Farmer trampled by own cows: 'I'll be back'

A FARMER who was hospitalised after being trampled by a herd of cows has said he will be back in action as soon as doctors allow him.

Elliot Furniss

A FARMER who was hospitalised after being trampled by a herd of cows has said he will be back in action as soon as doctors allow him.

Roger Jones suffered a punctured lung, crushed ribcage, cracked shoulder blade and severe bruising to his head after he was knocked to the ground by the cows at his farm in Thorndon, near Eye.

Mr Jones, who recently turned 70, was taken by air ambulance to the Norwich and Norfolk Hospital after the incident on Tuesday afternoon but said he was determined to get back on to his farm soon.

He said he had simply been in “the wrong place at the wrong time” when the cows, which were making their way into a large shed, became spooked.

Mr Jones and his assistant on the farm, Gillian Stokes, had been bringing the 36-strong herd together in order to select a batch of about eight cows that were ready for slaughter when the drama unfolded

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He said: “They were waiting for the abattoir but they nearly sent me to the abattoir.

“This is farming how it used to be. They were coming up to be sorted. They were all going to the yard through the passage and basically I was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

“(The cows at the front of the herd) turned around and wanted to go back and the ones at the back decided to go on - there was a traffic jam of bullocks. I didn't see the situation until it was too late.

“They didn't know what they were doing - they don't know their own strength. I'm a very experienced farmer. I have been farming cows and herds for nearly 50 years.”

Mr Jones, who farmed in Devon for four decades before moving to the Suffolk farm formerly ran by his father six years ago, said he had nothing but praise for the medical staff that had been looking after him.

He said: “I always tell her (Gillian) off and say 'you can't have your mobile phone with you all the time' - but when it came to it, it was very handy.

“She scrambled everybody; she told them it was pretty serious. The emergency services were fantastic and the care here has been terrific.

“I didn't think it would be the end of my farming career. I was just unfortunate.”

Mr Jones's wife Rosemary said she had been overwhelmed with messages of support and offers of help from members of the Suffolk farming community since her husband's accident.

She said: “I must have had over 100 messages and a pile of letters - people have been ringing up offering to help. They are very supportive in Thorndon.

“It's very reassuring that the camaraderie of the villages is still there. We're just very lucky - it's a miracle he's alive.”