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Pets as prizes banned in Babergh and Mid Suffolk

Posted by on 6 September 2023 | Comments

The giving of live animals as prizes will be banned on land owned by Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils.

The move, which is in support of an RSPCA campaign, has been agreed by both councils’ cabinets at meetings this week.

The animal charity says it regularly receives calls nationwide about the issue, in particular cases of goldfish held in plastic bags for long durations before being given away at fairs.

Babergh and Mid Suffolk will now impose an outright ban on giving any animals as prizes on all council-owned or operated land and properties.

Cllr John Ward, Babergh’s cabinet member for finance, assets and investments, said:

"Taking this action sends a clear message that these outdated practices are not welcome in our communities. While such incidents may be less common than in the past, we want to see them stopped altogether.”

The Animal Welfare Act only prevents live animals being given as prizes to unaccompanied children.

Cllr Rachel Eburne, Mid Suffolk’s cabinet member for finance and resources, said:

"We don’t believe the current legislation goes far enough, and while this measure we’ve taken only affects council land, we want it to set an example to others to take the same approach.”