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Brighton Journal | 25th May 2020

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Petition to stop Zippos circus tour performing in Brighton and Hove divides residents

Petition to stop Zippos circus tour performing in Brighton and Hove divides residents
Hannah Midgley
  • On 13th October 2018

An online petition launched to prevent Zippos circus from coming to Brighton and Hove has divided residents on whether the animals should be made to perform.


Piotr Glodowski, an independent animal rights campaigner, launched the petition on 5 October to encourage the council to revoke any proposed or confirmed licence for the circus to perform in the city as part of their tour.


The petition has now surpassed 1,000 signatures, but social media users have debated the ethics of using animals, such as horses and budgies, for people’s own amusement.


Speaking to Brighton Journal, Mr Glodowski said: “It’s proving to be quite a divisive topic, but [myself and other campaigners] are confident that the majority of Brighton and Hove’s residents do not feel it is right to exploit animals for entertainment.”


“We’ve been invited by the council to present our case in January, when they are due to make their decision. We hope that by then we’ll have enough signatures to send a strong message to the council that animal circuses are not welcome here.”


Many people took to Facebook to share their standpoint, some claiming the petition was “badly worded” and that the animals are “looked after so well” by the circus.


Others showed support for the circus ban, stating “we aren’t in 1800s Victorian times anymore”, and some thanked Mr Glodowski for bringing the issue to public attention.


Mr Glodowski made it clear he has no problems with Zippos Circus returning to Brighton and Hove, provided they do not use animals in their performance.


Mr Glodowski’s petition says: “Their use of domestic animals, including horses and budgies is not necessary, and while Zippos claim they follow animal welfare rules and regulations, the fact remains that these animals are made to perform, and carry out tasks that are unnatural.”


Brighton Journal approached Zippos Circus for comment, who released the following statement:


A spokesperson for Zippos Circus, said: “Zippos Circus, voted Britain’s Best Circus, is supported by tens of thousands of residents and visitors from Brighton and beyond every year it is staged on Hove Lawns in Brighton.


“The accusations in the petition are false and based on fabricated imaginings of obsessive and deluded individuals. 


“Zippos Circus abides by all the very strict UK animal legislation and inspections and ensures their animal husbandry is of the highest standard, as confirmed by both central and local Government animal welfare experts and independent vets.”


Zippos Circus has visited Brighton and Hove every year for the past twenty years.


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