Pollyanna is lending her support to the RSPCA Sheffield Branch Animal Shelter appeal, alongside Lord Roy Hattersley. The group need to raise £1 million to complete the construction of their new centre.
Pollyanna and Labour peer Lord Hattersley are pictured above attending a recent fundraising event – a dinner and auction which included two of Pollyanna’s pictures. Pollyana was delighted to meet another celebrity at the event – Lord Hattersley’s dog Buster, whose delightful diaries have been a popular best seller!
The Sheffield Animal Shelter has been on its present site for 100 years. The current kennels were built in 1964 at a cost of 20,000 and at the time were very modern. They are now outdated and in constant need of repair and attention. In 2000, the committee launched a Rebuild Appeal to attempt to raise the money needed to rebuild the Animal Shelter on its present site, it was estimated that it would cost around 1,500,000.
They have since discovered that the proposed route of the Sheffield inner ring road will take it right through the premises. The construction of the ring road commenced in late 2005 resulting in limited access to the shelter building by road. The Spring Street premises are subject to a Compulsory Purchase Order and they will have to vacate the premises at some point.
The RSPCA have now secured planning permission for a new site, where they plan to build a much better and more comprehensive animal welfare centre. The latest estimate is that the new Shelter and Clinic will be operational by February 2007. To achieve this they needed to raise £5 million – and most of this fundraising has already been achieved. However another £1 million is urgently required for the construction work.
RSPCA Sheffield Branch operates independently of the National RSPCA which is based in Horsham, Sussex. They are completely self funding and receive no financial aid from the National RSPCA, the government or our local authority. The Sheffield branch of the RSPCA is run by a committee of volunteers, the majority of whom have full time jobs elsewhere. The branch, given its current circumstances, costs over £8000 per month to run. This money has to be raised locally by volunteers through fund raising, donations and legacies.
They never put an animal to sleep unless it has proved to be aggressive or on veterinary advice. The Animal Shelter, when fully operational, is licensed to hold up to 80 dogs and 71 cats (plus puppies and kittens) although unfortunately in October 2005 they had to close the shelter due to the accessibility issues. They are still doing our best to help Sheffield animals by operating a waiting list and a network of fosterers.
To find about more about the new centre, or to donate to the appeal, click here
Pollyanna acted as honorary president of the North Derbyshire branch of the RSPCA for 15 years.