Animal Welfare Party UK gains representative!
Good news: our fellow animal advocacy party in the UK, the Animal Welfare Party, gained a new representative! Hexham Town Council member Lee Williscroft-Ferris switched from being independent to representing AWP. He is the second representative in the party’s history.
Lee Williscroft-Ferris has been politically engaged from a young age, as a trade union activist, a campaigner for equality and a passionate advocate for animals. He is a vegan and animal lover and believes that animal rights are both central to the future of the planet and the next logical step in the fight for social justice. Lee was elected to Hexham Town Council in Northumberland in 2021.
“I’ve made this decision because I believe it has never been more urgent to put people, animals and the planet at the heart of politics at every level. I believe only the Animal Welfare Party recognises the urgent need to address the challenges we face through the lens of people, animals and our planet together. I am proud to have led efforts to make Hexham Town Council’s work more inclusive. This vision will be enhanced with AWP behind me”, Lee explains.
Lee has three key priorities for the next phase of the council’s work. These include:
- Promoting healthy and sustainable plant-based food and drink in public settings, including council events.
- Animal-proofing all of Hexham Town Council’s policies and events to combat speciesism and habitat loss.
- Striving to work with stakeholders to make sustainable transport, including walking, cycling and public transport, the easiest option.
From 2017 to 2023, the Animal Welfare Party had one councillor, Jane Smith, in the town of Alsager in Cheshire. Jane’s 2019 ‘Hedgehog Motion’, stipulating native hedging or wildlife tunnels be mandated for all new planning applications submitted to the town council, was unanimously approved and has since been adopted by many other councils across the UK.
In response to Lee Williscroft-Ferris’ move to AWP, Party Leader Vanessa Hudson said:
“The UK prides itself on its reputation as being a nation of animal lovers and we have often led the way on rejecting practices that are harmful to animals and advancing their rights. It is only fitting then that those keen to focus on the needs of animals, nature and people should have a place in our decision-making bodies. We are delighted that Lee has joined us, becoming the second town councillor in our party’s history and, we hope, signalling a move to a broader-focussed and more compassionate political debate. We welcome him into our party and look forward to supporting his work for animals, nature and people in Hexham and beyond.”
Inspired by this good news story? Find out more about the Animal Welfare Party.