Up to 50 horses at a Sheffield sanctuary face being culled due to a funding crisis.
The Star reported the story of Mill House Animal Sanctuary at Fulwood this week, leading to a push for fundraising to plug its £30,000 financial black hole and save the 50 horses and ponies at its farm.
The sanctuary was set up in the 1940s - and The Star has delved into its archives and found a rich history of photographs of from the sanctuary through the ages.
Pat Hartley, aged 74, has run the sanctuary with her sister Jane for decades - and here are some phots of Pat and the horses through the ages.
One photo, taken in 1987, shows Pat with some of the horses and daughter Samantha. Others show a ‘gypsy pony’ and Pat’s Pet Lamb Looby Loo.
The sanctuary has struggled to keep up with a ‘glut of unwanted horses,’ which sanctuary co-owner Pat Hartley says is due to the animals being bred ‘irresponsibly’ and then abandoned, in the past few years .
It means that about 50 animals which live at a farm in Aston, Rotherham face being killed unless suitable homes can be found for them.
Read the original report here: http://www.thestar.co.uk/news/sheffield-sanctuary-in-crises-as-up-to-50-horses-face-cull-1-8013080|Sanctuary in crisis|read more}
Pat said: “Over the past few years there has been a glut of unwanted horses, which have been bred indiscriminately and irresponsibly, and have then been abandoned when the novelty of owning them and the cost of their food wears off.
“Mill House is going to have to close a farm where we keep 50 of our horses and ponies.
“Sadly, many of them will have to be put to sleep as we can no longer afford their upkeep. These animals have spent many happy years living with us and those which require medication will sadly be the first to go as we can no longer afford the drugs.
“We are going to try to relocate some of the young ones at our Thurlstone farm, but space and finance are limited.
“Pat added: “If anyone is able to offer a good home to any of our animals, please contact me, I will be very grateful.”
The sanctuary’s first act was to rescue a little pony called Dolly from a slaughter house.
Twins, Pat and Jane were just 6 years of age at the time Dolly was rescued and that was the beginning of their lifelong dedication to help ‘Animals in need’.
For many years the sanctuary was funded by the family, but in 1982 it became a registered charity and able to seek outside help.
Mill House has taken in all types of animals including dogs, cats, chickens, cows, ducks, pigeons, pigs, but its main concern has always been equines. On average, it has over 200 animals at any one time.
To donate, go to the sanctuary website here