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Sanctuary provides a loving home for rescued donkeys


The Nailsworth Donkey Sanctuary has been a strong part of the community since 2015, when Tim Powell rescued Gussy the donkey from the Brecon Beacons, the sanctuary naturally evolved from the animal’s need for companionship, writes Megan Delaney.

Found abandoned in a farmer’s field with dementia, she was also going blind. Dedicated to helping donkeys in need, Tim found more, and there are now 12 at the sanctuary, which is run with the assistance of Tim’s partner, Dawn Cockell. All are rescue donkeys with physical issues, and additional needs. They have quirky and friendly personalities and are all open to adoption.

Donkey Sanctuary 1 | Sanctuary provides a loving home for rescued donkeys
Residents of Nailsworth Donkey Sanctuary took an interest in our video camera, and made friends with correspondent Megan Delaney. Picture: Matt Bigwood.

The sanctuary is reliant on donations from the community and has no government funding. Dawn and Tim have fundraised for the sanctuary by doing cake stalls and car boot sales, but due to Tim’s health, have been unable to do so recently. The sanctuary relies on an energetic team of volunteers, and the kindness of the community. Dawn and Tim expressed their thanks for the support provided by local businesses and people who have been so kind and giving over the years.

The donkeys all have their own unique stories. Mags the donkey was told she would never walk again, whilst Fudge and Treacle were rescued from Quedgeley. The roof had caved in on their shelter, and their feet hadn’t been attended too in years. Mags is walking again after her time with Tim and Dawn.

Donkey Sanctuary 4 | Sanctuary provides a loving home for rescued donkeys
Nailsworth Donkey Sanctuary.

Dawn highlighted how difficult the pandemic has been for the sanctuary: “Covid has been very hard, because we had no visitors during lockdown. This meant that we couldn’t afford to lay down pea gravel that would allow the donkeys to go outside during the winter. This is really important for them and has been delayed considerably as a result.”

Anyone wishing to visit or make a donation can make an appointment by messaging their Facebook page: Nailsworth Donkey Sanctuary | Facebook

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