Bull running 2023: What is tradition during the festival of San Fermín all about?

[08-07-2023 04:54 PM]

Ammon News - This year's Running of the Bulls has started in Pamplona in Spain.

The famous event takes place each year during the festival of San Fermín, the city's patron saint.

Every morning during the festival people run down a short course of narrow streets in the city in front of six fighting bulls.

It is a big tourist attraction and many people travel to the city in Northern Spain to watch it but it is quite controversial.

Thousands of people take part and there have been injuries and even deaths in the past as people can get trampled by the animals.

Some people also think it is very cruel to the animals who are used in the runs.

So why do people do it and what is it all about? Read on to find out more.

How did the tradition of Running of the Bulls start?
It is thought it first started many years ago when apprentice butchers helped the bull minders bring the animals from ranches into the city.

The young men started to run in front of the animals to encourage them to move forward and over time members of the public got involved too.

It is now a famous event and many tourists visit for the chance to see it happening.

When does the bull running take place?
The annual event takes place from 6 until 14 July with eight runs in total.

Each morning at 8am six fighting bulls and six tame oxen run along the route.

It's part of a wider festival which also involves religious processions, parties and concerts.

How long is the course?
The 875 metre course starts from San Domingo Street and ends in the bullring where the animals are used in bull fights with matadors.

It only takes a couple of minutes for the bulls to race along it but it can be an intense and chaotic experience for people brave, or foolhardy enough to enter.

Runners are advised to run as fast as they can in front of the bulls, but to pull away to one side when the animals get close.

Who can take part?
It is a free event that anyone can get involved in but people have to be over the age of 18 and there are strict rules about not drinking alcohol before people do it.

How many people take part in the event?
Usually there are about 2,000 people taking part, but many more come to see it.

Lots of people watch the spectacle from the safety of their balconies.

Is it safe?
There are lots of safety measures to protect the public, such as double barriers along the route and warning rockets to tell people when the event has started and ended.

However, it is very dangerous for those running in front of the bulls as people can get hurt, especially if they fall over on the course.

There are often injuries when the bulls trample people or gored them with their horns and sixteen people have died in the bull runs since 1911.

Why is it controversial?
Peta (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals charity) and Spanish animal rights group, AnimalNaturalis, say the event is cruel to the animals taking part and should be stopped.

They says spectators often don't realise the bulls used in the runs end up being killed in bullfights afterwards.

The groups have campaigned for years for it to end.

In 2022 people dressed as dinosaurs ran the route the day before the bull run in protest at the event.

Peta said the protest was to show that: "This vile event should go the way of the dinosaurs and a new, animal-free celebration be created.

"Tradition is never an excuse for cruelty."


  • no comments

All comments are reviewed and posted only if approved.
Ammon News reserves the right to delete any comment at any time, and for any reason, and will not publish any comment containing offense or deviating from the subject at hand, or to include the names of any personalities or to stir up sectarian, sectarian or racial strife, hoping to adhere to a high level of the comments as they express The extent of the progress and culture of Ammon News' visitors, noting that the comments are expressed only by the owners.
name : *
show email
comment : *
Verification code : Refresh
write code :