Wild Animals (Circuses)

Part of Backbench Business — [29th Allotted Day] – in the House of Commons at 5:00 pm on 23rd June 2011.

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Photo of Cathy Jamieson Cathy Jamieson Labour, Kilmarnock and Loudoun 5:00 pm, 23rd June 2011

My hon. Friend makes a powerful point. In Edinburgh, Fife and my local authority area in Ayrshire, there was cross-party support for not allowing circuses with wild animals on to council land, but the local authorities I know of, particularly in Scotland, want to take further measures to ensure not only that such circuses are not allowed on their land but that they cannot enter other locations in the council area.

Mention was also made in the opening speech of the Scottish Government’s position. My understanding is that the new Scottish Government are sympathetic to a ban. However, when I questioned the previous Scottish Government last year on their position, they said that they were awaiting the results of the DEFRA consultation.

Securing a vote today and, for once, taking the lead on this issue would not just send a powerful message to England and Wales, but would be helpful to colleagues in the Scottish Parliament who want a ban enacted there.