A policeman spearheading the fight against wildlife crime in Lincolnshire has been awarded a top honour by the renowned campaign group, WWF-UK.
PC Nick Willey became Wildlife Enforcer of the Year for his outstanding work while tackling wildlife crime since joining the Lincolnshire Police force wildlife department in 1994.
Nick recently featured on our front page when officers from Operation Galileo, a campaign tackling gangs hunting hares with dogs, sent a car to the crusher after seizing it from two Holbeach men who were convicted of hunting a wild mammal with a dog.
Speaking about his WWF-UK honour, Nick said: “I am honoured to have been awarded The Enforcer of the Year – the award not only recognises the work I have done in relation to the fight against wildlife crime, but the work of the rest of the team and the support I have received from the rest of my force.
“I would like to thank WWF for highlighting wildlife crime issues and supporting wildlife crime officers in the UK.”
Sarah Goddard, species policy officer at WWF-UK, said: “Over the last ten years Nick has significantly contributed to the way people in Lincolnshire view wildlife crime.
“Nick’s commitment to preventing wildlife crime is admirable and inspiring to the other wildlife officers he works with. The Wildlife Enforcer of the Year award is a tribute to Nick’s dedication in raising awareness of wildlife crime.”
Police bosses have also praised Nick.
Assistant chief constable Peter Davies said: “He has shown great commitment to listening to, and meeting the needs of, the rural communities we serve. He is also committed to conserving the wonderful natural frabric of our county and protecting it from harm.”
Police and crime commissioner Alan Hardwick said: “Nick is not only exceptionally good at his job, he is well liked by everyone he comes into contact with.”