VIDEO: Police clash with circus protesters on Hampstead Heath

PUBLISHED: 06:45 03 October 2016

Officers were called to the demonstration outside Zippos Circus on Friday. Picture: Ron Vester

Officers were called to the demonstration outside Zippos Circus on Friday. Picture: Ron Vester


Video footage shows the moment officers clashed with protesters outside Zippos Circus on Hampstead Heath on Friday evening.

The animal rights campaigners gathered on Friday and over the weekend to call for a ban on animals being used in its performances. They intend to carry on demonstrating until the circus leaves on Tuesday.

The confrontation happened on Friday when Heath Constabulary officers were called to protesters scrawling chalk slogans on the pavement in East Heath Road and waving banners with the slogans: “Did you enjoy the circus, the animals didn’t” and “Just say ‘No’ - please don’t go to Zippos.

Footage of the incident was captured on a video which has been uploaded to YouTube by a user named Earthling Ed.

The protest was organised by animal rights organisations Surge and Vegan Action who set up a Facebook page.

The demonstrators chalked slogans on the ground. Picture: Ron VesterThe demonstrators chalked slogans on the ground. Picture: Ron Vester

They say: “Zippos is one of the last remaining circus’s that continues to profit from animal cruelty for entertainment.”

“We are asking people to take action against them, make a poster or take some leaflets and talk to people attending the shows about the cruel reality of animals in circuses. We also have an online action for anyone who can’t attend in person which is to contact Camden Council and ask that they put a ban on circuses that use animals.

“Whether it be the long journeys, brutal training regimes or constant confinement, animals have no place in the circus. This is a never ending living nightmare for them.

The groups also encouraged people to write to the City of London Corporation banning Zippos on the Heath.

A banner held by protesters. Picture: Ron VesterA banner held by protesters. Picture: Ron Vester

Photographer Ron Vester, who took these photos and witnessed the confrontation with police on Friday night, said: “There was a fairly aggressive meeting with Surge and the Constabulary on Friday night. Surge were provoking the Heath police and no one seemed to know what to do.”

The Heath Constabulary were unavailable for comment over the weekend.

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

Yesterday, 14:49

Transport for London is set to review safety issues at an accident blackspot in Falloden Way,

Yesterday, 13:45

Circus-goers on Hampstead Heath got a shock today when walking down from the Heath they were confronted with a water main shooting water high into the air on the corner of Pilgrim’s Lane and Willow Road in Hampstead.

Yesterday, 10:53

Camden’s youngsters were in the spotlight at the Shaw Theatre for an evening celebrating the borough’s talent.

Mon, 15:35

Wage cuts for nurses covering sick leave and other increases in demand at Hampstead’s Royal Free Hospital have been postponed after workers threatened to cancel shifts en masse.

Mon, 15:00

Brexit uncertainty is one reason for a slowdown in Camden house prices, said a leading estate agent after new data showed that property values in the borough fell 0.8 per cent in August and 2.1pc in the last 12 months.

Mon, 14:05

Tickets for a public meeting into the future of the Phoenix Cinema have sold out within days of it being announced.

Mon, 13:57

Mitzvah Day volunteers from Hampstead were among those taking part in Sewa Day – a Hindu day of community action – in Kingsbury, Brent this weekend.

Mon, 10:29

As part of National Hate Crime Awareness Week, Haringey Police have been engaging with the community to raise awareness of the importance of reporting abuse and discrimination.


Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now