The rescued hedgehog who inspired a 'rock star' to help save hedgehogs in Great Britain
Grace the Hedgehog came to Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue last autumn, underweight and suffering from ‘fly-strike’ in a large wound on her neck. She made an amazing, full recovery whilst in their care and is now the star of the #AmazingGrace campaign and features in the video that highlights some of the hazards that hedgehogs face today in the UK.
On Tuesday 26th April 2016, at the Portcullis House in London, Dr. Brian May and Anne Brummer launched their joint campaign to save Britain's hedgehogs with the support of Andrea Jenkins MP.
Notable attendees of the event included Oliver Colvile MP, Shadow environment secretary Kerry McCarthy and Lib Dem Peer Baroness Bonham Carter. Downton Abbey’s Peter Egan and TV’s Marc the Vet also came to show their support of hedgehogs. Guests received flyers full of hedgehog friendly tips, enjoyed vegan ‘Hoggy’ cupcakes, and listened as singer and actress Kerry Ellis joined Queen legend Dr. Brian May to perform a stirring and emotional rendition of the traditional 18th-century hymn ‘Amazing Grace’. Fay Vass, CEO of the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, Henry Johnson from Hedgehog Street, and Hugh Warwick, ecologist and author of 'A Prickly Affair', who has been studying hedgehogs for more than 20 years were also on-hand with some expert advice.
Dr. Brian May said ‘The UK’s hedgehogs are in trouble. Our hedgehog population has dropped dramatically from 35 million to less than a million in the last forty years. We want to highlight the dangers faced by hedgehogs in Britain today and the threat of how they could be extinct by 2025 - that’s less than 10 years - unless we can help them.’
Anne Brummer, chief executive of the Save Me Trust and founder of Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue, said: ‘We have seen a worrying decline in hedgehogs at our rescue over recent years. We have to raise awareness of the challenges that Grace and her fellow hedgehogs face, there are simple changes that you can make to your garden to become “Grace friendly”.’
Wouldn't it be great if Surrey became the first ‘hedgehog-friendly’ county in England? Surrey's open spaces and gardens were once full of our ‘spiky’ friends but now they are rarely seen or heard. If we get Councils, landowners and the gardening public to make a few simple changes that dream could become a reality.
We need your help too - we are asking animal lovers to make videos or take selfies quoting one of the hedgehog facts on the website and put it on your social media using the hashtag #AmazingGrace. Then, ask your friends and family to share your post and make one themselves; if we all made some simple changes to our gardens it would help save hedgehogs.