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Protesters march through Wickham
7:55pm Saturday 20th September 2008 in News
Around 100 animal rights protesters marched through Wickham this afternoon, Saturday September 20.
The group was made up of members from the Stop Wickham Animal Testing group (SWAT) and animal rights activists from all over the country.
They were taking part in the annual march against animal testing at Wickham Laboratories, based in Winchester Road.
Around 60 police were on hand to oversee the peaceful, but loud march, which started in Mill Lane and progressed to the Square for speeches, and then back to Mill Lane through the town.
One person was arrested.
Jeannette McClunan, the SWAT rally organiser from Corhampton, said: "We are very pleased with the turn out. We have got people from all over the country here. I have been doing these demonstrations for around 20 years. I feel that in today's society, there is no need to continue using animals to experiment on. There are many other different methods of testing that don't take anywhere near as long to produce results. Testing on animals is barbaric."
Mrs McClunan's mother, Helen Nelson, from Gosport was also at the march.
She said: "I have been coming to these marches for about 30 years. I object to animals being tested on for products humans are going to use. It causes the animals suffering and there are so many other ways to test these things."
Acting Chief Inspector Darren Murphy, based at Havant, was in charge of policing the march.
He said: "We have made one arrest, there could have been more. In all the event has gone as well as can be expected. There are some points that can be worked on for next year, like how long we allow the protesters to remain in the road and review the conditions we can impose. Having spoken to the organiser of the event, I think she is more open to dialogue than perhaps they have been in the past."