Teenage champ Billy’s wild life

Billy Clarke with Steve Backshall
Billy Clarke with Steve Backshall

A teenage boy has won a special wildlife champion award for his dedication to helping animals.

Billy Clarke, 15, who is from Oakley, was given the award by Berks, Bucks and Oxon Wildlife Trust after setting up Oakley Animal Rescue Centre with his 14 year old brother Jackson and their friend Fergus Fleming in 2010.

The youngster received the award from popular naturalist Steve Backshall.

Billy, who is currently hiking in the Himalayas, set up the centre with Jackson and Fergus after the trio helped to rescue a dog and a cat in successive weeks.

All three boys, who attend Wheatley Park School, then began rescuing household animals and wildlife before taking them to Tiggywinkles Animal hospital in Haddenham. Jackson said: “When we find something Billy usually checks the wounds and sometimes applies a bandage.”

The trio have proven something of an inspiration to their friends and villagers, with a team of ‘officers’ aged 16 and below now helping out.

Billy and Jackson’s mum, Caroline Clarke, said: “It’s amazing. I don’t know where it’s come from.

“Billy has been inspired by Les Stocker (founder of Tiggywinkles).”