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Leicester’s City Mayor, has dismissed a PETA request to rename the city’s famous Pork Pie roundabout ‘Vegan Pie Roundabout’, labelling it a ‘pie in the sky’ suggestion.

In a letter written to Peter Soulsby, the vegan activist group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals), said that the roundabout, in Saffron Lane, should be renamed to help promote healthier food choices. They believe it would also send a signal that any animal suffering which goes into making pork pies and other meat treats is unacceptable.
Instead, the group believes the island, which is named after the nearby 1930s Pork Pie Library, should adopt the new name of ‘Vegan Pie Roundabout’.

Picture: PETA

PETA’s claims refer to the publication of a new survey last month which showed that 33.6 per cent of people aged 18 and over in the North West Leicestershire area were obese – that was up on the 22 per cent recorded five years earlier – making the area the most obese in the county. Blaby was the second worst with an obesity rate of 30.1 per cent, with Melton following close behind on 28.8 per cent.

“This is not a pie-in-the-sky request,” says the letter, which was sent from PETA to Peter Soulsby.

“Eating a varied plant-based diet has been shown to prevent heart disease, diabetes, abdominal fat, and cancer.

“Vibrant vegan foods also have less saturated fat, fewer calories, and less cholesterol than their meaty counterparts.

“Encouraging people to eat plant-based could also help lessen the burden on Leicester’s already overstretched NHS.”

PETA adds that “since the word “vegan” was coined in Leicester by Donald Watson in 1944, changing the name of the roundabout “would also be a great way to celebrate the city’s vegan and pie-loving heritage”.

Leicester City Mayor Sir Peter Soulsby has responded to PETAs, apparently serious request, labelling it “pie in the sky.”

“It’s a funny and quite clever way of drawing attention to themselves and their cause – but there is no way we could change the name people have given to the library and the roundabout next to it,” he said in a statement.

“It has been known locally as the Pork Pie Library since it was built in the 1930s, thanks to its distinctive circular shape. Any talk of changing its name is just pie in the sky.”

Residents have reacted with a mixture of anger and disbelief over the suggested name change.

“It’s ridiculous, the Pork Pie Roundabout has been here for years and years,” said Marie Radcliffe who lives on Saffron Lane.

“It’s absolutely stupid,” added Shirley Bolter. “If they’ve got nothing better to do than come up with suggestions like that, they need to get a life.”

The Pork Pie roundabout received its moniker from an adjacent 1930s library that sits between two of its six junctions and resembles a pork pie when viewed from a bird’s-eye view.

The library itself was originally called Southfields Library but later became known as the Pork Pie Library due to its circular shape and now officially bears that name.