Mel Doel - RSPCA Honours 2017Former BBC anchor Mel Doel has been given a prestigious animal welfare award by the RSPCA, recognising her immense commitment to animal welfare.

The RSPCA Richard Martin Gold Award is one of the highest honours the RSPCA can bestow, and recognises outstanding contributions towards improving the welfare of animals.

Ms Doel works closely with RSPCA Cymru, and has supported the charity with the production of a series of short films, in conjunction with students from The College Merthyr Tydfil.

She was also appointed President of the Glamorgan North & East branch of the RSPCA, further demonstrating her commitment to working with animals in Wales.

Her work with the charity has included supporting the production of four dedicated short films, which convey key animal welfare messages to the public, and key stakeholders.

These productions are produced with the support of Merthyr College students, with the pupils involved benefitting from Ms Doel’s knowledge and expertise.

RSPCA interim Chief Executive Officer Michael Ward said: “Mel’s long-standing commitment to animal welfare and the RSPCA is truly inspirational.

“Through her experience as a rural affairs correspondent, Mel has a unique insight into many of the challenges we face in protecting the nation’s animals. It’s amazing to have such a recognisable figure from Wales promoting our cause so passionately.

“Mel’s broadcast experience has been pivotal, too, in supporting our partnership with Merthyr College, where students make films on key animal welfare issues.

“Having worked with the RSPCA across Wales, and as President of the Glamorgan North & East branch of the RSPCA, Mel has a clear understanding of how our charity works, and has been influential in supporting our work, and giving animals a voice.

“This prestigious RSPCA Richard Martin Gold award is testimony to an outstanding, long-standing and unwavering commitment to the welfare of animals.”

Mel Doel said: “It’s an immense privilege to be recognised with this most prestigious award, and I am so proud to be so closely associated with the RSPCA, and their charitable work across Wales.

“My work with RSPCA Cymru is enormous fun, and sees me support talented groups of students from Merthyr College in helping bring key animal welfare topics to life.

“I am also so proud to serve as President of the Glamorgan North & East branch. RSPCA branches do amazing work locally, and highlight the critical role volunteers play across the country in championing, and furthering, the animal welfare cause.

“Animal welfare is a huge passion of mine, and I look forward to continuing to support RSPCA Cymru’s work in making Wales a better place to live for all animals.”

The most recent production celebrated the first ten years of the Animal Welfare Act in Wales, and how RSPCA Cymru has utilised the legislation to protect animals, and campaigned for continued progressive change.

Ms Doel spent 20 years as a high-profile broadcaster with BBC Wales, and remains heavily involved in civic life in Wales, having served as Chair of the Brecon Beacons National Park and the Abergavenny Food Festival; and Deputy Chair of National Parks UK.

The RSPCA Honours ceremony was held on Saturday 17 June at The Law Society in London.

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