9:50am Friday 5th September 2008
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By Gary Bills-Geddes »
POLICE will have riot police on standby tomorrow (Saturday September 6) as animal rights protestors come to Ledbury at noon for a mass demonstration outside Sequani’s animal-testing lab.
Chief Inspector Shane Hancock said that police had failed to make contact with the organisers, despite appeals in the press.
He added: “Now it’s a case of seeing what turns up.
“There is nothing to indicate that violence will take place or that the protest won’t pass smoothly.”
But police spokesman Peter Butcher confirmed that police support units would be in the area.
These are transit vans, each containing a sergeant and six officers with riot gear.
He said: “We haven’t tooled up for World War III. Whether they’ll be in use from the start, I very much doubt.”
The demonstrators will gather to show support for protestor Sean Kirtley of Malvern, who is currently serving a four-and-a-half year sentence for his part in a campaign against the lab, off the Bromyard Road.
Kirtley launched an appeal in June.