‘Help us carry on rescuing animals’ - Hingham animal sanctuary turns to public for help as demand soars

PACT animal sanctuary are busy this time of year, especially with wildlife, they are currently build

PACT animal sanctuary are busy this time of year, especially with wildlife, they are currently building a new wildlife facility to cope with the animals brought in alongside the dogs, cats, rabbits, birds and other animals they look after. Pictured is puppy Bear the lhaso cross, Bear was bought by her owners in a car park, she had Mange and passed it onto the other family dog, Daisy, the owners could't afford the vet bills so brought the dogs to PACT. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2015

One of the region's largest sanctuaries has issued a plea to Norfolk's animal lovers – help us.

PACT animal sanctuary are busy this time of year, especially with wildlife, they are currently build

PACT animal sanctuary are busy this time of year, especially with wildlife, they are currently building a new wildlife facility to cope with the animals brought in alongside the dogs, cats, rabbits, birds and other animals they look after. Pictured is just one of the many hedgehogs staying at the sanctuary for treatment. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2015

As the number of animals needing rescuing rises and space dwindles, the People for Animal Care Trust (PACT) has turned to the public to encourage them to dig deep.

The charity, which turned 20 earlier this year, is currently home to more than 1,700 domestic and wild animals, including 200

cats, 17 pigs and 147 hedgehogs, most of which are housed on its 15-acre site near Hingham.

Many have been handed over by owners, found neglected, injured or abandoned and a handful are bought from suspect online sellers.

Bruce, the Staffordshire bull terrier puppy that PACT are hoping to rehome.

Bruce, the Staffordshire bull terrier puppy that PACT are hoping to rehome. - Credit: Archant

But George Rockingham, who founded the charity with wife Chris, said they are bursting at the seams, with waiting lists growing every day.

'The amount of work we are doing is increasing every day of the week and it is costing us hugely – we need help,' he said.

Most Read

'There is not another body offering a service like us. The demand is huge, the phone is constantly ringing with animals in need and we are doing all we can.' They are home to 51 dogs – which are not all kennelled at the sanctuary – and have about 300 more waiting for a space.

They include Bruce, a seven-month-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier who was removed from his family in December

over fears he was too boisterous – and faced being put down.

Despite the lack of space, PACT saved Bruce, and are now paying a private boarding kennels until a space at the sanctuary frees up.

'Sometimes we don't have much of a choice. We can't stand by when we could help the animals but there just aren't enough funds to help everyone,' Mr Rockingham said.

Next year, the charity will benefit from the completion of a new £60,000 building, which will house an aviary, hedgehogs and other animals.

The space has been funded by the charity's supporters, with the cost of construction lessened through the help of its many volunteers.

They and its full-time staff care for, walk and clean the animals, while manning an on-site animal ambulance which is on-call around the clock.

'Some of our staff can work all day here, go home and then be out in the middle of the night looking for an animal,' Mr Rockingham said.

But even basic running costs leave it difficult to make ends meet – raising staff wages so they are in line with the living wage has cost the charity an extra £40,000 a year.

And when asked for his message to the public, Mr Rockingham simply said: 'Help PACT. Help us carry on rescuing animals.'

Donations can be sent via the PACT website at http://www.pactsanctuary.org/ or by mail to PACT Animal Sactuary, River Farm, Woodrising, Norfolk, NR9 4PJ.

For more information call 01362 820775.

Do you know of a charity in need we should be writing about? Email lauren.cope@archant.co.uk