Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 9°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Gallery: RSPCA centre in Martlesham cares for creatures great and small – and it is the support of the public helping that to continue

10:07 10 May 2014

Feature on the work done at the RSPCA centre in Martlesham. Pictured with Kez the dog is Tom Patrick.

Feature on the work done at the RSPCA centre in Martlesham. Pictured with Kez the dog is Tom Patrick.

Tucked away on the outskirts of a Suffolk village stands an RSPCA centre where animals both big and small are cared for and, in some cases, rehabilitated after being mistreated or neglected.


Last year 500 animals which were based at the Suffolk East and Ipswich centre in Martlesham were rehomed, including dogs, cats and smaller animals, such as rabbits.

Tom Patrick, the centre’s acting deputy manager, has been working with the RSPCA in the area for the last eight years.

Walking through the centre’s grounds, peeking in on the animals that currently call it home, his enthusiasm for the job is clear to see.

“I love it here,” he said.

“You never know what’s going to happen on a day to day basis but it can be very emotional and strenuous dealing with the difficult animals coming through.

“They could be coming in with health problems, they could have bad skin and they could be really underweight.

“There are also people who are struggling with their animals.

“Sometimes you think you have seen your worst one but they come into the centre and we rehabilitate them, get them healthy and re-home them.

“It can be distressing but the reward of it is at the end of it, you are able to re-home these animals to their best suited homes.

“It is also seeing the improvement that is great. Whatever the scenario, it is great seeing the change in them and we can work with them and improve their life to a certain degree and find the best home for them.”

The group has been based in Mill Lane in Martlesham since 1977 but the branch itself has operated since the 1930s.

It is not just the “regular” pets that are taken in, however.

Currently at the centre is a baby blackbird, which is due to be taken to the RSPCA wildlife centre in East Winch, Norfolk, when it is strong enough and other animals such as ferrets and chinchillas are based there.

Other creatures you would not expect to run into during a walk through the countryside are also often brought in.

Mr Patrick added: “We take in wildlife as well. That is more of your birds that need hand feeding and the occasional grass snake – things like that.”

The work done at the centre has often been highlighted, particularly when a pet has been mistreated.

But it relies on the generosity of people in Suffolk.

This branch is licensed by the national RSPCA but is self supporting.

Last year, it needed close to £500,000 to run its services and continue to support the animals, but due to a shortfall in funding, it had to dip into its reserves to make up the funds.

In its latest newsletter, the group has admitted that is unsustainable and that is why it is so important it runs different charity evenings and runs schemes to boost its income.

Making the public aware of its work is also vital to this.

The work is bolstered by a strong core of volunteers but it is vital that funds continue to come in so the help it has provided for decades can carry on.

Mr Patrick added: “We are a locally funded group so we receive no funding from the national RSPCA, no lottery grants, we are funded by the local community.

“The more we raise awareness and get in touch with the local community, the more animals we can rehome.”



Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Highpoint Prison in Stradishall, Suffolk.

A BB gun and ammunition were found by an inmate at a prison in Suffolk.

Emergency services at the scene of the crash in Needham Market

Emergency services were called to a collision in High Street, Needham Market this afternoon.

East Anglian Air Ambulance

A chimney sweeper remains in a critical condition with spinal injuries after falling from a roof in Combs yesterday.

Will  Ian Cumming be crowned Bake Off Champion 2015 tonight?

Tonight marks the grand final of the Great British Bake Off and viewers will watch as Ian Cumming, Nadiya Hussain and Tamal Ray battle it out for the Bake Off crown.

Hattie Lewis holding 'Mr Ted' 
He went missing on Wednesday, September 30

A desperate mum is calling on the residents of Sudbury to help her find a missing teddy bear belonging to her four-year-old daughter.

Call for tightening of UK border controls

Suffolk’s “horrified” Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) has demanded EU border control reforms after a convicted paedophile banned from the UK was jailed again for returning to work with teenagers.

Stock image.

Fifteen tonnes of concrete blocks fell out of a lorry after it crashed in a ditch in Suffolk.

Newborn baby

Expectant fathers can now be on hand to comfort their partners during early labour in a move to reduce stress and anxiety for mums-to-be.

solar panels

Proposals to install solar panels on 2,000 council homes across Ipswich have been abandoned after the Government announced it was changing the tariffs paid for renewable energy.

BBC reporter Kim Riley and his cameraman Shaun Whitmore experienced problems with their car's remote locking on a visit to Lowestoft. Photo: Shaun Whitmore.

An interfering mobile phone mast could be the reason why Lowestoft residents are facing a mysterious problem with locking their cars remotely, a motoring organisation has said.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages