Phoenix: abandoned with ongoing health needs
October 30, 2020
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COVID-19 Update

Horse wearing rug

Coronavirus Update – November 2020

We’d like to say a heartfelt thank you to each and every one of our supporters who have helped to sustain The Mare and Foal Sanctuary through this pandemic by donating and sending us messages of support.

As new national restrictions come into force this November to help fight coronavirus, we enter another period of difficulty.

We must continue our vital work for horses and ponies in need of welfare interventions and sanctuary for life through these challenging times.   Horses like Phoenix are counting on us.

Our Staff and Volunteers

The well-being of our staff, volunteers and supporters is paramount, because without them we can’t provide expert care to the horses and ponies in our care.

Some staff must travel to work – to provide daily care to our equines or to process your kind donations for example.  These staff are working in smaller teams and following COVID 19-secure guidelines.  The remainder of our staff are working from home or may be furloughed thanks to the help of the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

Our Sanctuaries

We are currently caring for 200 horses and ponies in our peaceful sanctuaries and fully expect the forthcoming winter to be tough.   In the first lockdown, we were fortunate to have good weather but the inclement weather we expect at this time of year and dark nights will make caring for the equines much more difficult.

All of our sanctuaries in Devon have been at full capacity throughout this pandemic and it is with regret that we are not able to accept any new admissions until we have reduced our numbers by successfully loaning out more horses and ponies through our rehoming scheme.

We continue to welcome expressions of interest from anyone interested in rehoming.  This is one of the most amazing ways you can support our charity and over 450 horses and ponies already benefit from this scheme.

We continue to provide advice, support and routine visits to our existing and potential carers virtually.

Advice and Support

We have helpful advice about caring for your horse or pony during this latest lockdown, including checklists and other handy resources created by our experts here at the Sanctuary.

If you are concerned about the welfare of a horse or pony, please call us on 01626 355 969 or email  We offer no shame advice and wish to improve the welfare of the equine concerned in every situation.

Our Education and Therapeutic Activities

As an alternative education provider, we’re awaiting further advice from the Government on whether we can continue to provide our equine assisted learning and therapeutic programmes for children and young people at our Sanctuaries, whilst following COVID-secure guidelines.

Our Supporter Services

If you have recently donated to our calendar or newsletter mailings, thank you so much.  As our staff are working in smaller teams, it is taking longer for us to process postal donations at this time, but we will get to it as soon as possible and it will be very much appreciated.

If you need to contact our supporter services team, please call 01626 882 660 or email

Our Charity Shops

Our charity shops in Babbacombe, Bovey Tracey, Kingsbridge, Newton Abbot and South Brent will be closed for the duration that the national restrictions apply.  We hope you understand that we cannot accept pre-loved goods at this time at any of our shops.

We are offering a click and collect service from our Reuse and Recycle Centre on Brunel Road in Newton Abbot and from our charity shop in Kingsbridge.

We continue to sell pre-loved goods through our Ebay for Charity page.