Birthday celebrations for donkey sanctuary

Scottish Borders Donkey Sanctuary founder Rosemary Dale with Shetland pony Toffee and Eddie the donkey
Scottish Borders Donkey Sanctuary founder Rosemary Dale with Shetland pony Toffee and Eddie the donkey
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The Scottish Borders Donkey Sanctuary at St Boswells is celebrating its 10th birthday with a party next Sunday.

Donkey adopters as well as volunteers, the charity’s four part-time staff and founder Rosemary Dale have all been invited.

Mrs Dale of the Donkey Sanctuary in St Boswells with Toffee and Eddie.

Mrs Dale of the Donkey Sanctuary in St Boswells with Toffee and Eddie.

It was 10 years ago last month that Mrs Dale started the sanctuary with Helen Morrison, opening her 80 acres at The Holmes to the animals she used to breed.

“I’ve always liked donkeys: there is something very gentle and sweet about donkeys,” said Mrs Dale. “Word got around and that was it.”

The Holmes is currently home to 78 donkeys, two mules and other animals, and demand is so great the sanctuary is expanding into a nearby field.

“When people take on a donkey they don’t realise they are going to live a long time: we had one of 54. Once a week we get people asking us. The only time we have to say no is when they are stallions,” said Mrs Dale, adding: “We have a really good team of volunteers who (among other things) do the tours at the weekends: it’s so kind of them. The highlight of the last 10 years has been all the nice people we’ve met. Every penny people give to us goes to the sanctuary.”

For more information visit www.donkeyheaven.org.