BVA delighted at veterinary appointment to House of Lords

Sandy Trees

The British Veterinary Association has warmly welcomed the announcement that Professor Alexander (Sandy) Trees will become a Crossbench Peer in the House of Lords, following the recommendation of the House of Lords Appointments Commission. 

Professor Trees will become only the second veterinary surgeon to enter the House of Lords, joining Lord Soulsby of Swaffham Prior in Parliament's upper chamber.

The BVA is also pleased to announce that Professor Trees, who is currently Veterinary Editor in Chief of BVA Publications, will formally open BVA’s annual Congress in Liverpool on Friday 28 September under the theme of ‘Delivering a healthy future’.

Professor Trees has worked in general practice, industry and academia and his career spans Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He has produced over 140 scientific papers and is currently Chairman of the Board of the Moredun Research Institute in Edinburgh. He was formerly President of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and Dean of Liverpool University Veterinary School.

Professor Trees will be introduced to the House of Lords at a future date as a non-party-political (Crossbench) Peer, at which point his formal title will be announced.

Commenting on Professor Trees’ appointment, BVA President Carl Padgett said:

"The British Veterinary Association is absolutely delighted at Professor Trees' appointment to the House of Lords. He will bring a wealth of experience and scientific expertise into the political arena, not only in the fields of animal health and welfare but also public health, where he has particular knowledge and experience.

“We are pleased that the value of veterinary input in legislative debate has been recognised by the Appointments Commission.

"We are also proud that Professor Trees will be formally opening this September's BVA Congress in Liverpool where he inspired two generations of vets through his teaching and research, and we look forward to working with him to deliver a healthy future for animals, vets and the country."

Professor Trees said:

“I am delighted and humbled to be appointed as a member of the House of Lords, not least as I will become only the second veterinary surgeon to be ennobled.

“The understanding of science in public policy has never been more important and I look forward to bringing my experience and knowledge to the House.

“In addition to my areas of expertise in veterinary science and public health, I have a personal and professional interest in the quality of science education amongst the public and in schools, in international development, and in conservation and natural history.

“I shall endeavour to be an advocate for science-based policy making and also for the veterinary profession. I believe that veterinary surgeons both in practice and academia could, and should, play a more prominent role in advising Parliament not only on animal health and welfare matters, but also on human healthcare.”

Further Information

Biographical notes for Professor Alexander (Sandy) Trees BVM&S, PhD, DipEVPC, MRCVS: Professor Trees is a veterinary surgeon who has worked in general practice, industry and academia. He recently retired as Professor of Veterinary Parasitology, University of Liverpool, after a career working in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He held a number of senior professional positions, including recently as President of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons of which he is still a Council member. He was Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Liverpool from 2001 to 2008.

He has delivered the prestigious Wooldridge Lecture at the British Veterinary Association Congress (2009) and the McCall lecture at the University of Glasgow. He has received the Selborne medal of the Association of Veterinary Teachers and Research Workers and the Amoroso Award of the British Small Animal Veterinary Association. The major part of Professor Trees’ career has been in academic research and teaching in parasitic diseases at the University of Liverpool, where he held a variety of posts covering a period of over 30 years, commencing in 1980.

He has published more than 140 scientific papers and has been active in promoting research and funding for research training, and in the advancement of veterinary education. Professor Trees’ research and teaching has included human as well as animal health. He has made a significant contribution to tropical medicine through his drug development research concerning human river blindness in West Africa and has made major contributions to temperate climate livestock and companion animal diseases, including abortion in cattle and disease threats to travelling pets. He is currently Editor in Chief of the British Veterinary Association’s professional journal, Veterinary Record, and Chairman of the Board of the Moredun Research Institute, Edinburgh.