It’s all change at the British Veterinary Association (BVA) after the new president and vice-presidents took up their posts.

John Blackwell (left) and Sean Wensley.

During the association’s members’ day at the Midland Hotel in Manchester, farm animal and equine vet John Blackwell was elected president for 2014/15, while charity vet Sean Wensley was elected as junior vice-president. The changes mean Robin Hargreaves is now senior vice-president.

Mr Blackwell was born and brought up in Wrexham, North Wales, and graduated from the University of Liverpool’s veterinary school in 1985. He is director of Brownlow Veterinary Centre, a three-centre mixed practice in Ellesmere, Shropshire.

A former president of the British Cattle Veterinary Association, Mr Blackwell is also a director on the Animal Medicines Training and Regulatory Authority board and an external lecturer on the emergency slaughter of cattle at the University of Nottingham’s vet school. The theme for his presidency at the BVA will be “delivering change and shaping the future“.

Mr Blackwell said he was “proud and honoured” to become president.

“I look forward to representing our members’ views and to the challenges that lie ahead as we continue to promote the value of veterinary health care and expertise to society, ensuring all animals have a life worth living.”

Mr Wensley, meanwhile, was brought up in Formby, Merseyside, and graduated from the University of Liverpool in 2003. He is senior veterinary surgeon for communication and education at veterinary charity the PDSA and is based at the PDSA PetAid hospital in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

He is also an honorary lecturer in animal welfare at the University of Nottingham as well as a committee member of the Companion Animal Welfare Council.

Mr Wensley said it was a “great honour” to join the BVA officer team.

“During my 10 years of involvement with the association, I have seen at first hand the huge commitment of its staff and committees,” he said. “I am looking forward to joining a team dedicated to assisting the veterinary profession advocate for the good health and welfare of animals, thereby contributing to solutions to many of the complex global challenges affecting animal and human well-being.”

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