Anne Widdecombe urges action to save Britain's hedgehogs

Former MP Ann Widdecombe is launching the Wildlife Aid Foundation's 'Save Harry' campaign Credit: Press Association

Former MP Anne Widdecombe is calling on the Government to introduce a new hedgehog protection law to prevent the animals becoming extinct.

Miss Widdecombe is launching a campaign with the Wildlife Aid Foundation to try and reverse recent major declines in populations. Miss Widdecombe said:

"Sixty years ago there were about 36 million hedgehogs. Incredibly this number had plummeted to some two million by the 1990s and could now be down to under a million. We need to take action now before extinction becomes a very real prospect."

Wildlife Aid Foundation's founder and director Simon Cowell said a protection law and mandatory code of practice would force government agencies including Network Rail and the Highways Agency to treat the hedgehog's plight as critical.

Currently hedgehogs are one of more than a thousand species protected species, but they are not considered endangered.