The government issued a licence for farmers to shoot badgers in West Gloucestershire and are due to launch a cull in West Somerset shortly in an effort to stop the spread of the cattle disease bovine tuberculosis, that is carried by badgers.

But the RSPCA and others have started a ‘Team Badger’ campaign, which urges people not to visit the tourist hot spots where badgers are being killed and to boycott dairy products made in those areas.

The former Queen guitarist, Dr May, launched the latest billboard of a badger at one of London’s busiest road junctions to highlight the issue. He said other celebrities will be speaking out against the ‘indefensible’ cull and that the cull will make bovine TB infection rates worse as sick badgers will move into other areas, further spreading the disease.

May has also set up a petition which already has more than 56,000 signatures. He urged people not to drink milk from areas where badgers are being killed and said he would not visit places where the cull is taking place.

“I would certainly not drink milk that comes at a price of badgers being slaughtered,” he added.

Gavin Grant, chief executive of the RSPCA said: “Local people and local businesses will be furious about the impacts of the cull – particularly in the leisure industry. These areas will be soaked in badgers’ blood. Will people who love the countryside want to go there?”