A well-known equine vet was presented with the highest award by the Worshipful Company of Farriers on 27 March.

Denis Oliver, 95, received a standing ovation when he received the award of “Father of the Company” at the meeting of the Company in the Drapers Hall in the City.

The award has only been made once before in the last 100 years and was a total surprise.

Born in Lincoln in November 1919, Denis was educated at the City School in Lincoln and at Edinburgh University.

He is a past president of the British Veterinary Association, was chief veterinary officer at the Royal Show, was honorary vet at the Burghley Horse Trials and at Market Rasen racecourse.

Mr Oliver served on the Council of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and sat on the veterinary advisory panels of the Horse Race Betting Levy Board, Pig Industry Development Authority and the Meat and Livestock Commission.

He joined the Worshipful Company of Farriers in 1966 and was master from 1980-81, preceding the Company’s first female master, the Princess Royal, by three years.

At the Company he has been chairman of the examinations board and a representative on the Farriers Registration Council.

Mr Oliver instigated the presentation of a silver gilt medal to all diploma candidates who achieved honours and still continues the role today.

In 1994 he was endowed with an honour fellowship (HonFWCF) in recognition of his service to the Company, the craft of farriery and the welfare of the horse.

In 1989 Denis was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s birthday honours list.

He married Nance Coutts (desc. 2006) in January 1946 and has a son and daughter, both who are also members of the Company.

The Worshipful Company of Farriers is traditionally the Company for veterinary surgeons due to its links with equine welfare.

For more information visit: www.wcf.org.uk