MPs to Debate the Use of Bearskins for Queen’s Guard Caps After Over 100,000 People Sign Petition

MPs to Debate the Use of Bearskins for Queen’s Guard Caps After Over 100,000 People Sign Petition

London – On 11 July, members of Parliament will debate replacing the bearskins used for the Queen’s Guard’s caps with faux fur after a petition – launched by Britain’s Got Talent judge Alesha Dixon in support of PETA’s campaign – hit over 100,000 signatures. It was co-sponsored by Virginia Lewis-Jones, the daughter of the late Dame Vera Lynn – fondly known as “the Forces’ Sweetheart” – and former soldier Andy Knott MBE, chief executive of animal welfare charity League Against Cruel Sports.

The parliamentary debate follows the unveiling of the world’s first faux bear fur – created by PETA and luxury faux furrier ECOPEL – which looks and performs exactly like the bearskin used to make the Queen’s Guard’s caps. The faux fur fabric meets all the Ministry of Defence (MoD) requirements: it matches the exact length of real bear fur, is 100% waterproof, and performs similarly in water shedding and compression tests. It even outperforms bear fur in drying rate testing. The ministry still disingenuously claims that no suitable non-animal alternative is available.

“Thanks to PETA and the animal-loving British public, bears will finally have their day in Parliament,” says PETA Senior Campaigns Manager Kate Werner. “The MoD has always maintained that its support of the slaughter of Canadian black bears would end as soon as a suitable alternative was available. That day has now come, and it’s high time for the new faux fur cap to be quick-marched into service.”

A recent report from a fabric technologist with 25 years of experience confirmed that the ECOPEL faux bear fur performed equally well or outdid real bear fur in laboratory testing against the five requirements set out by the MoD. And an opinion poll by Populus – The Times’ official pollster – shows that 75% of the UK public thinks using taxpayer money for the caps is a poor use of public funds.

The MoD claims that the fur is sourced from bears who are killed as part of Canadian government “culls”, but PETA has found no evidence that any culls of this sort exist in any province or territory of Canada. Hunters looking for sick “trophies” obtain permits to bait and kill bears, whose fur is then sold to auction houses. It takes the skin of at least one bear to make a single cap. Some bears are shot several times before they die, and some escape only to bleed to death. Nursing mothers are among those killed and leave behind cubs who starve without them.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear” – opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit or follow the group on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.


Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327; [email protected]