Hadleigh animal sanctuary in desperate search for new home
The founder of an animal sanctuary and rescue centre in Hadleigh has launched an appeal for help in finding a new site with only weeks to relocate.
French’s Care Haven was set up by Jann Turner as a safe environment for sick and abandoned animals.
The centre, which has been based at French’s Farm in Pond Hall Road for 11 years, must find a new home after the land, which it leases, was sold to new owners, who plan to convert it into a caravan and holiday park.
Ms Turner faces a race against time to secure a new site for the charity’s four donkeys, 15 horses and ponies – in just six weeks.
“I have been running around like a headless chicken,” she said. “Time is ticking by and the push is on – it’s just so stressful.
“People are asking if the animals will have to be put down and it just makes me so tearful.”
Ms Turner has contacted farmers who could provide land for grazing, a barn and outbuildings; with the hope of securing a site within 15 miles of Hadleigh, but is not ruling out relocating further afield.
The charity was established after a surge in sick and abandoned animals were brought to the centre.
Ms Turner hopes to relocate the animals, which are old and require a lot of care, as soon as possible.
“We have a couple of younger ones, but most of them are in their 30s,” said Ms Turner.
“It’s like running a care home; they need medication at certain times.”
The centre has grown over the years, having started life in a derelict building, which required a lot of work to bring it up to scratch.
“I spent a lot of time and invested a lot of savings in repairing the roof,” said Ms Turner, who is a qualified equine and human physiotherapist.
The charity, which relies on donations, also provides a rehabilitation scheme for vulnerable people on the same site.
The project has helped people with a range of conditions, including mental health issues, disabilities and behavioural issues.
The sessions provide a therapeutic setting which involves caring for horses and donkeys, growing fruit and vegetables and craft workshops.
The scheme has proved a vital service for many people which Ms Turner is hoping will continue to operate.
“We have helped a lot of people and it’s a worry if we can’t carry on,” she said. “It makes such a difference to them.”
Other groups who have benefitted from the project include Leading Lives, which helps people retain independence, and Bramacare, a specialist inpatient centre for people with eating disorders.
Ms Turner explained that the horses and donkeys enjoyed the social interaction and were instrumental in helping vulnerable people.
“There’s something about horses, especially when they get old – they’re just so endearing,” she said.
A seven-year old stallion called Boris, who is very active and in good health, is in need of rehoming before the move.
If you can help Ms Turner, call 01473 833944 or email email@example.com.