A proposed badger cull in Derbyshire will not go ahead this year, the Government has announced this afternoon.
The news comes after nearly 5,000 people signed a Derbyshire Wildlife Trust petition calling for the shelving of the planned cull - which the Government was considering to tackle the spread of bovine tuberculosis in cattle.
Dr Jo Smith, chief executive of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust, said: "We are delighted that together we have successfully fought off a badger cull in the area this year.
"We thank all our supporters, badger groups, partners and everyone who signed our petition calling on the Government to stop a Derbyshire cull.
"We will continue to expand our badger vaccination programme to ensure that Derbyshire's badgers remain healthy and safe from the cull and we'll use our findings to better inform the Government's strategy for managing bovine tuberculosis .
"We believe that the badger cull doesn't work and is scientifically unsound.
"Badger vaccination and other measures, including regulations and restrictions on cattle movements as well as the development of cattle vaccine, are the best approach for the farming industry and our wildlife.
"Please help us vaccinate more badgers and prove to the Government that they need to stop the cull everywhere, not just here in Derbyshire - visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/helpbadgers."
A Government spokesperson said: "The government has decided the proposed badger cull in Derbyshire should not be licensed this year while further consideration is given to how best to manage the coexistence of vaccination projects and badger control projects."