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    • 19 Mar, 2021

    Guest Chat: Beatie Edney

    Actor Beatie Edney has appeared in over 60 film, television and theatre productions, most recently playing Prudie in TV series Poldark.

    Beatie is known for her love of animals and is a much-valued Mayhew ambassador. She chats with us about animal welfare, her own dogs (Mayhew rescues, naturally) and life during – and after – lockdown.

    What sparked your passion for animal welfare?

    I think it started when I adopted my dogs, Billie and Button. Our family has always had rescue dogs and cats, but I think it’s my passion for my own dogs that has led to me caring more about animals worldwide – animal welfare is important for a civilised society, isn’t it?Beatie Edney interview

    What for you is key to improving the lives of dogs and cats?

    Educating people that animals are sentient beings is a good start. And of course, ‘adopt don’t shop’ is a really important message. There’s a worrying trend of people buying and selling dogs online, when they should be speaking to rescue centres instead. Unfortunately, as long as there is a market for buying dogs there will be people making money from it. Animals are not a fashion accessory or a commodity.

    When did you first become involved with Mayhew?

    It was really when I decided to get a dog in 2012 and was matched with Billie, a pup who was staying with a wonderful foster family (just one of the things I love about Mayhew is your army of volunteers!). Then, in 2014, my mum [actress Sylvia Syms] adopted Bunny, a Jack Russell terrier, and in 2017 Yorkshire terrier Button joined our family. Between us we now have three rescue dogs, all from the Mayhew – how could I not become a supporter?

    Which aspect of our overseas work is of particular interest to you?

    What I love about Mayhew is you always look at the bigger picture. You’re brilliant in the local community and then you do all this amazing work overseas. When I hosted an event introducing supporters to Mayhew’s international work in Georgia, we heard how the team has introduced a spay and neutering programme which is bringing the free-roaming dog population under control and is helping to prevent the suffering that overpopulation causes. You also train overseas vets, contributing massively to the welfare of animals worldwide.

    You’ve found some novel ways to fundraise for us. What’s next?

    When I was filming Poldark, I thought if I could get signed scripts, books etc, I might be able to auction the items for Mayhew. I pestered all the cast and we ended up with quite a treasure trove of signed items, which we auctioned online, making £3,854. I also recently did the 2.6 Challenge, completing 26,000 steps to raise money for Mayhew. Every little helps, even if I’m just raising £100. I’ve had an idea so watch this space…Beatie Edney interview

    Once life returns to normal, what are your tentative plans for 2021?

    I had theatre work planned for the whole of last year and was due to start rehearsals for a new play just as lockdown hit last spring, then everything was cancelled. So, in 2021 I need a job, please! That said, one of the joys of lockdown has been being with my dogs. Billie and Button have got rather spoilt as we are never apart, which we all love!


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