The ‘Great British Circus’ (Big Top Productions), which still uses animals in its shows, will be in Colchester from today (17th July) until Sunday 22nd July. The circus is in a field with an entrance on London Road in Stanway, Colchester, Essex CO3 8PB.
The Captive Animals’ Protection Society (CAPS) says that it is cruel to use animals in circuses; read more at www.captiveanimals.org/our-work/circuses
‘… CAPS maintains its position on the use of animals in circuses on the following grounds:
Ethics: We maintain that forcing any animal to perform for human entertainment is unethical and cannot be justified. Furthermore, we believe that the use of animals in circuses sends a damaging message to the general public, and particularly children and young people, by the implication that animals can be manipulated for our amusement despite the animal gaining no benefit from the practice. The practice implies that the animals’ own lives hold no inherent value in their own right; the use of circus animals therefore have negative educational impact.
Welfare: By virtue of the travelling nature of many circuses, the temporary accommodation for animals, the confined quarters, the training practices and the exposure of animals to unnatural situations during performances, we maintain that animal welfare cannot be guaranteed in circuses. In addition, some species of animal may have the added disadvantage of being kept in an unnatural climate, unnatural social groupings and be prevented from carrying out their natural behaviours as a direct result of being kept by a circus. This is particularly the case with wild, or non-native species of animal …’
Animal Defenders International (ADI) say: ‘… In 2009, ADI released undercover footage of the use of elephants at the Great British Circus and this exposé put wild animals in circuses back on the political agenda. This evidence was presented to the Government and a public consultation on animal circuses followed, in December 2009. The footage can be viewed here …’ – www.ad-international.org/animals_in_entertainment/go.php?id=2466&ssi=10
The British government is currently drafting legislation to ban the use of wild animals in circuses. In 2012, Greece banned the use of all animals in circuses, as has Bolivia, and Paraguay has banned the use of wild animals in circuses – apparently, the national, regional or local governments in at least 30 countries around the world have already banned the use of wild animals or all animals in circuses. In 2011, the MP for Colchester – Sir Bob Russell – asked in the local press for people to not go to the animal circus while it was in the town.
Please do not support animal circuses!
A protest is planned outside the road entrance to the circus in Colchester at 6.15pm on the 20th July and another protest is planned at 3.45pm on the 21st July.