Animal welfare

Mike Gibb is an Aberdeen writer and animal welfare campaigner

Mike Gibb could never be accused of sticking to one niche.

As an author, playwright, historian, animal charity campaigner and avid sports fan, the Aberdonian has brought to life all manner of previously hidden stories, hailed unsung stalwarts of football – with the help of Sir Alex Ferguson in one of his works – and defended the Doric language in the process.

Mike, whose books include Forgotten Heroes and Heroines of the North-East, became fascinated with characters such as Lorna Moon, the Strichen-born woman who was so disappointed with a first trip to the movies that she wrote a letter from complaint to the director. Cecil B DeMille – and when he responded asking if she could do better, she moved to the US and started scripting for Greta Garbo.

Mike Gibb, author of Forgotten Heroines of the North-East. Photo by Kami Thomson/DCT Media.

A pioneer in her field, Lorna also outraged her former friends and colleagues and Mike wrote the play Doorways in Drumorty based on the book which made her an outcast in the community where she grew up, driving many locals to remove her from history.

When not busy researching his latest project or playing the keyboard, Mike has been heavily involved in animal welfare. Many years ago he volunteered at the Grampian Dog Sanctuary near Huntly where he met other like-minded people and together they started DAWGS (Dog Action Working Group Scotland) which continues to thrive and will soon celebrate its 30th anniversary.

These DAWGS are raising a lot of money

In 2010 he discovered the Bianca Dog and Cat Rescue Shelter in Sesimbra, Portugal and was so impressed with the dedication and selflessness of the volunteers who run the place that he asked if he could help raise essential funds.

His offer was accepted and he set up a Scottish charity called Friends of Bianca which raised substantial sums of money.

Mike Gibb helps raise money for animal charities.

Several years ago he stepped back from day-to-day running of the local charity to focus on his work as a global Bianca ambassador and was saddened when he learned that Friends of Bianca officials had been forced to make the decision to close it for health and other personal reasons.

Mike acknowledged that the loss of support from Scotland would have been a blow to the shelter which currently has 400 dogs and 100 cats in its care.

A mission of mercy in Aberdeen

So he decided to come to the rescue, and in June Bianca Friends was officially registered as a Scottish charity. It’s a cause close to his heart and the new organization will make their first public appearance alongside three other local groups at the Charities Joint Christmas Fair at the Airyhall Community Center in Aberdeen on October 22 and, one week later will be performing at DAWGS Christmas Fair at Craigiebuckler Church.

Anyone interested in learning more about Bianca Friends or getting involved with the association can contact Mike at [email protected]

Shedding light on Strichen-born writer Lorna Moon who lit up Hollywood

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[Mike Gibb is an Aberdeen writer and fervent animal welfare campaigner]