Animal rights comes in from the cold

Posted on the 5th April 1998

A host of public figures ranging from DJ Chris Evans to Daily Mail proprietor Lord Rothermere have declared their support for a major new initiative by pressure group Animal Aid, aimed at producing a new, fairer deal for animals.

The campaign, called Animal Pride, is launched on June 2 with an art show at a top London gallery in the heart of Smithfield meat market that was formerly a slaughterhouse. Among the art works on display will be two signed photographs by the late, lamented Linda McCartney, who worked with such dedication for the cause of animal rights over many years. Leading animal advocates and animal-friendly actors, parliamentarians and writers will be invited to the launch.

The Pride show will be open to the public free of charge from June 3 for 10 days. A brand new Animal Pride film will be launched along with the opening of the art show. It features interviews with Lord Rothermere, as well as Jilly Cooper, Brian Sewell, Uri Geller, Tony Banks and Spike Milligan. Spike will be giving Animal Aid campaigners a half hour performance of his animal poems and stories at a special Animal Pride party later in June.

Said Animal Aid Director Andrew Tyler:

“In every social group and across the age range, people are looking for ways to lead lives without causing needless animal suffering. The transformation in attitude now taking place is of historic proportions.

“But an artificial barrier has been erected between campaigners for animal rights and the millions of compassionate people in this country. Animal Pride can be the bridge. Through our new campaign, animal rights is coming in from the cold.”

Also launched on June 2 will be a new interactive CD ROM and a fresh document explaining Animal Pride and redefining animal rights for the new millennium.

Other Animal Pride events planned for 1998 include a nationwide educational tour and a series of award presentations.

The Animal Pride Declaration states:

“I believe all animals have the right to a life free from cruelty and abuse.”

Already it has been signed by, among others, Danny Baker, Dannii, Chris Evans, Harry Hill, Chrissie Hynde, Crispian Mills, Ocean Colour Scene, Peter Gabriel, Sally Gunnell, Trevor Nunn, Sir Cliff Richard, Linda Robson, Martin Shaw and Benjamin Zephaniah, as well as a host of MPs including Jackie Ballard, Tony Benn and Sir Teddy Taylor.

Support for the Animal Pride campaign and accompanying Declaration is coming in from leading animal protection groups around the world.

Andrew Tyler explained the twofold purpose of Animal Pride:

“Animal Pride aims to encourage a more positive view of animals – away from seeing them simply as victims, pests or predators, and towards an appreciation of their often extraordinary qualities.

“The campaign will also be inclusive of the general public. Animal rights has too often been seen as a fringe, even lunatic, preoccupation, whereas its central aims – to increase the circle of compassion and justice to embrace all living creatures – is a wholly positive ambition.”

Notes to Editors

  • More information: Andrew Tyler, Becky Smith, Mary Shephard on 01732 364546.
  • Animal Pride is launched with a media and celebrity reception on the afternoon of June 2 at the Slaughterhouse Gallery, 63 Charterhouse Street, London EC1. The show opens to the public the following day. Public opening times are: 11am to 6pm, Monday to Saturday inclusive.
  • Contributions include works by Linda McCartney, David Shepherd, sculptor Nicky Hicks, graphic artist Sue Coe, Ray Richardson, Sandra Baxter and Robin Grierson, as well as fabulous images by 17 winners of the 1997 BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. State-of-the-art lights and other special effects are provided by Utopium (clients include The Spice Girls).
  • Colour transparencies of some of the Slaughterhouse Gallery show artworks available on request. They include winners of BBC Wildlife magazine’s 1997 Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition and photographs by Linda McCartney and Brian Moody.

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