Animal rights group reveals university lab builders' secret address
By Rosie Murray-West
May 31, 2006
Animal rights protesters have discovered the secret location of builders working on the construction of a new Oxford University laboratory, it was claimed last night.
Speak, a group that says it uses only legal means to protest against vivisection, will demonstrate outside the men's quarters in a Cotswolds village on Saturday.
The plans by the university to keep secret the workers' location has been foiled," it said. "Once again we have the university on the run; now is the time to press home our advantage."
Robert Cogswell, who heads Speak, said it would not be breaching an injunction the university had taken out against protesters last week because it would stay 100 yards from residential blocks.
But as it posted the address on a website, the quarters could become the target of violent protests.
The £20 million laboratory is being built in South Parks Road and will house some animals for research. The violent Animal Liberation Front has said it should be the focus for all activism.
Construction is carried out behind high hoardings and the builders wear balaclavas. To try to hide where the builders are staying, the injunction forbids anyone from following vehicles ferrying contractors to the site.
Thames Valley police said they were happy with the security arrangements for the Speak protest and a simultaneous Oxford march of the pro-vivisection group Pro-Test.
It emerged yesterday that the singer Morrissey, a passionate anti-vivisectionist, had warned workers at the laboratory site: "We'll get you."
During a concert at the New Theatre, Oxford, on Thursday he branded the university "the shame of England" for allowing the laboratory to go ahead.
In an interview with the fanzine True to You this year, he said he supported "the efforts of the animal rights militia". He added that he understood "why fur-farmers and so-called laboratory scientists are repaid with violence - it is because they deal in violence themselves and it is the only language they understand".
Thames Valley police said they were not investigating the singer's comments because there was "no reasonable prospect of getting anything out of it in terms of a conviction".
An Oxford University spokesman said the singer had a right to express his opinions "within the law".
But she added: "We would be concerned if individuals were actively encouraging direct intimidation or action against anyone involved in legitimate scientific research or other lawful activities connected with the university."
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