Wild Animals (Circuses)

Part of Backbench Business — [29th Allotted Day] – in the House of Commons at 4:33 pm on 23rd June 2011.

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Photo of Nia Griffith Nia Griffith Shadow Minister (Business, Innovation and Skills) 4:33 pm, 23rd June 2011

Absolutely. It is a purely selfish idea that anybody would want to see an animal perform in a circus. As my hon. Friend says, we have moved on from that. It is completely mediaeval to think of going back to the idea that an animal is to be taken round on a chain because nobody in the area or in the country has ever had a chance to see that type of animal. We do not want that any more.

There are many important lessons that we want to teach our young people. They will not learn the fundamental lesson about respect for animals and treating them properly and well if they are taken to a circus to see such antics. Young people have to understand that for them to see such things, animals have to travel and undergo very undesirable practices. Animal welfare is incompatible with the life of a travelling circus.