Cock fighting and bear baiting were outlawed many years ago along with other practices degrading to animals.

Now a show called Man Versus Beast, fronted by former footballer John Fashanu, seems to be reverting to those bad old days.

In the American version of the show, men were seen racing against a giraffe, wrestling with an orang-utan and trying to eat hotdogs faster than a bear. A team of dwarves also competed against an elephant at pulling a jet airliner.

Granada, which plans to put on the UK version of this tacky show, says no animals were harmed.

They may not physically have been hurt but they have been demeaned. The Born Free Foundation and the RSPCA, both based in Horsham, are right to complain.

Both should put all the pressure they can on the makers to stop them from carrying on with the show.

It is a cheap and shoddy programme making fun of animals in the name of entertainment. It should not be on the box.