A record number of veterinary surgeons have been admitted to the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) Fellowship this year, joining the learned society in recognition of their contribution to veterinary science and practice.

Some 58 vets have been admitted this year out of a total of 65 applicants. Of those joining, 39 have been recognised for meritorious contributions to clinical practice; 14 for meritorious contributions to the profession; and five for meritorious contributions to veterinary knowledge.

Those honoured for meritorious contributions to the profession this year, include Scotland's chief veterinary officer Sheila Voas, former British Veterinary Association president Simon Doherty, Royal Veterinary College dairy medicine lecturer John Fishwick, Mike Jessop and Carolyne Crowe.

The RCVS Fellowship is a learned society whose key purpose is to advance veterinary standards by providing a resource of independent knowledge for the benefit of the veterinary profession.

It aims to do this by promoting scientific excellence, furthering professional skills and practice, and enriching the discourse about the importance of veterinary science to everyone.

Although the Fellowship was founded in the 19th century, it was relaunched with its new mission statement in 2016 and with three new routes to entry to reflect the breadth of veterinary achievement.

Since its re-launch, over 200 new Fellows have been welcomed on board, although this year has seen the most new Fellows in an individual year.

Prof. John Innes FRCVS was elected as chairman of the Fellowship Board, which governs the scheme, last year. He said: “The number of new Fellows this year is a real testimony to the depth and breadth of veterinary excellence that the Fellowship draws upon.

I am delighted to preside over a record number of applicants and our efforts to widen the appeal of the Fellowship and develop a clear strategy and direction of travel for the learned society has clearly paid off. I look forward to formally welcoming them later this year.

Dr. Mandisa Greene, RCVS president, added: “Many congratulations to all those who joined the RCVS Fellowship this year, it is a fantastic achievement and it can only help to enhance the status of our learned society, the veterinary profession and veterinary science in general.”