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Aberdeenshire horse sanctuary reopens to the public after over a year

World Horse Welfare’s Belwade Farm rescue and rehoming centre. Photo: World Horse Welfare
World Horse Welfare’s Belwade Farm rescue and rehoming centre. Photo: World Horse Welfare

World Horse Welfare’s Belwade Farm rescue and rehoming centre in Aberdeenshire is reopening to the public after being closed for more than a year due to the pandemic.

At the centre, visitors can meet horses who are receiving specialist care, undergoing rehabilitation and finding new homes through their rehoming scheme.

World Horse Welfare is an international charity that works to improve the lives of horses worldwide through education and campaigning for better care.

Though the centre has been closed to the public throughout lockdown, their work has never stopped.

Lisa Gardiner, promotion officer for the centre, spoke of how hard-working teams have been taking care of and rehabilitating a large number of horses.

She said: “Everyone at Belwade Farm is getting excited to welcome back familiar and new faces when we reopen.

“Whilst we have been closed the yard have been busy helping a large number of rescues, rehabilitating them ready to go to new homes.”

World Horse Welfare’s Belwade Farm rescue and rehoming centre.

Belwade Farm is home to a wide range of horses and ponies.

As well as getting to know them, visitors can follow nature trails from the farm which meander through nearby woodland and along the River Dee.

Supporting the charity

The closure has also enabled the team to work on their popular licenced restaurant, which is now going by the name of Highlands Bistro @World Horse Welfare.

Ms Gardiner said: “We have a wonderful herd of horses and ponies, including some gorgeous foals, just waiting to see you all again and don’t forget that our bistro will be open for a drink and a bite to eat after you explore our new walks out amongst the fields. We all look forward to seeing you soon and we have some exciting upcoming events too.”

The bistro not only offers visitors a wide range of options for lunches and coffees, but also glorious views out over the surrounding Royal Deeside landscape.

They also aim to support local businesses by using their produce as much as possible.

World Horse Welfare’s Belwade Farm rescue and rehoming centre.

A visit to the bistro is a way of visitors doing their bit to support the charity.

Ms Gardiner said: “By choosing to dine in our bistro you are in turn supporting the work of the charity as all profits made go directly to helping horses in our care.

“People like to support charities in different ways and knowing that even by enjoying a cup of coffee with us you are helping the animals in our care is a real bonus.”

The centre will reopen on August 18 and visitors are asked to book their trip in advance.

A small fee has also been introduced to help the centre recovery from a drop in donations due to the pandemic.

All funds raised will go towards maintaining and improving the centre and its resident horses.

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