Animal Aid brings Grand National protests to Liverpool and London

Posted on the 8th April 2011

To mark Horse Racing Awareness Week, national campaign group Animal Aid has posted a street billboard in Liverpool city centre that reveals the lethal reality of the world-famous Aintree Grand National meeting.

The billboard – on Ranelagh Street, close to Liverpool Central station – features a stark image of a fallen horse and the words:
National Disgrace
31 horses killed at the 3-day Aintree meeting 2000-2010
Don’t Bet on the Grand National

The Grand National itself is a deliberately punishing and hazardous event. Of the forty horses who usually take part, only one third are likely to finish. Last year, five horses perished at the three-day meeting, and five were also killed in 2009. Animal Aid’s experience is that the public, including veteran punters, are invariably shocked when they discover just how often horses die at Aintree.

Horse Racing Awareness Week runs from 3-9 April and supporters of Animal Aid will take their message to the streets, asking Grand National punters to withhold their betting money and attendance fees.

A mass protest is due to take place at the gates of the Aintree Racecourse on the day of the Grand National race (9 April). If you would like to join the protest, please contact Fiona with your name and contact phone number by email or telephone 01732 364546.

A simultaneous London-based protest to highlight the BBC’s rose-tinted coverage of the event will take place on 9 April outside the BBC Centre at White City. Meet from 11.30pm until around 2pm at the BBC, Wood Lane, London W12 7TR.


  • Animal Aid’s Horse Racing Awareness Week began on Sunday 3 April and reaches its climax on the day of the notorious Grand National race, on 9 April.
  • A dedicated website ( has been specially created to tie-in with the Liverpool City centre billboard, and visitors can view our powerful 90-second viral film, which shows the reality of deaths on British racecourses.
  • Of the approximately18,000 horses who have been bred annually in recent years by the closely related British and Irish racing industries, only around 40 per cent go on to race. Many of the ‘low quality’ newborns are destroyed, while those who do enter racing suffer a high level of fatal injuries and stress-related illnesses, such as gastric ulcers and bleeding lungs. Around 7,500 thoroughbreds have been leaving British racing each year, yet very few go on to a sanctuary or adoptive home.

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