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What we do

“Kindness, Care and Knowledge”

Registered Charity 1141831

The Mare and Foal Sanctuary was founded in 1988 by Rosemary Kind (pictured), who has rescued and looked after horses and ponies all her life. In 1992 the Sanctuary became a registered charity and we have since rescued and found loving homes for a large number of equines.


The Sanctuary’s aims are not just to rescue neglected, unwanted or abused horses but  to rehabilitate, retrain and eventually rehome them into loving, knowledgeable environments. We also focus on educating the public in matters relating to the welfare of horses and ponies.

In 2005 we finally managed to buy our own place, Honeysuckle Farm in Newton Abbot, which ended 17 years of renting properties for the Sanctuary. This has become our head office and rehabilitation centre and we’re extremely grateful to all of the kind supporters who made this possible.

We have since bought three more farms – our Visitor Centre at Coombe Park in Littlehempston near Totnes, South Manor in Newton Abbot, which is our retirement stables, and Upcott Park near Holsworthy, which is our newest site. The Visitor Centre is our only site open to the public and is open from the Easter weekend until November 1st.


We own over 300 horses and ponies of which most are cared for at loan-homes away from the Sanctuary (although we do regular home checks to ensure their well being).

As well as caring for our horses day to day, we hold several special events, such as our annual sponsored rides and summer show. We also attend local fundraising and profile-raising events such as summer fetes and agricultural shows.

To help us maintain a steady income we have charity shops in the South and East Devon areas. In addition to our regular full and part-time staff we benefit from a very helpful core of volunteers both in the stables and in the shops, without whom we could not survive.

We also work proactively with other equestrian groups and charities as well as the local and national media to raise awareness of current equine issues, such as the UK equine crisis.


In 2010 we were accepted into the National Equine Welfare Council (NEWC) with whom we help improve equine welfare in the UK. We were also delighted in 2014 when actor and national treasure John Nettles accepted our invitation to be the Sanctuary’s patron.

After years of tireless work, Sanctuary founder Rosemary Kind retired in 2013. The charity is now run by her children, Simon and Syra, who work closely with the board of trustees in helping us to grow, with a view to helping as many vulnerable equines as possible in the future.