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Tessuti removes animal fur clothes from Ipswich high street store, protesters claim

PUBLISHED: 09:29 25 January 2018 | UPDATED: 13:04 25 January 2018

Anti-fur campaigner Victoria Petchey outside Tessuti in Ipswich's high street. Picture: MATT STOTT

Anti-fur campaigner Victoria Petchey outside Tessuti in Ipswich's high street. Picture: MATT STOTT

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Animal rights campaigners have claimed victory after an Ipswich high street clothing store removed animal fur products following weeks of protests.

Campaigners outside Tessuti in Ipswich's high street. Picture: VICTORIA PETCHEYCampaigners outside Tessuti in Ipswich's high street. Picture: VICTORIA PETCHEY

The manager of Tessuti, based in Westgate Street and owned by JD Sports, stunned campaigners on Saturday morning by announcing all animal fur-based products were being removed from the store, according to lead protester Victoria Petchey.

The 32-year-old, of Ipswich, started protesting outside the store with friends and social media supporters in December.

Tessuti, which has over 30 chains nationwide, sells a range of brands which incorporate animal fur into their designs, including Canada Goose, a brand that has gained notoriety in London, and other clothes made from coyote and raccoons.

Miss Petchey commended the Ipswich store for taking action by removing the store-front mannequins and items of clothing which displayed the animal fur, but feared they were just being moved to another store.

She said: “I think it’s great that they’ve now removed all of the fur-based products from their store. It shows they have the ability to change and take down these cruel, horrible fashion items – or what they see as fashion items. You do not need to wear a dead animal around your neck. It’s just disgusting. The way they actually get the animals is cruel. Coyotes in Canada are trapped in steel traps in the wild for up to three days before somebody comes along and shoots them in the head or beats it to death.

“There are so many different alternatives but there has been consumer demand through celebrities wearing it, like Kanye West and Justine Bieber, by wearing these chinchillas, foxes, and rabbits. It glamorises the industry. But it shouldn’t be. These animals are literally killed for what they see as fashion.”

Animal rights organisation PETA slammed Justin Bieber for wearing a real fur coat in December 2016. Two months later, Kanye West was criticised for including fur coats and accessories in a fashion collection.

Miss Petchey added: “They need to go cruelty free. I think they’re wearing it for status. I think it makes them look vile. It just supports a very cruel industry.

JD Sports declined to comment. A spokesman in December said they ensure suppliers comply with their ethical values and customer concerns are always considered.

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