Women and cow bells

Hells Bells – Dutch campaigner who wants Swiss cow bells banned angers village

A DUTCH vegan who wants to ban cow bells and has twice been denied Swiss citizenship for being “too annoying” has angered an entire village by finally gaining her passport.

Nancy Holten, 43, has lived in Switzerland since she was eight, speaks fluent Swiss-German and has children who are citizens.

But she was turned down by locals in her village of Gipf-Oberfrick because they were irritated by her campaigns against using cowbells which she says are cruel to animals.

Ms Holten also campaigned over village church bells being too loud, and spoke out against piglet racing and hunting.

In Switzerland townspeople can have a say in the granting of citizenship and after being denied citizenship by a local council back in January, Ms Holten appealed to state authorities who overruled the decision – much to the anger of the village.

Local politician Tanja Suter said Holten had a “big mouth”, and did not deserve to get a Swiss passport.

She added: “She irritates us and does not respect our traditions.”

Ms Holten said that she is “relieved” to be granted citizenship, though the decision still needs to be ratified in the coming weeks.

She revealed that she is now considering moving from the village because she is so unpopular.

She said: ”It is no longer very pleasant here, even though there are people in the village who have been supportive.”

Ms Holten, who describes herself online as a TV presenter, YouTuber, freelance journalist, actress, IT-woman and model, first applied for a passport back in 2015.

That resulted in the citizens of Gipf-Oberfrick holding a referendum, which saw her denied by a vote of 144-62.

The publicity the case generated earned Ms Holten frequent spots on TV which she used to plug her campaign against the cowbells – saying they were too loud for the animals to have near their ears and too heavy.

Local residents in Switzerland often have a say in citizenship applications, which are decided by councils where the applicants live rather than the federal government.

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