Police arrest 25 people after protesters try to stop Scottish Grand National

Police confirmed a number of arrests after protesters tried to stop the race.

‘Number of arrests’ after protesters try to stop Scottish Grand National, police say Animal Rising

Police have arrested 25 people after animal rights protesters made their way onto the track at the Scottish Grand National.

Police say they are responding to the incident with a “significant operation” ongoing to remove the protesters.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said: “Officers are responding to a protest which is ongoing at Ayr Racecourse this afternoon.

“A significant operation is underway to safely remove those involved.

“A number of arrests have been made and an increased police presence remains at the scene.”

The big race, which was won by Kitty’s Light, still managed to go ahead.

On Saturday afternoon, animal rights group Animal Rising, who are advocating for an end to horse racing, say 25 supporters ran onto the track in a bid to “protect the animals”.

It comes after horse Oscar Elite died on the track on Saturday afternoon.

Following the incidents, assistant chief constable Tim Mairs said: “Around 3.20pm on Saturday, April 22, just before the main Scottish Grand National event at Ayr Racecourse, a large group of protesters climbed under and over fences and made their way towards the track. 

“A prompt and professional response by stewards and Police Scotland officers prevented this group from causing any disruption. As a result, the race was completed successfully and without further issue.

“Following this, there was a further attempt to disrupt a later race involving a smaller group of protesters.

“Both incidents resulted in people being safely removed and no injuries have been reported.

“Overall, there have been 25 arrests so far across the day and enquires are continuing.

“I would like to commend the work of the officers and stewards who responded swiftly to intervene and prevent further escalation.

“We worked closely with the event organisers and other partners ahead of the Scottish Grand National to ensure a proportionate plan was in place to keep people safe and facilitate peaceful protest.”

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