Festive options at cruelty-free Xmas fair

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Organiser Melanie Price. Pic © JMU Journalism

An education into how to enjoy the festive season without harming animals was given to people in St Helens as they were welcomed to taste the life of being cruelty-free.

The Independent Methodist Church in Garswood hosted a Christmas fair with a twist – all the products on sale were made from natural resources.

Visitors were offered a range of Christmas gifts from cards, cosmetics from The Body Shop to clothing and accessories.

Saturday’s event was a fundraiser for Garston Animal Rescue, who save and rehabilitate unwanted animals.

Host Melanie Price told JMU Journalism she set this up after getting her cats from the charity and wanted to help raise money for them.

Ms Price added that she also wanted to raise awareness of veganism and cruelty-free options, telling JMU Journalism: “A lot of people stick to eating the same foods such as dairy and cheese.

“I want to introduce the idea of being vegan to people and that you don’t have to follow the norm.”

There was a stall entirely dedicated to educating people on veganism with a range of leaflets and people to talk to. There was also a chance for people to try vegan versions of  sushi, hummus and chips.

YouTube: Megan Tattersley

Ms Price told JMU Journalism: “A lot of people don’t try dairy food because they are afraid. If they don’t come across it in their day-to-day lives they wouldn’t buy it in the supermarket.”

For drinks, they provided oat and soya milk but for those unwilling to delve too much into veganism, dairy milk was also an option.

Ms Price had previously worked with the church on a concert and a meal, but had never organised something like this before.

Guest, James Stewart, 22, told JMU Journalism: “Christmas is the perfect time do to something like this. With New Year just around the corner, people will want to find ways to be better and healthier.”

Despite it being the first time, the turn-out was greater expected, with people showing up from the outset and the occasion remaining busy until it closed.