The controversial Boobs on Bikes parade, organised by porn distributor Steve Crow, went ahead on Wednesday afternoon despite a protest by Auckland Women’s Centre and Stop Demand Foundation.
About 45 policemen, 60 protesters, thousands of spectators and several topless women descended on Queen St.
Thousands of cameras and mobile phones were pulled from pockets to record the protest and parade.
Some protesters held up signs that read: “Pornography fuels sexual violence against women and children”.
Auckland councillor Cathy Casey held up a banner in protest but had earlier threatened to lie down on the road to stop the event.
June Sunkel, who has worked for the Salvation Army for 40 years, was also present.
“We work with young women who have been exposed to porn,” she said.
“I question whether Boobs on Bikes is appropriate in a large city. Should we be giving this industry prominence?
TV host Jeremy Wells was in on the action with a cameraman in tow. He said the event was degrading to women.
“It promotes greed. It promotes gluttony. We will all burn in hell. If God can smite cities then Auckland better fucking look out.”
Mike Davies was holding his 16-month-old son above the crowd for a better view. He said he thought the event was a chance for people to discard their inhibitions.
“I don’t think this little guy would know what is going on.”
Some were clearly enjoying it.
“Everything goes. It’s only a few boobs. Who could be offended?” said one woman.
An Auckland policeman, who declined to be named, said the event had been a peaceful one.