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Bristol Council Bans Funfairs From Giving Goldfish Away As Prizes

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Bristol Council Bans Funfairs From Giving Goldfish Away As Prizes

Funfairs in the English city of Bristol have been banned from giving out live goldfish as prizes because it has been deemed to be cruel.

Of course, getting a goldfish in a plastic bag has been a staple of funfair culture for many years, but when you actually think of it, perhaps they've got a case about it being pretty unfair on the animals.

Apparently, many of the goldfish 'die within hours' of being given away, and now Bristol has had enough of the practice.

This comes after a campaign from the RSPCA argued that giving live creatures away as trophies 'disrespects and exploits species', according to Metro.


Furthermore, there are other reasons not to give out goldfish, because many of the homes that they are headed for 'are not adequately prepared to meet their welfare needs'.

Many goldfish die 'within hours'. Credit: Pexels
Many goldfish die 'within hours'. Credit: Pexels

And Bristol isn't the only place to outlaw this sort of thing.

It's been illegal to give away live animals as prizes in Scotland for a while now, but it remains in the hands of local authorities across the rest of the UK.


The proposal was brought before Bristol City Council and mayor Marvin Rees by Conservative Councillor Jonathan Hucker at a meeting on Tuesday.

He explained how many of the fish handed out die as a result of shock or mistreatment within hours or days of getting to their new homes.

He said: "The mayor may not have been made aware of this national campaign, but I am sure he will agree with me that this commercial practice is totally unacceptable in our more enlightened age.

"The use of live animals as trophies disrespects and exploits, species as well as being extremely harmful for their welfare.


"We are fortunate to live in far more enlightened times. It is certainly no 'fun at the fair' for these captive creatures."

It's up to the UK's local authorities whether they choose to ban live animal prizes. Credit: Pexels
It's up to the UK's local authorities whether they choose to ban live animal prizes. Credit: Pexels

For his part, Mayor Rees said that he 'fully supports' the ban, and said that he'll 'ask the events team to ensure the contract is updated to clearly exclude live animals as prizes.'

Bristol City Council already has a ban on any form of entertainment that involves live animals, meaning that performing circuses are out of the question, too.


The RSPCA has been running a campaign called Pets as Prizes, which aims to raise awareness of the suffering of animals who are arbitrarily given away.

They say that they regularly receive calls relating to animals that have been given out as prizes, especially goldfish.

Well, they won't be getting any more calls from Bristol, hopefully.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: UK News, Fish, England, Bristol, UK Entertainment, Animals

Tom Wood
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