Animals Asia founder Jill Robinson has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement award at the 2013 Burgess Wetnose Animal Rescue Awards in London.
She received the award from Animals Asia Patron Virginia McKenna OBE and Ambassador Peter Egan at a ceremony at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower in Knightsbridge.
Jill paid tribute to Animals Asia staff, friends, supporters, and the people of China and Vietnam who have been so fundamental in the organisation's work to end bear bile farming.
She later added: “Receiving this award was a tremendous surprise and a huge honour. It was especially rewarding to be surrounded by so many good friends and long-term supporters. For a life-time achievement to be recognised is a wonderful feeling and a great boost to Animals Asia’s work, but there is still much left to achieve. Awards such as this give the bears the recognition and dignity they deserve, and inspire us all to carry on our work to end bear bile farming."
Wetnose was founded in 2006 to provide support to animal sanctuaries and animal welfare organisations and to raise public awareness of vulnerable animal issues. The awards, sponsored by Burgess Pet Care and Animal Friends Insurance, recognise the work of rescue centres for animals both large and small, wild and domesticated. Animal Friends Insurance also donated £1,000 to winners in each category.
The event, organised by Andrea and Gavin Gamby-Boulger, has become a huge favourite among animal lovers and is well attended by celebrities. This year these included long-time Animals Asia friends Dave Spikey and Rula Lenska alongside Maureen Lipman, Rick Wakeman, Lesley Nicol, Lorraine Chase, Anthea Turner, Jenny Seagrove, Vicki Michelle, Michelle Collins, Anthony Head, Samantha Fox, Miles Jupp, Simon Cowell, and David Shepherd.
Jill accepting the award with Peter and Virginia