History

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Spike Milligan signing autographs at our annual Animal Service

Our first headquarters opened in 1969 in a small office in Fordingbridge High Street in Hampshire, England.

Our President then was the British Comedy genius Spike Milligan CBE who over many years worked arduously on behalf of Animals’ Voice. In fact with Spike’s help we spearheaded the campaign against poultry factory farming and the clubbing to death of the baby seals in Orkney for their fur, delivering thousands of signed petitions to 10 Downing Street .

Sadly as the years passed his work commitments prevented him from being involved as much as he would have liked and for this reason thought it best to retire from the post of President in 1978.

Over the years it had become apparent that we had outgrown our premises and it was time for us to seek alternative offices. However the raising of funds would be the greatest challenge of all.

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From the left, James Mason and his wife Clarissa outside our offices in Fordingbridge, Hampshire

This is were our connection with actor and film star, the late James Mason comes in. On our behalf an appeal was launched to provide new headquarters at our present address, which he officially opened with his wife Clarissa on the 11th November 1976. James and his wife became joint Presidents of Animals’ Voice in January 1979 taking over from Spike.

Keen lovers of cats and great supporters of animal welfare they supported our work for many years. After James’s death, Clarissa continued as President until sadly she too passed away in 1994.

Upon the death of James and Clarissa Mason, we approached the world famous author and opera singer Miss Diana de Rosso to become our President. She had always owned animals and had an interest in them since childhood. Many of you may have heard of the work she has done, including television and radio appearances as well as the many articles she had written on animal Welfare. Diana was also the sister-in-law of James Mason, as her half sister Pamela was James Mason’s first wife.

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Diana de Rosso, a very sad loss to our Trust, will be missed by all

Unfortunately on the 6th February 2003 Diana de Rosso sadly passed away aged 81 years. Her loyalty and compassion for animals has been outstanding through the years, the loss of such a wonderful person has saddened us deeply. From the Chairman, Trustees and staff we give thanks to having known such an incredibly courageous lady whose thoughts and hopes were to help bring about changes for all suffering and ill-treated animals of this world.