From Hillgrove Farm to Highgate Farm: the rise and fall of animal rights activism in Britain, 1999-2009?
Room EB4a (under Octagon Room stalls). 3.00-3.50pm
After a sustained campaign lasting two years, the closure of Hillgrove Farm where cats were bred for experimentation, made national news in August 1999. The Animal Rights movement felt confident and as a result new campaigns were launched, the most famous being Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC), which targets Huntingdon Life Sciences, in November 1999.
Nine years later another animal breeder was raided, Highgate Farm near Lincoln, and 128 rabbits rescued. A few months after that, four people were arrested for trespassing there and all were charged with interfering in a contract between a research laboratory and its supplier, s145 of the Serious Organized Crime and Police Act. Three pleaded guilty and two were remanded in custody but when the fourth activist came to trial in May this year, the judge ruled that no offence had taken place!
This workshop will examine animal rights in Britain over the last ten years, asking if state repression and the subsequent decline in morale and support were inevitable and whether the movement has in any way been the architect of its own downfall. We will also discuss to what extent anarchist ideas can help us to understand the situation and find a way forward.
There will many other meetings on a wide range of subjects including:Resisting NETCU, Fighting FIT; Earth First! UK ecological direct action comes of age; Too Many prisons and not enough justice, and many many more. There will also be stalls, films and cabaret, and a creche while Veggies will be outside the venue providing cheap vegan food.
Paul Vegan Anarchist