A CAT sitter from Bury has gained the support of an Emmerdale star for her national campaign.

Heléna Abrahams, who lives in Fairfield, appeared on television alongside Samantha Giles, who plays Bernice Blackstock in the ITV soap.

The 48-year-old was invited onto Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford's popular Channel 5 show, Do The Right Thing, to share her personal story.

In 2016, Miss Abrahams' cat Gizmo was cremated without her knowledge after being hit by a car.

Miss Abrahams has dedicated the last three years of her life to re-uniting dead and injured cats with their owners.

She has set up her third petition for a change in the law, and is calling on local authorities to scan dead cats for microchips and to inform their owners of their fate.

Samantha Giles has backed the campaign, even creating a video with her own pet cat Bob, urging people to sign the petition.

The award-winning actress said on television: "It is just awful. I'm so sorry for your loss, Helena. The most important thing is that out of this we can hopefully try to bring about a change in the law, if we can get enough signatures for the petition.

"Having an animal is having another member of your family but unfortunately cats are not given the same status as dog are.

"You need to know if your cat has died, and it is so easy to scan them."

The petition — Gizmo's Legacy — has accrued more than 47,000 signatures. However, 100,000 signatures are required before April 1 if the issue is to be debated in Parliament.

Miss Abrahams has also launched the Facebook group Deceased Cats UK and IRL to unite people whose cats have gone missing and help owners to find their beloved pets.

Miss Abrahams said: "I lost Gizmo in the most horrendous way. My cat was chipped but not scanned and just disposed of like a piece of trash.

"We need the whole country behind us because if we don’t get the signatures, councils up and down the country will carry on throwing our beloved fur babies away into landfill like trash, leaving owners looking for days, months or years, and leaving them heartbroken without any chance of closure."

To sign the petition, visit https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/229004.