BY TOBY PORTER
Animal rights activists stormed into a new shop to protest at the sale of fur products.
The newly-opened Flannels shop, from the upmarket fashion chain owned by controversial Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley, was targeted for selling fur from rabbits and foxes.
Activists entered the store in Brixton holding placards and chanting slogans such as ‘Animal fur is not fashion – where the hell is your compassion?’
One campaigner using gave a speech by megaphone about the alleged cruelty involved in the fur trade.
Flannels products include a £413 Arctic fox parka jacket and £101 rabbit gilet. The chain also stocks Canada Goose jackets for up to £995.
Activists were escorted out of the Brixton shop by staff. Up to 20 campaigners continued the demonstration outside, holding a banner highlighting the ‘barbarity’ of fur and showing general footage of how animals are abused in the production of some products.
They also held up placards and chanted: ‘Fur trade! Death trade!’ and ‘Blood, blood, blood on your hands.’
A spokeswoman for the Stop Fur At Flannels campaign later called the protest ‘phenomenal’.
Flannels was founded in Cheshire in 1976 by businessman Neil Prosser, who remains managing director.
Sports Direct bought a 51 per cent majority stake in 2012 and increased this to 75 per cent in 2017.
It has nearly 20 stores around the country. Billionaire Ashley – the owner of Newcastle United football club and House of Fraser – was accused by MPs in 2016 of running Sports Direct like a ‘Victorian workhouse’, treating staff ‘without dignity or respect’.
Fur farms were banned in the UK in 2000, but they are still allowed in China and other parts of the world.
Flannels had not provided a comment at the time of going to press.