You run, bulls die: Manchester actress turns activist to charge bullrunning with Spanish PETA protest

A Manchester actress swapped makeup for face paint at the weekend as she joined a 100-strong protest against bullrunning ahead of Spain’s famous Running of the Bulls.

Altrincham lass Kate Laycy, 33, took part in the demonstration by wearing the Pamplona event’s famous white-and-red costume – but painted her face white and her eyes black to resemble a ‘death runner’.

The event, which was organised by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and Spanish group AnimaNaturalis, has been held for a number of years in an attempt to get the spectacle of bullfighting and bullrunning banned.

And Kate, who was a finalist in PETA UK’s Sexiest Vegan 2014 competition, told MM she was glad to have taken part in the protest.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” she said, after returning to the UK last night.

“It was really good but it was emotional. We protested in the square where we knew in a few days the bull run was going to take place just for ‘entertainment’ and that those bulls are going to be tortured and killed.

“There were well over 100 people in the protest but there was also a lot of support from people who were clapping and watching, which was great.”

WE HAVE A BEEF WITH YOU: Kate (r) leads the protests against bullfighting

And with the support on her side, Kate believes the tide is turning against Spain’s national obsession with the event.

“People need to realise that it’s not just a bit of fun,” she said

“It can stop and I think it will stop.”

Holding up signs which read ‘you run, bulls die’ in a range of languages and some protestors baring all, they were opposing a tradition which has been running since the 14th century.

However, popularity for the famous festival and bullfighting in general has begun to decrease in recent years as venues have closed and crowd numbers dwindle.

Unknowing tourists still fund the events though and an estimated 250,000 bulls-a-year are currently being killed in fights or festivals across the globe according to the World Animal Protection charity.

The bulls that take part in the famous Pamplona run are used in the arena the next day as part of the festival.

And, as shown in PETA’s video narrated by Spanish music superstar Charo, the animals are subjected to immense pain and suffering.

Bullfights can often last for up to 20 minutes, during which time the animal is speared, stabbed and weakened until a matador attempts to sever the exhausted animal’s spine with a dagger.

MULTILINGUAL MESSAGE: The ‘You Run, Bulls Die’ slogan was translated into many languages

The bull sometimes drowns in its own blood prior to this happening or is dragged away still alive as its broken and bloodied body is taken to slaughter.

Kate believes people’s attitudes are changing and that protests such as this one are making a difference.

“I would definitely like to do it again,” she said.

“Many people have spoken out against bull-fighting and I think a lot of people think it’s bad.

“We need to try and stop tourists from attending as this is how it is being funded, but this is because they think it is just a run and don’t understand that these bulls are basically tortured.”

Images courtesy of PETA with thanks

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