London, 11th October 2023
Today (Wednesday 11th October) Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation (CAWF) is delighted to announce that Baroness Fookes DBE has become a Patron.
Baroness Fookes was a Conservative MP for 27 years, first for Merton and Morden in 1970 and later for Plymouth Drake from 1974 to 1997. During this time, she served as Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons from 1992 to 1997 and was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 1989. In 1997 she was made a Life Peer as Baroness Fookes and became Deputy Lieutenant of East Sussex in 2001.
Having seen 12 Prime Ministers in Downing Street, she has had an exceptionally long career in both Houses and continues to be fully active in bringing to the fore many issues relating to animal welfare. She served on the Council of the RSPCA from 1975 to 1992 and was its Chair from 1979 to 1981.
As an MP, Baroness Fookes was one of the first to speak out against the cruel live export trade. In recent years, she has steered the Glue Traps (Offences) Bill (now Act) through the House of Lords. She also took on sponsorship of the Hunting Trophies (Import Prohibition) Bill in the House of Lords from Patron Henry Smith MP who had successfully piloted through all its stages.
Baroness Fookes speaking of her recent appointment as a Patron said: “I am honoured to be invited to become a Patron of the Foundation which is carrying out such valuable work in drawing attention to the needs of animals and pressing for changes in the law. I wish I had had that kind of support in my earlier years as an MP.
I fear that my current concern with the bill to ban the import of animal trophies has run into trouble with a few peers determined to oppose it. They did suggest a compromise which I firmly believe would ruin its effectiveness and so I could not agree to it. With the end of the session in sight we must face the fact that it is all too likely not to become law.
There is plenty of work to challenge us. For starters we must put pressure on the Government to take on the Trophies Bill itself and give the Kept Animals Bill its chance to become law. It’s time for all hands on deck!”
Lorraine Platt, Co-Founder of Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation, commented: “Baroness Fookes continues to lead one of the most distinguished careers in modern political history, and we are honoured she has become our Patron today. We look forward to supporting the progression of the Hunting Trophies (Import Prohibition) Bill which Baroness Fookes is currently sponsoring through the House of Lords, and working more closely with her to ensure the animal welfare commitments of the Conservative Party Manifesto are delivered before the next General Election.”
About Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation (CAWF)
The Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation was established in 2016 to raise awareness on the lives of billions of animals reared on intensive farms around the world and how this impact upon animal welfare, the environment and people’s health. We want to highlight the action people can take to help advance farm animal welfare.
Animal welfare is an increasing concern amongst the public, who frequently look to Government to take the lead in both maintaining and improving standards.
The Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation believes it is highly important that the welfare of farm animals is placed at the forefront of the Governments plan for food and farming along with its focus on productivity, competitiveness, and technology.
Media contact: Sophia Stileman (firstname.lastname@example.org)