ANIMAL rights protesters dressed in costumes targeted meat traders in Wickford High Street for the second time in two weeks.

A group of about 12 people gathered outside J Clark and Sons on Tuesday morning, including some dressed as chickens.

Earlier this month, protesters stood outside Iceland supermarket, opposite the butcher’s shop, to voice their opposition to the sale of “exotic” animal meat.

The group is understood to have filmed members of the public entering the butchers after gathering in the High Street at about 11am.

Staff said the protesters were aggressive, but they did not speak to them directly and did not know the exact reason for the protest.

Michael Mowe, borough councillor for Wickford North, was driving along the High Street while the protest was ongoing.

He said: “They were all dressed in animal outfits, like the onesies you can get in Primark.

“This time, it was outside the butcher’s shop, but a fortnight ago they were outside Iceland because it sells kangaroo meat.

“The police were there and it was quite busy, as it was causing a bit of an obstruction and forcing people into the road.”

Two weeks ago, a protest outside Iceland is believed to have been linked to the chain’s sale of meat including kangaroo, ostrich and buffalo.

Previous protests have been held on animal rights grounds, with claims many kangaroos suffer painful deaths and hunters tear babies from dying mothers.

But staff at J Clark and Sons said they do not sell any such meat.

An Essex Police spokesman said: “Police were in attendance in the High Street just after 11am after reports 12 people were protesting in the town.

“They were filming members of the public and given advice about blocking public access to shops.

“They left at 11.45am.”