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24 Celebs Who Want To Know What Goes On Inside Animal Labs

These celebrities want to lift the lid on secrecy in UK animal laboratories. Each and every one of these 24 celebrities has signed the National Anti-Vivisection Society statement calling for a notorious animal experiment ‘secrecy clause’, Section 24, to be scrapped.

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1. Ricky Gervais

World-class comedian and actor Ricky is extremely vocal when it comes to animal rights, often taking to Twitter to inform his 5.8 million followers of animal causes that are close to his heart – and one thing Ricky is passionate about is ending secret animal suffering.

2. Brian Blessed

“Gordon’s alive!” Larger than life thespian and actor Brian Blessed has had an extensive acting career, encompassing a variety of genres, from Star Wars to Shakespeare and is perhaps best loved as Prince Vultan in '80s cult-classic Flash Gordon. Brian believes “We are the guardian of this planet, and the animals are there for us to protect not to persecute. We must end the terrible suffering that animals endure in the laboratory”.

3. Joanna Lumley

Actress, model, author, TV personality, justice campaigner and animal rights activist – there is little Joanna is not. Best known as Absolutely Fabulous star Patsy Stone, Joanna says, “The public has a right to know what animals are subjected to in the name of research, and the alternatives that could be used to replace them. The secrecy that currently shrouds such tests must end now”.

4. Ann Widdecombe

Former Tory shadow minister Ann twirled through Strictly Come Dancing and straight into our hearts. She was moved to put pen to paper for animals in laboratories to explain why we need to repeal Section 24. Ann wrote "Meaningful reform will protect researchers, animals and science, but we can only achieve this by opening up the animal experiment industry, allowing organisations to help identify duplicate experiments and highlighting where non-animal technology can be used to benefit humans and animals alike."

5. Chris Packham

Naturalist, nature photographer, author, wildlife expert, and BBC Springwatch presenter, Chris is no stranger to speaking out for animals – on the need for openness in animal research, Chris says, “animal experiments have been carried out in the dark for too long. I support the NAVS campaign to end secret suffering in UK laboratories.”

6. Twiggy

The world’s first supermodel and our favourite fashion icon, Twiggy is an ardent supporter of repealing the UK’s notorious animal testing secrecy clause.

"While animals continue to unnecessarily languish in laboratories, the very least we can do is to give them a voice. That’s why I’m supporting the NAVS campaign for greater transparency in animal research laboratories and urge the government to repeal Section 24.”

7. Eddie Izzard

Multi-talented stand-up comedian, actor, writer and ultra-marathon runner Eddie certainly knows how to make us laugh, but the Oceans Twelve and Thirteen star finds nothing funny about the suffering of animals in UK labs, behind closed doors.

8. Jenny Seagrove

Jenny is a British actress whose career has spanned theatre, film and television, and is a strong advocate of animal rights - she has campaigned for years to end animal testing and has even set up her own horse sanctuary. Talking of the need to fund non-animal methods such as mico-dosing, Jenny says “If only the UK funded more of the equipment that is needed… researchers could analyse the effects of minuscule amounts of experimental drugs on humans instead of animals in a much safer way”.

9. Martin Shaw

TV favourite Martin Shaw is one of England's most popular actors. He starred alongside fellow animal-lover Jenny Seagrove in Judge John Deed and has also had roles in The Professionals, The Chief, and Inspector George Gently. Martin is supporting the NAVS campaign to repeal Section 24.

10. Alexei Sayle

Liverpudlian comedian, author and presenter Alexei has a particular soft spot for monkeys –"I abhor all cruelty to animals but ill-treatment of primates fills me with a special horror. They are so obviously related to us that we can be in no doubt that they can know fear, pain and suffering."

11. Julian Clary

Flamboyant stand-up comedian Julian Clary is one of Britain's best loved comedians, and confesses to being a huge animal lover. Julian wants the public to be able to know the truth about what happens to animals in research, which is why he is campaigning to repeal Section 24.

12. Lynsey De Paul

Lynsey’s long music career is sparkling with hit singles. Singer-songwriter Lynsey has always had a strong passion for animal welfare, which is why she is demanding the Government repeals Section 24. “Neither science nor mankind’s advancement is reliant on or furthered by cruelty. History has proven that there are alternative means of scientific research and these methods must be our first and, in fact, our only choice. Inhumanity for the sake of humanity is unacceptable and abhorrent.”

13. Meg Matthews

Designer, socialite and former wife of legendary rocker Noel Gallagher, Meg Mathews has stood as a candidate for the Animal Welfare Party and launched a range of eco and animal-friendly handbags. Meg is certainly standing up for the millions of animals suffering across the UK by supporting the repeal of Section 24.

14. Peter Egan

This Downton Abbey star is one compassionate TV veteran who strongly opposes lab animal cruelty. Peter is an outspoken advocate for more openness about animal experiments and has previously spoken out against plans to build a breeding facility to supply beagles for experiments. "I am completely opposed to vivisection on dogs and other animals on science and welfare grounds. Strapping dogs into harnesses and pumping them full of chemicals is poor science and a terrible reflection of a nation which likes to think of itself full of animal lovers."

15. Peter Tatchell

Social justice campaigner, Peter Tatchell, has been fighting for human rights, democracy, LGBT freedom and global justice since the 60s. But his compassion doesn’t stop with humans – Peter is fighting to expose the unjustified secret suffering of millions of laboratory animals across Britain.

“For me, cruelty is barbarism, whether it is inflicted on humans or on other species. The campaigns for animal rights and human rights share the same fundamental aim: a kinder, gentler world without oppression and suffering, based on care and compassion.”

16. Paul O’ Grady MBE

Not only is he one of the biggest names in TV entertainment, Paul O'Grady is also one of the biggest animal lovers out there. Aside from his award winning chat show, Paul has also presented ITV's 'For the Love of Dogs', and recently 'Paul O'Grady's Animal Orphans'. His love of animals is not limited to just dogs though; Paul is calling for Section 24 to be removed to benefit all animals suffering in silence in laboratories.

17. Sadie Frost

An actress, style icon, and now business woman - Sadie runs her own fashion label Frost French and her own film production company – Blonde to Black Pictures. Sadie is a passionate vegetarian and animal rights activist who is championing the campaign to stop the secrecy to help the 4 million animals tested on in UK laboratories each year.

18. Samantha Womack

You wouldn’t want to mess with Ronnie Mitchell, her EastEnders alter ego and Samantha certainly doesn’t mess around when it comes to animal experiments either – she signed a giant postcard to the Prime Minister calling for the repeal of Section 24.

19. Wendy Turner-Webster

Journalist and TV presenter, Wendy is perhaps best known for hosting Channel Fours TV’s hit series Pet Rescue for seven years. She is also a committed animal rights campaigner, who earlier this year campaigned against Air France’s policy of transporting monkeys to laboratories. “The trade in monkeys for experiments is incredibly cruel, and extremely outdated.”

20. Gemma Atkinson

Former Hollyoaks beauty and glamour model, Gemma now graces our screens as Tamzin Bayle in Casualty and is happy to speak out for those who can't by urging the government to be more open about animal experiments.

21. Colin Baker

Who's your favourite Doctor Who? Ours is Colin, the 6th Doctor. The former time lord is also an animal rights activist who is demanding the Government repeal Section 24. If only his sonic screwdriver could sort the problem!

22. Anette Crosbie

Annette Crosbie, OBE, is a Scottish actress, perhaps best-loved as “Margaret Meldrew” in acclaimed BBC series One Foot in the Grave. Annette is a staunch supporter of repealing Section 24; "That animals suffer in laboratories at all is dreadful, but the fact that this suffering is hidden from public view, and subject to such secrecy, is unforgiveable”.

23. Prunella Scales

Best known as Basil Fawlty's wife Sybil in the British comedy Faulty Towers, Prunella was one of the first to sign her name on a letter to the Prime Minister calling for an end to the blanket secrecy in animal research.

24. Benjamin Zephaniah

Dub poet and Rastafarian, Benjamin Zephaniah fights animal abuse with poetry. Proudly vegan, Benjamin joined the NAVS, fellow celebrities and politicians last year in calling on the Prime Minister to end secrecy in animal research. Here’s a photo from the archives of him performing on a past World Day for Laboratory Animals, held on April 24th each year.

YOU!

Now it's your turn to speak out for animals in laboratories! Join these celebrities and help end secrecy in animal experiments. Respond to the Government's consultation on or before Friday 13 June using the NAVS answer guide. Too late? You can find out more about the campaign and how you can help at NAVS.org.uk

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