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Mother`s Day Street Theatre in Birmingham

Midlands Vegan Campaigns | 22.03.2008 21:20 | Animal Liberation | Birmingham

On Saturday 1st March, the day before Mother`s Day, 12 members/supporters of Midlands Vegan Campaigns staged some hilarious, jaw-dropping street theatre and leafletting in Birmingham City Centre. We grabbed the attention of thousands of people, before revealing the shocking cruelty that mother animals in the farming industry are subjected to. The event formed part of the Viva! Day of Action.

Watch our movie about the event

Street theatre can be a light hearted and comical form of protest. At this event, it proved to be an effective means of bringing the very serious issue of animal cruelty to the attention of the general public.

The day was split into 2 parts, but the theme for both was mother animals and how they are abused and exploited by the farming industry. First we focused on the plight of the modern intensive dairy cow and secondly, we turned our attention to pigs caged in farrowing crates.

Britain`s Hardest Working Mother - the Dairy Cow

The modern intensive dairy cow suffers physical & emotional torture to provide humans with milk. She`s pregnant for nine months a year; produces gallons of milk at the same time; has her new-born babies taken from her... and it happens year after year. No wonder she`s exhausted, hungry, emaciated and depressed. She is Britain`s Hardest Working Mother! Read more about her suffering.

The general public are largely unaware of the misery endured by dairy cows and their calves. In Birmingham, we aimed to spread awareness to the masses. As people spent their money on flowers, gifts and cards for their mothers, we grabbed their attention with some hilarious, jaw-dropping street theatre.

Two members of MVC donned a dressing gown, apron, rubber gloves and cow masks, and set about cleaning New Street!!! As thousands of shoppers looked on in disbelief, the street was hoovered, swept and mopped!! Street signs, trees and telephone boxes were spruced up with a `feather` duster!! Like dairy cows, these `hard working mothers` were exhausted, but they continued their numerous tasks without a break. Ten other members of MVC handed out leaflets which revealed the shocking truth about dairy cows, and urged people to ditch dairy.

Imprisoned for Being a Mother - the Farrowing Pig

The farrowing crate is one of factory farming`s most shocking secrets. Hundreds of thousands of pregnant pigs - breeding sows - are locked into these tiny cages a week before they give birth and remain imprisoned there for 35 long days, every 5 months for their whole life. They struggle to stand up and lie down and can do nothing but stare at a blank wall and suckle their hungry piglets. Read more about the suffering of pigs.

One member of MVC swapped the cow mask for a pig mask and climbed inside a `farrowing crate`. And of course, the breeding sow would not have been complete without her piglet - a cuddly toy pig wearing a nappy!! The caring mother cradled her baby inside the cage, whilst thousands of people streamed past. Once again, the general public were keen to learn what the stunt was all about and many people crowded round for a closer look.

During 3 hours of hilarious street theatre, approx 2,000 leaflets were handed out. Many thousands of people were alerted to animal suffering thanks to the posters on display. It was an extremely effective day. We would like to thank Viva! for all the posters and leaflets used.

We have produced a 6 minute movie which combines footage/photos from the event with some basic shocking facts. You can watch the movie via You Tube here.

More information about the issues can be found on the Viva! websites, and

If you would like to help raise awareness of animal cruelty and all the benefits of veganism, why not get active with MVC! If street theatre & leafletting doesn`t appeal to you, why not help out with stalls or food fairs? Read more on our campaigns page

Midlands Vegan Campaigns
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Hide the following 2 comments

Nice work

23.03.2008 14:44

Not usually a supporter of Animal Rights demo's as they tend to really irritate me. But well done to the midlands lot. "Britains hardest working mother" really got me thinking. I mean it. (I saw you at the demo).Have started going vegan since the demo. As a working class anarcho-male brought up on bangers trust me you had yuour work cut out.

Thanks again for this and look forward to seeing you lot around alot more.

Usually not a supporter


23.03.2008 18:39

Bringing the suffering to the heart if Brum. Keep it up. Educate to devastate!

Towards the death of dairy