaughterhouse or knacker’s yard which for the time being is, or is comprised in, an infected place within the meaning of the [F58Animal Health Act 1981].

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Amendments (Textual)

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C11S. 42(1) power to transfer functions conferred (3.1.1995) by 1994 c. 40, ss. 31, 82(2), Sch. 9,paras. 2(1)(f), 4

43 Prosecution and punishment of offences.E+W

(1)All offences under this Part of this Act and regulations made under it shall be punishable on summary conviction.

F59(2). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

F59(3). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

SupplementalE+W

44 Regulations.E+W

Any regulations under this Part of this Act shall be made by statutory instrument which shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

45 Interpretation of Part II.E+W

In this Part of this Act, unless the context otherwise requires—

  • contravention” in relation to a provision of this Part of this Act or of any regulations made under it, includes a failure to comply with that provision;

  • [F60district”, in relation to a local authority who are the council of a Welsh county or county borough, means that county or county borough;]

  • horse” includes ass and mule;

  • knacker’s yard” means any building, premises or place used in connection with the business of killing animals whose flesh is not intended for sale for human consumption;

  • local authority” means the council [F61 of a Welsh county or county borough or]of a district or London borough or the Common Council of the City of London;

  • the Minister” means the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food;

  • slaughterhouse” means any building, premises or place used in connection with the business of killing animals whose flesh is intended for sale for human consumption.

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Amendments (Textual)

F60Definition of “district”inserted (1.4.1996) by 1994 c. 19, s. 66(6), Sch. 16, para. 43(3)(a), (with ss. 54(5)(7), 55(5)); S.I. 1996/396, art. 4, Sch. 2

F61In s. 45 words inserted (1.4.1996) by 1994 c. 19, s. 66(6), Sch. 16, para. 43(3)(b), (with ss. 54(5)(7), 55(5)); S.I. 1996/396, art. 4, Sch. 2

Part IIIE+W Miscellaneous and General

46 Consequential and other amendments. E+W

(1)The enactments specified in Schedule 3 to this Act shall have effect subject to the amendments there specified, being amendments consequential upon the provsions of this Act.

(2). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F62

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Amendments (Textual)

Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C12The text of s. 46 is in the form in which it was originally enacted: it was not reproduced in Statutes in Force and, except as specified, does not reflect any amendments or repeals which may have been made prior to 1.2.1991.

47 Transitional provisions, savings and repeals.E+W

(1)The transitional provisions and savings contained in Schedule 5 to this Act shall have effect.

(2)Subject to the provisions of Schedule 5, the enactments specified in Schedule 6 to this Act are hereby repealed to the extent specified in the third column of that Schedule.

(3)Nothing in this Act shall be taken as prejudicing the operation of [F63sections 16(1) and 17(2)(a) of the M9Interpretation Act 1978] (which [F63relate] to the effect of repeals).

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Amendments (Textual)

F63Words substituted by virtue of Interpretation Act 1978 (c. 30), s. 25(2)

Marginal Citations

48 Short title, construction, commencement and extent.E+W

(1)This Act may be cited as the Slaughterhouses Act 1974.

(2)References in this Act to any enactment shall, except in so far as the context otherwise requires, be construed as references to that enactment as amended by or under any other enactment including this Act.

(3)This Act shall come into operation on 1st April 1974.

(4)This Act does not extend to Scotland or to Northern Ireland.

SCHEDULES

F64F64 SCHEDULE 1E+W

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F64Sch. 1 repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

F65F65 SCHEDULE 2E+W

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

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Amendments (Textual)

F65Sch. 2 repealed (1.4.1995) by S. I. 1995/731, reg. 28(1), Sch. 13

Section 46.

SCHEDULE 3E+W Consequential Amendments

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C13The text of Sch. 3 is in the form in which it was originally enacted: it was not reproduced in Statutes in Force and, except as specified, does not reflect any amendments or repeals which may have been made prior to 1.2.1991.

1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F66E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F672. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

3. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F68E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

4In section 1(2) of the M10Slaughter of Poultry Act 1967, for the words “the Slaughter of Animals Act 1958” there shall be substituted the words “the Slaughterhouses Act 1974”, and in section 1(4) of that Act for the word “1958” there shall be substituted the word “1974”.E+W

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Marginal Citations

5In section 10(1) of the Firearms Act 1968, for the words “section 3 of the Slaughter of Animals Act 1958” there shall be substituted the words “section 39 of the Slaughterhouses Act 1974”.E+W

6. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F69E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

F70F70SCHEDULE 4E+W

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Amendments (Textual)

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . F70

SCHEDULE 5E+W Transitional Provisions and Savings

1(1)In so far as anything done or having effect as if done under or in pursuance of any of the enactments repealed by this Act (in this Schedule referred to as “the repealed enactments”) could have been done under or in pursuance of a corresponding provision of this Act, it shall not be invalidated by the repeal but shall have effect as if done under or in pursuance of that provision; and anything begun under any of the repealed enactments may be continued under the corresponding provision of this Act as if begun under that provision.E+W

(2)Sub-paragraph (1) above applies in particular to any order, regulation, byelaw, application, determination, decision or agreement made, licence or authorisation granted or renewed, notice, consent or approval given, requirement imposed, warrant issued or inquiry held.

2Without prejudice to any express amendment made by this Act, where any enactment or document refers, either expressly or by implication, to any of the repealed enactments, the reference shall, except where the context otherwise requires, be construed as, or as including, a reference to the corresponding provision of this Act.E+W

3Where any period of time specified in any of the repealed enactments is current at the commencement of this Act, this Act shall have effect as if the corresponding provision of this Act had been in force when that period began to run.E+W

4(1)Nothing in this Act shall affect the repealed enactments in their operation in relation to offences committed before the commencement of this Act.E+W

(2)Where an offence, for the continuance of which a penalty was provided, has been committed under any of the repealed enactments, proceedings may be taken under this Act in respect of the continuance of the offence after the commencement of this Act, in the same manner as if the offence had been committed under the corresponding provision of this Act.

5Without prejudice to paragraph 1 above, any reference in this Act (whether express or implied) to a thing done or required or authorised to be done, or omitted to be done, or to an event which has occurred, under or for the purposes of or by reference to or in contravention of any of the provisions of this Act shall, except where the context otherwise requires, be construed as including a reference to the corresponding thing done or required or authorised to be done, or omitted, or to the corresponding event which occurred as the case may be, under or for the purposes of or by reference to or in contravention of the corresponding provisions of the repealed enactments and of the enactments repealed by those enactments.E+W

6Nothing in this Act shall affect the operation of section 84 of the M11London Government Act 1963 (supplemental and transitional provision) or section 254 of the M12Local Government Act 1972 (consequential and supplementary provision) or any order made under either of those sections; and the definitions of “local authority” in sections 27 and 45 above shall have effect—E+W

(a)in relation to any time before 1st April 1965, as if they included a reference to the council of a metropolitan borough; and

(b)in relation to any time before 1st April 1974, as if they included references to the council of a county or non-county borough and to the council of an urban or rural district.

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Marginal Citations

7Nothing in this Act shall affect the operation of section 79 of the Food and Drugs Act 1955 (special provisions as to the compensation payable under a local Act where the use of a slaughterhouse is rendered unlawful by the provision of a public slaughterhouse) in relation to any slaughterhouse the use of which was rendered unlawful before 1st January 1974 (the date on which section 5(3) of the Agriculture (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1972 came into force).E+W

Section 47.

SCHEDULE 6E+W Repeals

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Modifications etc. (not altering text)

C14The text of Sch. 6 is in the form in which it was originally enacted: it was not reproduced in Statutes in Force and does not reflect any amendments or repeals which may have been made prior to 1.2.1991.

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