British shark protester hangs from hooks

Don't look now: Woman hangs herself from shark hooks in protest

An artist suspended herself from the ceiling of a London shop by hooks through her skin, in protest against the treatment of sharks.

Spectators outside the cosmetics store Lush stood aghast as they watched Alice Newstead, a 26-year-old performance artist, hanging from shark hooks as blood trickled down her back.

Newstead performed the horrifying stunt in protest against the practice of slicing fins from sharks and throwing them back into the ocean alive, but Newstead insisted that her devotion to the cause did not hurt.

‘I am doing this because the demand for shark fin soup and other shark products is wiping out the shark population,’ said Newstead, who is a former employee of the Lush store on Regent Street.

‘I have had my torso, legs, arms, stomach and knees pierced before so that I could hang from them, so this is no big deal,’ she explained.

‘Being hung from the chest is more painful than the back because it restricts your breathing, but as long as the piercer knows what they are doing then it is completely safe.’

The stunt, which lasted for 15 minutes and drew in the Oxford Street crowds, was organised by Lush and the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society in protest at the practice of finning, where sharks are impaled on hooks before their fins are hacked off.

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