THE final curtain has been drawn on animal circuses in Wales as the ban on using animals in travelling shows in Wales was given royal assent.

The Wild Animals and Circuses (Wales) Bill was approved to become constitutional law on Monday, September 7 following unanimous approval by members of the Welsh Parliament over the summer.

It follows the same measures in Scotland in 2018 and England in 2019 and marks the end of 14 years of campaigning by the RSPCA.

The bill, which comes into force on December 1, confirms that Peter Jolly’s Circus will be prohibited from using animals for exhibition or performance at any of its summer shows in Rhyl.

Polling commissioned by the RSPCA revealed that 74 per cent of people in Wales backed a ban on wild animals performing in circuses, while about 9,000 people had signed an RSPCA Cymru petition calling for the practice to be outlawed.

Claire Lawson, RSPCA assistant director for external relations in Wales, said that royal assent is "another cause for celebration" for the charity.

"RSPCA Cymru has long campaigned on this issue - and this law makes such an important statement as to how society in Wales treats animals, and our norms and values towards our fellow living creatures," she said.

"The strength of feeling in all corners of Wales is clear, and people across the country will join us when this out-dated activity is finally consigned to the history books, once and for all."

Peter Jolly’s Circus, which was one of just two licensed travelling animal circuses in the UK, was met with protests at its shows in Ruthin and Corwen in 2018. Until the bans came into force across the UK the circus passed inspections by Defra which included performances, diet and transportation.