Annual Trustees Report - 2013


Trustees present - Dr PP Lynch, George Pollock, Bill Frame, Ian Noble, Sam MacFadzen . Apol. Dr Gavin Boyd, Dr Ken Anderson, Andrew Garven

Senior Research Scientist - Dr Charles McSharry

Hosting Facilities - The Trustees thank the SHU and secretary Linda Brooks and staff for the usual excellent free hosting facilities provided at the AGM of the Trust in the SHU offices Wishaw, Lanarkshire

The minutes of the previous AGM were accepted by the Trustees and the Press Report on the RPRA BHW Show of the Year at Blackpool was approved for publication on the Website. The Show was as usual a very successful and busy research exercise in spite of the drop in numbers of fanciers attending due to the inclement weather. The Trustees were grateful to receive a cheque for £15,000 from the RPRA BHW Show Committee. We are grateful to the RPRA General Manager Stewart Wardrop and his efficient staff who together with the BHW Show Committee and staff ensured that the excellent Show location and the Research Stand's needs were freely provided.

Accounts ended 30th November 2012

The balance sheet ( copy enclosed ) was approved by the Trustees. It was as usual expertly presented by George Pollock hon. Treasurer who drew attention to the fact that the Trust had a deficit of £ 7.8K this year and £5.6K the previous year and thus highlighted the fact that financially we continue to live from year to year only. The RPRA BHW Show donation continues to be our major financial lifeline, without it we could not exist. We are also grateful for the regular and continued financial support from the SHU, SNFC and the NEHU and all individual fanciers and organisations who contribute from time to time, the most recent being Planet Bros on behalf of the Squib family trust We are grateful to I.A. Stewart & Company, Chartered Accountants, New Lanark for their continued free services and Independent Examiners Report which is a mandatory regulation by the Scottish Charity Regulator - Ref SCO13181 The free donation of their time, enthusiasm and expertise by the senior members of the Research Team and the Trustees continues at no cost. On behalf of the Fancy the Trustees wish to thank the Team for their continued voluntary efforts on our behalf. The voluntary partnership of British pigeon fanciers and their research team in the research of pigeon lung and the service they provide to fanciers on the funds available, continues to be a credit and testimony to the goodwill and charitable aims of British pigeon fanciers and their research team.

Pigeon Lung Advice Service

The Pigeon Lung advice service at Crosshouse Hospital Kilmarnock KA2 OBE continues , albeit on a negative budget under Dr Ken Anderson with telephone consultations and queries from fanciers and their doctors throughout the UK and beyond.. In most UK NHS hospitals the investigation results and in Scotland x-rays can now be transmitted electronically between specialists and consultants for review and second opinions. Dr Ken Anderson as one of our senior clinical consultants, continues to provide this facility at his hospital base for fanciers and colleagues with queries on pigeon lung - Tel.01563 827903

Research Lab Activities

The Research team attended the new SHU Show at Lanark, the NEHU Show at South Shields and the RPRA BHW Show of the Year at Blackpool. As a result of the ongoing deficit the research scientist's salary contribution has had to be capped by the Trustees at £ 15K ( from approx. £ 20 K ) Glasgow University pays the remainder. All the Show results should be out by now, if there are any queries our research scientist Iona Donnelly can be contacted at Tel.0141 330 1878 e-mail ( e-mail contact is by far the best method )

Summary of activities during 2012 from Dr Charles McSharry our cons. Immunologist. Biomedical Research Centre Glasgow University.

A) Lab results and procedures from Lanark, South Shields and Blackpool Shows
B) Joint study with Prof. Paul Blanc on pigeon fanciers lung component in cases of undiagnosed lung disease in California.
C) Update on low vitamin D results in pigeon fanciers and preparation for a publication
D) Generic report on immunology of pigeon fanciers lung
E) Current relevance of ethics approval and maintenance of highest standards.

Therapeutic Phase of The Research

At the moment , and as we have long advocated, the best method of combating pigeon lung is still prevention of pigeon dust entering the lungs by the use of an appropriate mask, cap and coat whenever with the pigeons especially when cleaning out. The therapeutic phase of the research is however providing much hope for the future The use of Statins ( blood fat lowering medicaments ) appears to have a beneficial effect in pigeon lung and the relevance of vitamin D levels is unfolding. The therapeutic phase of the research continues to be an exciting and promising milestone in the search for a remedy for pigeon lung. The laboratory team under Dr McSharry have come across a molecule that attracts inflammatory cells into the lung and have also found a lung protein that is reduced in those fanciers showing a reaction to the pigeons in their blood test, both are exploratory tests but could be important and are deemed worthy of further investigation.

Service to the Fancy throughout the year

As well as the weekly pigeon lung advice clinic the research team continue to be available to the Fancy throughout the year as a free service for advice and support - by telephone, by e -mail and by further communications via our website The trustees approved the token payment of £2,000 to the research coordinators Ken and Jane Boyd for the administration and coordination of the data bases relating to the Show blood results also the activities throughout the year including managing the website and coordinating the responses of the team members to the frequent questions asked by fanciers and non fanciers on our website in the role as webmaster.

The new shatter proof blood packs resourced and purchased from Royal Mail have continued to be a great success. We sent out approx 100 to fanciers this year. They fulfill Health and Safety regulations both at home and abroad. We continue to provide the service of a free blood check for pigeon reaction in British fanciers and their families if there is a worry about health. The pack and blood test is free to all fanciers in the British Isles including Southern Ireland.

Thanks to all our supporters

The Trustees and Research Team are greatly encouraged and thankful for the support of British fanciers and their organisations especially the RPRA through their BHW Show of The Year, the SHU the SNFC and the NEHU for their regular annual donations and all the other pigeon fanciers and pigeon organisations who support us whenever they can. In truth this voluntary and charitable research activity by British pigeon fanciers and their research team continues to be unique in the international pigeon world and much envied in the scientific one. Our joint efforts on a limited budget enables us to continue to search for a cure for pigeon lung and in the same process strive to provide a service in support of the good health of all pigeon fanciers and their families. We thank you all once again for your vital support and wish all pigeon fanciers and their families good health and every success in the forthcoming racing season.

Yours sincerely, Dr PP Lynch chair BPFMRT