The RSPCA first ever animal welfare charity ever to be established. This pioneering organisation was set up in 1824 by a group of campaigners and advocates of animal rights, which was headed up by Richard Martin, William Wilberforce, and Arthur Broome and many more. It is the oldest and largest animal welfare organisation in the world, with a workforce of 1,667. It has inspired many more similar organisations to start in many different parts of the world.
In the 19th century, practices such as badger baiting, fox hunting, cockerel fighting and bull baiting as amusing activities were being actively challenged by social reform campaigners. There were many attempts by people like this to pass laws in parliament in order to put an end to such brutal practices, but for many years, decades even, they were all without success. But Richard Martin’s act in 1822 to end cruelty to cattle finally became the first one to become law.
A group of his supporters started and gathered together a network which included Arthur Broome, who made efforts to create a voluntary establishment with the aim of promoting kindness and better treatment to animals. His opinions and writings were widely published in magazines and papers in 1821.
It was not long until this group began to attract the attentions of members of Parliament, who also became active members. The group voted to establish itself as the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Broome was appointed as the charity’s first honorary secretary. It was granted royal status by Queen Victoria in 1840, to become the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals as it is still known today.
Today, the RSPCA owns and runs centres, hospitals, and branches throughout England and Wales. In 2012, these centres and branches assisted and rehomed around 55,450 animals. In 2013, the charity owned four animal hospitals, as well as clinics that provide veterinary treatment to those who could not otherwise afford it.
To learn more about the work done by the RSPCA, by clicking on the link below: