Today (Monday 30th April) the Bristol week of may day actions got under way as just over a dozen activists visited two AXA offices in the city to protest the company’s involvement in the cruel vivisection industry.
AXA may have previously dropped their shares in Huntingdon Life Sciences, but through their continued investment in corrupt pharmacutical company AstraZeneca they are still pouring money into barbaric animal experimentation carried out at HLS.
First up was the AXA Wealth office block at Marlborough House, Marlborough Street. Before we had even began our protest it was clear that a few cages had been rattled; as we gathered around the corner police officers took photographs of people who they thought were going to be involved and upon arrival the security locked the front doors. We immediately began using leaflets, placards and megaphones to bring AXA’s dirty dealings to the public attention. It wasn’t long before the real fun began. By chanting, using megaphone sirens, pots & pans whistles and triangle (!) we definitely got the curtains twitching with staff looking out of their windows to see what all the noise was about. One member of staff summed our protest up accurately; “really annoying.”
After spending an hour or so at Marlborough House we decided to head round the corner to AXA’s other offices in the city, at Spectrum House on Bond Street. We lost our police followers on the way, using our now patented 'saying the demo was over but all leaving in a big group in the same direction' technique. We managed to gain a few extra activists and a third megaphone making this demo even noisier! Once again security had locked the mains doors, meaning staff had to go in through the side. Sirens were wailing and AXA staff and other workers inside Spectrum House were left in no doubt about why we were there. We left with a clear message for AXA; as long as you invest in AstraZeneca and fund animal torture, we will be outside your doors.
The May Day week of action continues with actions against workfare, ATOS, new nuclear and in defence of the NHS, check the website for more info!