Holly Hedge

Providing shelter from harm and the promise of a brighter future

Please help us build our dogs a new home

An open letter from our Founder

To all our lovely friends and supporters, 

I am writing to you in the hope that you might be able to help the animals at Holly Hedge by donating towards the demolition of our very dilapidated and ancient kennel block so we can rebuild in a much nicer setting within our sanctuary. We have also at long last been granted planning permission to add an extra 5 kennels which will help relieve some of the pressure and take in more deserving cases. Originally we requested an extra 10 but were sadly refused as we are in a green belt area.

Holly Hedge is a well established reputable Animal Sanctuary which take in unwanted and abandoned dogs, cats and some small furries such as rats, rabbits and guinea pigs, plus the odd ferret or 2.

 We re-home approximately 800 rescues a year. 

  • Our current kennelling facilities are antiquated, crumbling, draughty and inadequate and are just borderline in complying with the new Animal Welfare Act. It would prove to be false economy to continue patching them up.
  • Some dogs can be in kennels for up to two years before they are re-homed and the existing accommodation is not conducive to the animals’ well-being.
  • The large dog kennels are deprived of light making them look dark and dingy.
  • The materials are inferior and enhance noise levels, whereas the design of the proposed new kennels allow for better acoustics resulting in far less noise. This will be beneficial for both staff and animals.
  • Hygiene standards will be greatly improved; there will be a better quality of life for our rescues, and accommodation will be far cosier and brighter as the kennels will be relocated and re-designed for optimum animal welfare.
  • The building would also look aesthetically more welcoming to public

 Holly Hedge is in more demand than ever, and last year we took in 33% more unwanted and abandoned animals. We receive numerous calls on a daily basis from people who can no longer care for their pets for whatever reason. We also take in numerous dogs on death row from council run dog pounds to save them from being destroyed after their 7 days are up. We do our utmost to accommodate and help as many as we possibly can and we never, ever refuse a pregnant or vulnerable animal. We are also the only sanctuary that provides 24 hour emergency service whereby we cover evenings and weekends. Indeed the Police and the out-of -hours Council Operator Service give the Sanctuary’s phone number to public calling in with stray dogs, as they do not provide a collection service. To date this year we have collected 78 stray cats and dogs, several of which have been heavily pregnant, and the situation gets worse every year. Needless to say any animal that is re-homed by the Sanctuary is always neutered.

Holly Hedge is a place for people too –

  • A place where people can go to ease stress and tension by walking a dog or cuddling a cat – where they get the warmest welcome with a wagging tail or purr of contentment.
  • Groups of people visit us with learning difficulties which is very therapeutic for them.
  • Elderly people in nursing and residential homes come to see the animals - their carers tell us it is the highlight of their week and how much they look forward to coming, and interacting with our rescues.
  • Educational visits from local Schools, Brownies, Cubs and other groups promoting animal welfare issues.
  • The Youth Offenders Team come to see the animals twice weekly, and their support workers cannot believe how motivated these young people become on their visits. One young girl is taking an Animal Care Course because of her rapport and love for the animals, and has now found her vocation in life.
  • We believe we provide a much-needed worthwhile service to the community, as well as to our rescues, which are always our first priority.


 The animals in our care mean the world to all of us at Holly Hedge, and we will always strive to do our very best to give them the best possible quality of life during their stay with us until they find their forever homes. 

It is with this in mind that we respectfully ask for a contribution in helping us achieve our goal of building much nicer accommodation for our rescues. The whole project will cost in the region of £650,000.00, but will make all the difference to our rescues health and well-being, and will be constructed to reduce their stress levels in a busy kennel environment.

Thank you for taking the time to read this appeal, all us of at Holly Hedge (both two legged and four legged) would be so grateful for your help and support.  

Yours hopefully,


Pauline Leeson

If you have visited us at The Sanctuary in recent years, you will probably have noticed that our main kennel block needs replacing (take a look at the pictures below if you've not had a chance to pop in lately). We have spent months planning, liaising with the council and with our architects to finally bring about the demolition of our existing kennel block and rebuild it with a far more suitable home for our rescues. Not only is it designed for optimum levels of animal welfare, but we will be able to rescue and rehome more dogs in need - and we need your help.

You can make a straight forward donation to our rebuild by sending your contribution to us at the Sanctuary, over the phone or via our online donation page right here on our website - please just be sure to tell us what it is for. If you fancy really getting into the spirit of the rebuild take a look at our ideas below, request a fundraising pack and be one of our very special New Kennel Build Fundraisers! 

Build our dogs a home – be one of our New Kennel Build Fundraisers!

Be part of Holly Hedge’s future and help us build our very deserving rescues a brand new home.

The pennies and pounds you raise all add up – and there are so many ways that you can get involved to help us raise the vital funds we need.

Quick and easy fundraising ideas you can do by yourself
Hold your own fundraising event with friends and family
Fundraising with your work colleagues
Take on a challenge

We can send you a Fundraising Pack to help you get started with your own fundraising event, with posters, sponsorship forms, stickers and helpful tips! It can help you get our charity message across, so you get raise more money and help us save more animals. To request a pack please just get in touch; email Katie@hollyhegde.org.uk or call us on 01275 474 719.

Our existing kennels. dilapidated, ancient and certainly not fit to see another winter through.  


 And here are the drawings for the new kennel block: 





 We can't wait to see the finished building and we know those rescues that will be in need of it's shelter will be very grateful to you all for your help in raising the funds to complete it.