Circuses Policy

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Use of Council Land by Circuses

This policy was created by Council resolution.

On April 19th 1995 Council, upon recommendation from the Culture and Recreation Committee, resolved:

"THAT the granting of leases/licenses on Council owned land exclude Circuses which use exotic animals as part of their entertainment".

C41/95 Clause 1. Ordinary Meeting of the Council, 19 April 1995 Culture and Recreation Committee, Meeting of 11 April 1995

The principle behind the resolution, i.e., the inappropriateness of using captive animals for the purpose of entertainment, also applies to zoos. Zoos however usually have objectives other than entertainment / profit objectives. These include conservation, education recreation and research.

The Committee Report was accompanied by a literature review entitled "Circuses and Zoos: A discussion paper on the objectives and animal welfare issues". The Committee was presented with the choice between allowing circuses that held a current MAF certificate to use Council land or the prohibition encompassed in the recommendation above.

This policy altered the status quo which at that time was to allow circuses holding the appropriate MAF authorisations to use Council land.

Note: the use of the term exotic is used to distinguish animals from those classed as domestic which may be farmed or held by any member of the public. This includes animals such as llamas, alpacas, ostriches, horses and donkeys.