Jamie Gray, the man accused of causing unnecessary suffering to 125 horses, ponies and donkey will appear in court in December.
The hearing at Bicester Magistrates Court is expected to last for 10 weeks — and finish mid-March.
On 4 January this year, 31 equines were found dead at Gray’s Spindle Farm in Amersham, and 111 other horses, ponies and donkeys were rescued in one of the biggest horse welfare cases on record in the UK.
The case and plight of the equines involved sparked intense media interest.
The case is expected to run from 8-19 December, adjourn for Christmas and start again on 12 January 2009 until early March.
RSPCA deputy head of press Becky Hawkes told H&H: “This is a long hearing for animal cruelty, but we were expecting it because of the large numbers of witnesses being called and evidence that needs to be heard.
“It may conclude earlier, depending on how quickly the evidence is heard.”
The family — James John Gray, Julie Gray, Cordelia Gray and Jodie Gray, of Spindle Farm, Hyde Heath, Amersham — have pleaded not guilty to 12 charges related to section 4 and section 9 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 — which cover causing unnecessary suffering to and failing to meet the needs of a total of 125 equines.