The boss of one of Bristol’s most popular ice cream parlours has described how he has been affected by an attack from a militant vegan, who also targeted a local butcher in a spree of criminal damage last night.
Bradley Tarr, from the family-run Tarr’s Ice Creams in Brislington, said he wasn’t sure what the man who smashed windows and sprayed graffiti alluding to the Animal Liberation Front was trying to achieve.
The man, who is now being hunted by police, also attacked nearby Sandy Park Butchers, which has been targeted before by a similar incident.
Mr Tarr said he was called by neighbours at just after 12.15am last night to alert him to the attack. He said CCTV images at the shop showed a man in his late 30s or 40s carrying a rucksack and arriving on a bicycle, smashing the shop’s windows with a hammer and spraying the words ‘Go Vegan’ and ‘ALF’ on the store.
A very similar attack happened at around the same time to Sandy Park Butchers, and police are linking the two. Mr Tarr said his customers have shown their support today – and told him that the only thing the attack would do would be to turn people against vegans.
“The tenant who lives in the flat upstairs called to say someone was smashing the windows and spraying graffiti, and the people who live across the road also said they saw them,” said Mr Tarr. “The police were here within ten minutes.”
“It meant I had to clean off the graffiti and we had to stop production today, and open later than usual,” he said, adding that it is the first time the ice cream parlour has been targeted by the militant animal rights groups, who have targeted butchers in Bristol before.
“A lot of customers have come along to show their support today. Many of them told me they don’t see what it’s going to achieve, they said all it’s going to achieve is turning people against vegans, I don’t understand it, really,” he added.
Just down the road in Brislington, Sandy Park Butchers was also hit. “It was obviously not a complete shock to come in and find this, this morning,” said Steve Cooper.
“It’s something that can happen, and has happened before. It’ll mean more expense and the insurance will have to get more involved, but we’ll just carry on,” he said.