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Racehorse Sanctuary Establishes High Dependency Unit with support of Sir Peter O'Sullevan Trust


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New Facility To Be Named The Peter O'Sullevan High Dependency Unit At The Racehorse Sanctuary & Rehoming Centre

The Racehorse Sanctuary and Re-homing Centre, a charity dedicated to improving the lives of thoroughbred horses (Reg Charity No. 1117361) and established for over 10 years, is thrilled to announce the pledge of a major grant from The Sir Peter O'Sullevan Charitable Trust. The grant will allow the planned development of the Sanctuary to proceed with a specialist dedicated unit for the rehabilitation of High Dependency horses, those that need extra time before being able to be rehomed.
The new facility will be named The Peter O'Sullevan High Dependency Unit in memory of a man who came to be recognised as 'The Voice of Racing'.

The late Lord Oaksey OBE wrote:
There can be few people in the world who have not at some time in their lives heard the “Voice of Racing” calling home the horses in The Derby or Grand National. It was a voice that not only communicated the thrills and excitement of racing, but which also told the listener that here was a man who cared passionately for the Sport. Behind the scenes however, few outside of racing’s hierarchy knew of Sir Peter’s charitable work in general and for animal welfare in particular.

His retirement allowed him to devote more time to this important work, always making himself available to the various charities involved, and tirelessly working to better the lot of the retired, injured, or ill-treated animal, forgotten by an uncaring or unconcerned former owner.

Jane Kindred, Chair of the Trustees of The Racehorse Sanctuary and Re-homing Centre said:
We are overwhelmed by this grant and we cannot thank The Sir Peter O’Sullivan Trust enough for their generosity. The Peter O’Sullevan Unit will enable us to help many more ex racehorses and give them the extra time and TLC needed to allow them a second chance in life. We are particularly pleased to be able to announce the news at our Fontwell Charity Raceday which celebrates the close of our 10th anniversary year.
This annual event is held to raise money and awareness for The Racehorse Sanctuary and is one of the key elements of our fundraising programme enabling us to continue to provide a safety net to Racing’s most vulnerable athletes.

Graham Oldfield, Co-founder of the Racehorse Sanctuary and Rehoming-Centre and Welfare Officer said:
What is the value of a fulfilled retirement for a thoroughbred equine athlete?
These wonderful animals have been bred exclusively to excite and entertain us with their racing prowess. In exchange do we not owe them lifetime care and the chance of second career whilst they are still capable of enjoying life?
At The Racehorse Sanctuary we certainly believe this to be the case. Despite all the good things the industry has done to enhance the welfare of former racehorses, our experience is that a safety net is still required, particularly for injured or difficult animals and I would like to take this opportunity to thank The Sir Peter O’Sullevan Trust for helping us provide this specialist safety net.
Our philosophy is to take each horse presented to us on its merits; if we can see a way to give it a quality of life, for life, we will try to find a way to do so, however long it takes – even for the more difficult cases.

Nigel Payne commented on behalf of The Sir Peter O’Sullevan Trust:
When we saw the Racehorse Sanctuary proposal the Trustees knew immediately that this was a cause we would like to support and it gives us enormous pleasure to help with this marvellous unit. Since Peter’s passing in 2015 we always consider what Peter would have thought and we were all convinced he would totally approve of this donation