‘Never volunteer for anything’, so the saying goes. But that’s what I did last year, pledging some time to the League Against Cruel Sports to play my part in saving animals with like-minded people. Little did I know I would end up managing the League, now into my sixth month.

In the last couple of weeks, I have had the privilege of meeting some of the League’s longest serving and most loyal supporters, which has been a wonderful, and eye-opening experience. The passion they show for the League, and the animals we protect, was wonderful to see. It really hit home that the work we do matters. And right now, it’s my job to ensure that we continue doing that work at the highest possible level.

Since starting at the League I have seen the exceptional quality of the people who work alongside me. Our directors are experts in Marketing and Fundraising, Finance and HR, Public Policy and Communications, Investigations and Campaigns and most have a very good and or extensive background in animal welfare. For instance, one is an ex-CEO of an anti-hunt charity and another is a senior police officer who was formerly head of the UK National Wildlife Crime Unit.

Their teams are also experts in their fields – we need that to get the most out of our supporters’ money – including of course, in animal welfare. Being the voice for animals is at the heart of what we do! We have recently completed a restructure of part of the League so we are better optimised to do more and we are recruiting too. We are also investing in our field investigators. They are at the sharp end of our operations and always should be.

What else? We have invested in state of the art IT and software that gives us the technical edge necessary over those intent on harming animals or breaking the law. We continue to be found in Parliament, leading the way on animal welfare and in the courts and with the police, doing our utmost to enforce the law and also to change it – which we will. Our voice for animals on the national stage is loud and strong: just read the news on just about any day. We are growing our supporter base, with 12 new groups coming on line in the regions.

Of course, we can’t do any of this without our supporters. But we need to grow to make the change we all want to see, with more people lending their voice to our campaigns and causes, so that it will be harder for those who stand by cruelty to animals to ignore us. We must take our supporters on a journey; to give real meaning and show the value that their support and kind donations bring. We intend to do just that.

We do have our challenges. There are some who are out to get us; including those we used to count as our own, and of course, the opposition who seek any opportunity to put us down. At all times we will act with integrity and strength and that means that we cannot, and should not, react in ways that diminish us as an organisation. But in the background we now always fight our corner if we feel that what we are doing is just and right; whether it be on a campaign, against groups or individuals who are out for mischief, or when standing up in the field for animals, under intimidation or pressure.

So, there you have a short snapshot. My name is Andy Knott, a former Director serving on the Senior Leadership Team of a Global Multinational. I have 30 years experience in management and in growing organisations. Just like my colleagues, I have a passion for animals, but that’s not enough. As staff, we must also be effective and professional; with that comes results.

If you’re not a member of the League Against Cruel Sports already, please join us – we need more supporters like you and you will be playing your part in making us stronger and saving more animals.


Andy Knott MBE

Interim CEO