By Sam Threadgill, Director

6th April 2021

Tonight is the final episode in a two part ITV series entitled Britain's Tiger Kings: On the Trail With Ross Kemp. In the show, the presenter visits the murky world of private keepers of dangerous wild animals such as lions, tigers and jaguars. According to research by Born Free, almost 4,000 dangerous wild animals are currently kept in Britain.

What is absolutely clear whilst watching Britain's Tiger Kings is the reality that wild animals do not belong in captivity. A small cage beside the M1 motorway, in which Reece Oliver keeps lions, is incomparable to the open grasslands of sub-Saharan Africa. Martin Lacy (who is also featured) moved to Germany to perform tigers in circus shows after the cruel practice, viewed by the vast majority of the public as abhorrent, was outlawed in Britain following decades of campaigning by Freedom for Animals.

The first episode featured Amazing Animals, a business based Oxfordshire that holds many different animals captive and forces them to perform for the entertainment industry. In 2016, Freedom for Animals exposed the cruel treatment that animals at Amazing Animals were subjected to. During our shocking investigation, a meerkat, a tiger and a hyena were all seen pacing back and forth, again and again, weaving in circles mentally disturbed by their captivity. After viewing our footage, wildlife presenter Chris Packham described the business as 'appalling'.

Borth Wild Animal Kingdom is featured in this evening's episode; a horror zoo where one in five animals there died within the space of a year. The catalogue of suffering at Borth is long indeed and the zoo was recently ordered to rehouse it's big cats after failing to comply with its licence conditions.

Whilst the pretence of 'caring' for the animals these owners hold captive becomes transparent within the programme, it is plain to see how deeply unethical and harmful the practice is to the thousands of wild animals sentenced to lifetime of captivity. Those featured within Britain's Tiger Kings cause huge suffering to the very animals they claim to love.