The Animal Justice Project team headed to London on Monday to support the Make Hunting History march which was organised by an alliance of anti-hunt campaign groups. #KeepTheBan
The need for this protest came after the Conservative party released their manifesto on 18th May in which Theresa May made a controversial pledge to allow a free vote in parliament on the hunting ban if she were to win the election in June.
The day started off at Cavendish Square, where speeches were made by the likes of Peter Egan, Dominic Dyer and Bill Oddie. The march then started, with thousands of people walking down Oxford street, which, on a bank holiday, was extremely busy with tourists and shoppers. The march ended at Downing Street where, once everyone had gathered, further speeches were made and many photos for press. Cheering and clapping was encouraged at many points, which was welcomed from all the angry shouting that had been done on the walk.
Many people brought placards that they had made at home, fox masks, costumes, and flags. We were easy, from miles around, to spot. While walking through the streets shouts of ‘no excuse for animal abuse’ and ‘cull the tories, keep the ban’ could be heard through megaphones, only to be repeated back by fellow the campaigners.
In a poll of voters carried out by The Independent, it was revealed that 64 per cent of the British public disagree with the statement that the ban on hunting should be reversed. Since David Cameron brought the Conservatives to power in 2010 there has been many attempts to repeal the hunting act passed by Tony Blair in 2004. This has meant that, on several occasions, protesters gathered outside the houses of parliament in wildlife costumes, holding banners and waving protest flags. On Monday however, this was clearly the largest anti-hunting march in recent history and organisers claimed afterwards that there were around 4,000 attendees.
These sort of mass marches are so vital in the fight for animal rights. It enables our voices, and therefore the voices of the animals, are heard. For organisations like Animal Justice Project, which I represent as Communications Officer, they prove a vital opportunity to link up with similar groups, and meet like-minded activists across the UK. Together we are stronger in this fight.
If nothing else, when you are surrounded by a huge group of people all marching together with such passion for such a good cause, it makes you realise that despite recent events, and all the negativity in the world at the moment, there are still so many people out there doing amazing things for entirely selfless reasons.
Well done to everyone who attended the march on Monday!