Celebrity portrait photographer Andy Gotts has created a series of stunning images of the UK's most famous faces - and their dogs
The world-renowned photographer has teamed up with Guide Dogs and its A-list supporters to shine a light on the stars’ most loyal fans.
Simon Cowell, David Walliams, Tilda Swinton and Fiona Bruce were among the celebs who posed with their pooches to celebrate the charity’s 90th anniversary and help launch the 2021 Guide Dogs Appeal to fund life-changing services for people with sight loss.
David Walliams, who was photographed with border terriers Bert and Ernie, said: “Guide Dogs is such an amazing charity and is one of the first charities you hear about as a child.
"My dogs mean everything to me so I can only imagine the incredible bond a person has with their guide dog.
"I’m delighted to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the first four guide dog partnerships and please get involved with the Guide Dogs Appeal, if you can, to help fund the next 90 years.”
The UK’s first guide dog partnership qualified in October 1931 – and at any one time the charity is responsible for 8,400 puppies and dogs.
Andy Gotts, who is famous for his portraits of Hollywood icons such as Paul Newman and George Clooney, volunteered his time to photograph the dog-loving celebs as part of a range of activities Guide Dogs is holding to celebrate its 90th anniversary.
Andy said: "Needless to say, for my career, sight is important, so I have always thought that helping a charity like Guide Dogs that supports people with a vision impairment is something I would love to do."
Other celebrities photographed include Eamonn Holmes, Sir Derek Jacobi, Jim Carter and Imelda Staunton, Beverley Knight, Dion Dublin, Russell Watson, Jason Watkins, James Martin, Martin Clunes, Chris Packham, Lee Mack, Nicky Campbell, Richard Arnold, Phil Daniels, Jess Impiazzi and Wendi Peters.
English actor Phil Daniels said: “My dog has been very important in my life. I lost my partner nine years ago to cancer when Chico was a young dog and he has been my companion ever since and is 14 now and still going strong.
"He’s a Spanish stray that needed looking after. I tell people he’s a black Russell. Me and Chico think that’s funny.
“I think the Guide Dogs charity do an amazing job raising awareness, funds and sponsorship getting the message across that we need more guide dogs.
"It takes a lot to train a guide dog and the shorter the waiting list for a dog for a blind person the better so PLEASE help.”
The photographs were released as the charity launches its annual Guide Dogs Appeal, which is based around the theme of ‘90’.
Guide Dogs is urging supporters to take part in light-hearted fundraisers with friends, colleagues and in schools across the UK, whether it’s a 1990s-themed party, walking 90km or baking 90 cakes.
National community fundraising
Pam White, national community fundraising campaigns manager, said: “We’re so incredibly proud of what we’ve achieved over the past 90 years.
"This October, we celebrate 90 years since our first four dogs changed those first four lives.
"Since then, we’ve been there for people with sight loss and those around them – every day and every step of the way.
“As we’ve grown, so have our services, provided by brilliant and dedicated people working alongside our fantastic dogs.
“Sight loss isn’t going away. But neither are we. With new services, new technologies and our amazing staff, dogs and supporters, we plan to double the amount of people we help by 2023, helping them to help people with sight loss live actively, live independently and live well.”
To celebrate Guide Dogs 90 Appeal, and to help fund its life-changing services for the next 90 years visit: guidedogs.org.uk/guidedogsappeal
STARS AND THEIR DOGS PHOTOGRAPHED TO CELEBRATE GUIDE DOGS 90 APPEAL
David Walliams with Border terriers Bert and Ernie
Simon Cowell with Squiddly, Diddly, Freddy and Daisy
Tilda Swinton with Springer Spaniel Louis
Jim Carter and Imelda Staunton with Molly - a rescue dog, Cairn Terrier cross
Beverley Knight with rescue dog Zain from Spain
Dion Dublin with Bullmastiff Maggie
Eamonn Holmes, with rescue dog Maggie
Fiona Bruce with Irish Terrier Molly
Sir Derek Jacobi with Irish Terrier Daisy
Russell Watson with Muffin the Shitzu
Jason Watkins with Georgie
James Martin with a Cocker Spaniel called Cooper, and a little Lhasa Apso called Ralph
Martin Clunes with Bob Jackson, a Cocker Spaniel; Jim, Parson’s Jack Russell; Penny, Jackahuahua and Heidi, a Cocker Spaniel and Bob Jackson’s mum
Chris Packham with Miniature Poodles Sid and Nancy
Lee Mack with silver Labrador Ludo
Nicky Campbell with Westies Maxwell, Misty and Maisie
Richard Arnold with Cockapoo Clemmie
Phil Daniels with Chico
Jess Impiazzi with Guide Dog Witchert
Wendi Peters with Springer Spaniels Edie, Dorothy and Ted