The only professional bullfighter in the UK has said he wants the animals to stop being killed after the fight, in fears that the sport could be banned in years to come.

Frank Evans, 77, began bullfighting in 1966 whilst he was living in Barcelona, and made his big debut on July 26. He earned his title as ‘El Ingles’.

Frank, originally from Salford, knows all too well the dangers of the popular Spanish profession but says the risk of being caught in an accident is just part of the job.

“If you play with fire, every now and then you get burnt,” he said.

“Being caught by the bull, being caught and being injured is just part of the game just like it is for a rugby player.

“You are at the mercy of any catastrophe once the bull has lifted you off your feet. 90 per cent of the time, you don’t get seriously injured.”

Credit: Cari Morris

Those who take part in bullfighting sign a contract to kill the bull after the fight, but Frank thinks changes need to be made or it could be abolished through protesters who deem the sport to be cruel and violent.

The bulls are killed with a sword and their death is usually quick. To Frank, killing the bulls at at all is inhumane. 

Despite the controversial nature of bullfighting, he is a self-confessed animal lover who spends up to £80 a week feeding the squirrels in his back garden.

He said: “People who are close to me wonder how I can do it when I have a big connection with animals. I am fascinated by wild animals particularly.

“I’m not a campaigner, but I would prefer it if we didn’t kill the bulls in the ring.

“The world has changed and it’s changing more quickly now in many ways than it’s ever done.”

Credit: Cari Morris

Instead, Frank suggested that bullfighters should simulate the killing instead, in order to stop anti-bull fighting protesters boycotting the sport.

“There have to be some political movements to make a change in the sport, but it can happen,” he said.

“Bullfighting isn’t just about killing the bull. It’s about the life that you lead, the training you do, the places you visit, the ranches you go to and the people you mix with.

“It’s a life within itself.”

Frank hopes to continue his activity in the ring until the day comes that he has to hang up his cape.

Although illegal in the UK, bull fighting is still a popular and cultural sport in countries like Spain and Portugal, homing over 1,000 festivals for the sport each year.

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