Fun day raises £2,000 – but more is needed to keep Northchurch pony sanctuary open

Max Plenderleith on a horse, with adult Louise Barber.
Max Plenderleith on a horse, with adult Louise Barber.

Children got the chance to ride cute ponies and horses during a fun day at a home for abandoned animals.

Two Oaks Pony Sanctuary was recently told that it will have to replace the stables at its Darr’s Lane base in Northchurch or face enforcement action.

Dacorum Borough Council says the structures were installed without planning permission and do not fit in with their Green Belt surroundings.

But sanctuary owner Carol Houlihan says the new stables will cost her £40,000. Her fun day earlier this month - which included a dog show, bouncy castle and more - raised £2,000.

Mum and regular visitor Bex Plenderleith said: “It was a great fundraiser for Carol, but only the start of what she needs to raise, so ongoing support is much-needed.”

A teddy bear stall at the event raised £175 - which has been put towards the £2,000 vet bill to treat mare Layla, who is mum to a 10-month-old baby boy Galaxy. Layla badly injured herself a few weeks ago.

To donate towards the sanctuary, call Carol on 01442 300872. To donate specifically towards Layla’s vet bill, phone 01525 222099.