During Owen Paterson’s recent visit, British Ironwork Centre learned the awful truth that African Rhinos could be lost forever within the next decade. Mr Paterson has taken on the important task of raising the alarm on behalf of the British Government who believes this must be stopped. He has recently returned from the Kenyan Bush after additional resources have been offered by the British Government to counter illegal poaching.
British paratroopers will help wildlife rangers with additional training in their everyday efforts to protect these wonderful creatures, and the British Ironwork Centre is determined to offer its support. To this end, a unique Rhino head sculpture was created by the company, which was presented to Owen Paterson, M.P, on Thursday 21st November outside the House of Commons at 10.45am.
In Photo from left, Clive Knowles – Managing Director of British Ironwork Centre, Middle - Rt Hon Owen Paterson MP - Secretary of State for Environment,
Food and Rural Affairs and Alfie Bradley – Sculptor at British Ironwork Centre.
Rt Hon Owen Paterson MP - Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Defra Secretary, Owen Paterson said, “"I'm really grateful to Clive, Alfie and everyone at the British Ironwork Centre, just outside Oswestry, for the extraordinary amount of work which has gone into this. It’s a wonderful and striking sign of our absolute determination to help bear down on this terrible trade. We currently lose one Rhinoceros every 11 hours because the horn is worth $65,000 per kilo and we lose an elephant every 15 minutes because the ivory is worth $2,000 per kilo.
I was in Kenya in early November and since I've been there a whole number more elephants and Rhinoceroses have been killed. This trade is worth about 19 billion dollars per year and this money feeds to extreme, violent terrorist groups. We are determined to work with a whole number of other countries to bear down on it. Whilst in Kenya we have arranged for our paratroopers to help train the rangers but, much more importantly in the long term, we're organising a conference at Lancaster House where we are inviting leaders from across the world, firstly to help with enforcement to bear down on the violent slaughter of these innocent animals, secondly to work with countries with a demand for the end product which is still very strong and finally to work out alternative economic activities and give long term prosperity to the countries affected. I'm really grateful to Clive and all of his team for this very, very striking sculpture to remind everyone of the horrors of this trade and the short time we've got to work as a generation to stop it."