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14 July 2012

Happy 30th Anniversary

Gosport Cats Protection held it’s 30th anniversary tea party on Saturday 14 July 2012 at the Parish Centre, in Alverstoke for around a hundred supporters and volunteers.  The event celebrated the founding of Gosport Cats Protection in 1982 by Hazel Alexander and daughter Debbie.  They began with just £200, a cat trap and one pen funded by a volunteer situated in their garden. Most of the work then revolved around trapping and neutering the colonies of feral cats in the Gosport naval establishments and in the High Street area together with taming and rehoming feral kittens.

Malcolm Brown, Head of Operations South East and Lewis Coghlin, Director of Fundraising from the national charities headquarters attended the event presenting Hazel with a bouquet, a brooch and framed certificate in recognition of 30 years dedicated volunteering for the charity. The efforts of all supporters and volunteers, past and present, was recognised and appreciated by Headquarters and of course locally too. Invited guests included representatives from other local Cats Protection branches, animal welfare organisations and staff from Alver Veterinary Group and Vets4Pets. Guests heard Mrs Alexander say how the work was and still can be ‘heartbreaking’ and relayed how in the early days she used to feed the feral cats at the Naval establishments in Gosport and on one occasion Hazel said she was sternly ticked off by a naval captain who insisted she stopped feeding the cats. Hazel naturally declined and later Celia Hammond, the famous model and staunch advocate of humane treatment for feral cats, said to Hazel ‘that the captain shouldn’t have spoken to her like that, and certainly not without his hat on!’

Thank you to everyone who supported, attended and helped to make the anniversary tea party such a happy and successful event. A special mention to Mollie for the table decorations, Jane for the cat bunting, bows and decorating the celebratory cake and Ollie for creating the volunteers name badges. We couldn’t have had a tea party without the help of the WI making refreshments and volunteers baking and making an assortment of cakes and quiches. Thank you also for kind donations on the day of £209 which as always helps us continue our work for cats and kittens in need.

photo shows (l-r) Hazel Alexander, Malcolm Brown, Lewis Coughlin)