It's the summer of 1986 in Rotorua, and two young brothers are off to see the circus, free from their parents for the first time in their lives.

There's an "electric atmosphere" as the boys find themselves surrounded by people, animals, colours and delights - "it was a kid's dream".

Right up until the dream turned into a nightmare.

Kent Briggs was one of those brothers who, at just 7 years old was watching every single detail like a hawk, taking it all in.

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The first act saw a group of lions perform inside a cage, only the animals became