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Animal rights group claims Paula Reed's departure related to fur use

Animal rights campaign group Peta has issued a statement implying that Paula Reed quit Harvey Nichols yesterday after thousands of people had protested against her decision to stock items with real fur.

The luxury department store announced Reed’s resignation yesterday afternoon after just over a year in the role. Chief executive Joseph Wan said he was “saddened” by her departure.

Last night a representative for pressure group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) sent out a statement noting that Reed had been “single-handedly responsible for breaking Harvey Nichols’ strict decade-long policy against selling fur”.

The statement shops short of explicitly stating that her departure had come about from the campaign that had run throughout the week.

But spokesman Ben Williamson noted that Peta had been informed of her resignation from Wan himself, adding that the group hoped “her resignation will pave the way for the reinstatement of the department store’s previous, well-respected policy”.

Peta and other pressure groups had coordinated a widespread protest, in which Harvey Nichols was sent “more than 5,000 emails and thousands of Facebook messages and tweets” about Reed’s “disastrous decision” to stock a selection of coats with fur trims.

“We ask Harvey Nichols to realign itself now with the ethical values of the British public - 95% of whom would never wear real fur and who rightly regard the industry as one of the most violent, bloody and barbaric on the planet - and reinstate its ban on fur,” Williamson added.

Harvey Nichols could not be reached for comment. However a source close to the company said there was no connection between the two.

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