Landmark Meeting: Mod To Summon Makers Of Faux Fur To Oxfordshire

For Immediate Release:
23 October 2008

Sam Glover 020 7357 9229, ext 229; [email protected]

London – Following last month’s talks with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Europe, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) held a meeting earlier today with several global producers of faux fur. As a result, the Defence Clothing Integrated Project Team (DC IPT) will now undertake further technical consultations before making a decision on whether or not to end the slaughter of Canadian black bears for The Queen’s Guards’ ceremonial hats and switch to faux fur instead.

Among the makers of faux fur invited were Yorkshire Fur Fabrics Ltd, Tissavel SAS (France), Silk & Sable (US), [BODY]Tecture (US), Kaneka (Japan) and Donna Salyers’ Fabulous-Furs (US). The meeting was held at Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) Caversfield in Bicester, Oxfordshire. The DC IPT’s subject matters expert discussed the qualities and properties of real bear fur which would have to be mimicked in the faux-fur caps.

It can take one bear’s entire hide to make just one Guard’s headpiece. The skins come from bears who are killed in Canada and are often shot several times before they die. Some bears escape the hunters and bleed to death. Mother bears are often killed, and their orphaned cubs are left behind to starve.

PETA members wearing bear costumes have dogged members of the Royal family both at home and abroad in hopes of persuading them to urge the MoD to switch to fake fur. In September, PETA promised that if the MoD would halt the bear slaughter, PETA would give all funds currently budgeted for the campaign to the Help for Heroes Fund, which assists limbless soldiers and others wounded in Britain’s current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“MoD have stonewalled us in the past, so we hope that this meeting wasn’t just for show and that massacring bears for ceremonial hats will soon be a thing of the past”, says PETA Europe Director Robbie Le Blanc. “The vast majority of Britons – including many current and former Guards – oppose the use of real fur for any reason.”

For more information, please visit