"The Great WT", as he is affectionately known, was a regular in the Top 16 World Ranking players for well over a decade and is one of the top record breakers for the highest number of 147 breaks in the history of snooker (190), earning him his recognisable nickname "Mr Maximum".
Willie Thorne is now using this clout as a well-respected public figure to speak out for maximum benefit for animals and is the latest figure to back Our Best Friends campaign.
Willie said: "Dogs and cats are much loved members of millions of households across the UK. So it is deeply upsetting
to think of all the ones who don't get to enjoy the fun of a family home but instead only know the suffering and loneliness of life inside a laboratory. That is why I am joining the BUAV Our Best Friends campaign to call on the UK Government to end the use of cats and dogs in experiments."
Dogs and cats share our homes and our lives. 23% of British families now include at least one dog, and around 19% of us have at least one cat. Yet each year hundreds of cats and thousands of dogs are harmed in cruel experiments in the UK. They endure a life of misery caged in laboratories where they may never see the sky or feel grass under their paws. These animals are not protected by the same law as domestic family dogs and cats, meaning researchers can carry out experiments on them which may inflict severe suffering and harm.