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Eve Davies Meets HM King Charles III

Tuesday 27th June 2023 was a momentous day not only for the ProtectaPet team, but also its surrounding community of cat owners, customers, supporters, friends, family and for Staffordshire. 

ProtectaPet Communications Director and Co-founder, Dr Eve Davies, was invited to attend a reception held by HM King Charles III at Buckingham Palace for recipients of The King's Award for Enterprise 2023 - the highest official UK award for a British business to receive. The accolade is valid for five years and brings worldwide recognition for the company's pioneering approach to keeping cats safe outdoors. 


ProtectaPet was founded in 2014 by husband-and-wife team, Eve and Simon Davies, following the tragic loss of their own cat, Lola, in a road accident. With the support of local dignitary, James Thomas Leavesley DL, Vice Lord-Lieutenant of Staffordshire, ProtectaPet applied for the Queen's Award last September.  In April, they discovered that their application had been successful and the company would receive the first ever King's Award for Enterprise in Innovation.


Eve recalls her once-in-a-lifetime experience at Buckingham Palace: 

‚ÄėI¬†arrived at Buckingham Palace with Sara Williams, CEO of Staffordshire Chambers of¬†Commerce, which is the only other Staffordshire business to win this year.¬†When we arrived, we had to hand over our phones:¬†no¬†photographs were allowed at all.¬†It all felt¬†extremely strict¬†as we walked past the grenadiers. They were¬†mesmerising¬†in their motionless, stationary positions.¬†The King had requested to speak to businesses that offered¬†sustainability¬†or ecological benefits and I knew in advance that he had expressed an interest to find out more about ProtectaPet.

Eve Davies and Sara Williams

We were in Buckingham Palace for about two hours. I¬†didn‚Äôt¬†eat any of the canapes because I was too worried about getting poppy seeds stuck between my teeth!¬†First of all, I noticed Prince Edward, Duke of Edinburgh, approaching me. I was stood next to a lovely lady called Jess, from¬†Naturaw. When the Prince asked me what I had won for,¬†I started to describe our¬†concept¬†and explain cat fencing. He was quizzing me on whether the idea was to keep cats in or keep them out.¬†As I tried to explain the concept -¬†by absolute incredible coincidence and fortune - Jess to my right said, ‚ÄúI‚Äôm¬†actually¬†a¬†ProtectaPet¬†customer. My cat was injured¬†in a road traffic accident two years ago and he broke his pelvis. He¬†survived,¬†had¬†surgery¬†and made a full recovery. I purchased¬†ProtectaPet¬†fence barriers to keep my two cats safe.‚Ä̬†As she said all of¬†this,¬†my jaw hit the floor because I¬†couldn‚Äôt¬†have written up a more amazing testimonial for our product in front of¬†royalty!¬†It¬†wouldn‚Äôt¬†have stood in great stead for me to explain the merits¬†of our own idea. For a customer to be stood next to me at that time, explaining how much it changed their lives‚Äď that was incredible.¬†¬†

Eve Meets Prince Edward

 In Conversation with The Duke of Edinburgh

The room¬†was rapidly filling up with the¬†winners,¬†people in¬†official¬†uniform, security guards¬†and photographers. Cameras were flashing and I looked up to see the King's famous profile¬†approaching. It was just one of those awe-inspiring moments because we are all so familiar with his face,¬†but¬†he was¬†now¬†within ten feet and coming closer. There¬†were¬†many people in the room desperate to speak to him but his official¬†coordinator, dressed in a kilt,¬†cleared the way towards me¬†and a few others.¬†First of all, he spoke to someone about thermal imaging on the moon, then the¬†person¬†next to me¬†about biomass. Then it was my turn and he asked me about¬†ProtectaPet. His perspective was from the merits of an ecological benefit. He¬†explained¬†how pleased he was that we are¬†keeping cats in gardens and expressed his appreciation of the huge benefit to wildlife. I replied to say that ‚ÄúYes, we know that our product has many wide-reaching¬†benefits. We estimate that¬†for every¬†ProtectaPet¬†garden,¬†countless small mammals,¬†birds¬†and¬†reptiles are protected every year.¬†It‚Äôs¬†really difficult¬†to estimate,¬†but it might be as many¬†as a quarter of a million creatures every year that¬†aren‚Äôt¬†predated on.‚Ä̬†The King replied ‚ÄúWell, that is outstanding." He really congratulated me and told me to¬†‚Äúkeep up the¬†good work‚ÄĚ.¬†He shook my hand. The conversation¬†was¬†probably no longer¬†than 40¬†seconds¬†but my¬†kneecaps¬†were¬†shaking!¬†There was something¬†really moving¬†about that moment after years of hard work! It was an amazing experience.‚Äô¬†

 HM King Charles III

ProtectaPet Limited will be presented with the official crystal trophy and Grant of Appointment this autumn by The King’s representative, Ian Dudson, the Lord-Lieutenant of Staffordshire.  

We are beyond proud of Eve and Simon for their unwavering dedication and vision for ProtectaPet. Those of you who know them on a personal level will know that they make a pioneering, caring, passionate and creative team, deserving of this recognition. 

The King Approves of ProtectaPet