PETA Pressures UK Travel Agency to Drop Running of the Bulls Promotion
File photo of trapped runners during the seventh running of the bulls of the San Fermin festival in Pamplona. / Reuters
Animal rights groups come out strong against any event featuring animals — like Alaska’s Iditarod Great Sled Race — and big companies like Thomas Cook would rather not deal with the stress of an activist campaign for the cost of selling a few trips.
Holiday giant Thomas Cook has stopped advertising the world famous Pamplona “Running of the Bulls” festival on its website after pressure from animal welfare campaigners.
PETA declared victory last night after the package holiday group and Britanny Ferries both agreed to stop promoting the event online.
Campaingers at PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said it was delighted “a growing number of UK travel companies are taking the high road”.
PETA urged both to remove any mention of the festival, claiming all the bulls are taken off to be “tormented and killed” in bullfights.
Thomas Cook business manager Nancy Brock told PETA: “I was very disappointed to learn that [the promotion] had made its way onto any Thomas Cook website.
“I plan to speak with the team leader responsible for that site so we can ensure that everyone knows and understands our stance on animal welfare issues.”
EasyJet removed all references to bullfighting from its websites two years ago. PETA yeseterday added that First Festival Travel would be re-building its website before Christmas to “remove as many references as possible” to bullfighting.
PETA’s success comes just two months after three men were gored in a day in this year’s festival. The idea is to race ahead of and alongside the bulls, released together at the start of a 850-metre course.
The origins of the bull run are said to date back to the 14th century, when men tried to speed up the process of transporting cattle to market by hurrying them along. It eventually became a competition. The festival in Pamplona lasts for seven days and honours Saint Fermin.
Since records began in 1911, 15 people have been killed at the event. Some 200 to 300 are usually injured each year.