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  Ex-circus bear to live in luxury
Updated 18 December 2003, 14.19

Fred the former circus bear is sure to have a happy retirement.

He's jetting off to a sanctuary in Canada, where he'll be free to run in the wild, bathe in a swimming pool and hang out with other bears.

Ten-year-old Fred, who's thought to be Britain's last circus bear, retired from the ring three years ago.

Fred's owner wanted to find him a new home. Animal charity WSPA recommended the Bear With Us sanctuary in Ontario and now Fred's joining the residents.

Fred seems like the sort of bear who will settle in nicely.

"He's got great character," said a WSPA spokesman.

Teddy bear

"Some bears can be a little aggressive, but Fred just seems like a soppy big old teddy bear."

Fred could live for another 20 years - it looks like he's in for a long and luxurious retirement.

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