Sunday 18 March 2018

President set to visit Donkey Sanctuary

PRESIDENT Michael D Higgins will visit The Donkey Sanctuary on Friday week, November 15, en route from Liscarroll Community Childcare facility and Respond where he will officially open a new walkway.

The Donkey Sanctuary, formerly known as 'The Restfield', was founded by ISPCA inspector Garrett Barrett in 1964 and has grown to be a landmark ever since.

When, in 1981, Garrett died his son Paddy took over. THen, in 1987 the Donkey Sanctuary Ireland was co-founded by Dr Elizabeth Svendsen of the Donkey Sanctuary Devon and Paddy's Restfield in Liscarroll.

From humble beginnings in 1987 the Donkey Sanctuary Ireland has grown to what it is today. 3,850 neglected donkeys and mules have been rescued from all over the country. 400 of these have been rehabilitated to suitable homes in pairs. At present the sanctuary has over 1,100 donkeys in care.

Knockardbane farm is open to the public all year, with over 40,000 visitors calling to meet with the donkeys. Admission and parking is free.

Meanwhile, Hannigan's Farm, which is not open to the public, incorporates the isolation and hospital/veterinary area. All of the new intakes and sick donkeys are cared for there.

There is 60 staff employed at the donkey sanctuary, assisted by dedicated volunteers.

"The visit of President Higgins is a wonderful opportunity for the Donkey Sanctuary to exhibit the work we do to protect donkeys from cruelty and neglect," said founder Paddy Barrett.

He said it is only through the generosity of the public that they are able to care for these defenceless animals.

If you should wish to volunteer please contact The Donkey Sanctuary on 022 48398 or email