Police called after animal rights protesters blocked Twycross Zoo
Police were called today (April 16) after it was claimed animal rights protesters blocked families from entering Twycross Zoo over a busy holiday weekend. Members of the Leicester Animal Rights Act and Nottingham Animal Rights groups stood at the entrance to the zoon with banners and placards calling on members of the public to boycott the popular attraction, reports StaffordshireLive.
Some of the banners claimed that zoos were “prison for animals”, while other signs read, “That’s not conservation, that’s cruelty.” Twycross Zoo said it had the ‘highest standards of animal welfare’ and there was nothing to suggest the zoo had been cruel to animals.
A spokesperson for animal rights groups said: “Zoos in the UK hold tens of thousands of animals in captivity. Many suffer in silence, their misery is unseen despite the thousands watching them every day. Zoos that exploit animals can never be ethical.”
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It is one of the busiest days of the year for the zoo which has suffered during the Covid pandemic with bosses saying it lost £5.5million at the time which would have an impact on the conservation work being done there, they told the time.
Members of the protest groups have been contacted for further details, but it is understood the protest ended around 12.30pm.
Twycross Zoo Chief Executive, Dr Sharon Redrobe: said: “In relation to today’s protests at Twycross Zoo, the police were called today because a small group of protesters were preventing access to the zoo for visitors Our mission as a conservation charity that operates a zoo is to educate and inspire people to care about the other species with whom we share our planet, and therefore to save them.
“Twycross Zoo has the highest standards of animal welfare with excellent animal management procedures. Allegations made by protesters about animal welfare practices at Twycross Zoo are completely baseless. .
“As for protests more broadly, I’ve talked about this before. I’m asking people to consider thinking of zoos the same way we think of hospitals. You might not like them, but we we need it.
“As a conservation charity that runs a zoo, we are committed to doing all we can to protect and preserve vulnerable species, and to educate our visitors about the pressing issues facing them and our planet. “Our planet is now facing a sixth extinction crisis and the solutions to this are not black or white. We must do all we can to protect animal species for future generations. Zoos are part of that solution.”