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Pamplona’s bull running festival begins

The world-famous bull runs have already brought many tourists to Pamplona to witness one of Spain’s most iconic festivals.

 

the event started yesterday (6th of July), and lasts until the 14th. The bull runs happen every morning, where people race with bulls along a 930-yard street course and finish at the bullring.

 

The start of this tradition goes back to the 13th Century, when the bulls would run down streets like the one they use, for about half a mile, as the locals would chase them with sticks, trying to get them into the bullring.

 

The run begins on Pamplona’s Santo Domingo street, and finishes in the Plaza de Toros, where the participants can continue running around the bullring with the bulls once they’ve completed the run.

 

Dozens of people are injured each year in the run, mostly by being trampled on by bulls. Last year 12 people were gored by them during the event.

 

Men and women over the age over 18 can participate. A rule changed in 1974 to allow women to participate, in what used to be a male-only event. In the evening, children have their own version, where they run with a fake bull stuffed with fireworks.

 

Although this is a popular event among many, others from animal rights organisations are against it. There are often protests by these groups in several areas of Spain to try to get a ban on the sport. In Catalonia, it was banned in 2010, but later overturned as the Spanish constitutional court said it was part of the country’s tradition.

 

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