Future looks brighter as RSPCA shelter runs at break-even

ON THE UP Branch manager of The Stubbington Ark Paul. Picture: Malcolm Wells
ON THE UP Branch manager of The Stubbington Ark Paul. Picture: Malcolm Wells

Shopping assistance scheme in Portsmouth to close down

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AN ANIMAL shelter that helps more than 6,000 animals a year has announced that it is breaking even after more than three years running at a loss.

The Stubbington Ark, in Ranvilles Lane, near Fareham, is an RSPCA shelter that caters for animals from cats and dogs to goats and other livestock.

Year on year the RSPCA’s Solent Branch is given £1.4m in order to run each of its services. But that money must be stretched across several different areas.

In 2013, Stubbington Ark operated at a deficit of around £250,000.

Solent area branch manager Paul Long-Collins said: ‘We’ve been operating at a deficit for several years now.

‘While things are heading in the right direction, it’s still difficult as our reserves are severely depleted.

‘We, like any other charity, operate on donations.

‘Things are definitely going to be tight this year but they are better than they have been.’

Mr Long-Collins said that in 2014 the Stubbington Ark managed to do better than previous years, but with the reserves of the centre being depleted, this hasn’t eased the strain left behind from the years of deficit and financial hardship.

The shelter operates autonomously from the rest of the RSPCA and so funding has to be secured to look after nearly 500 animals that can be on site at any given time.

Mr Long-Collins appealed for people to help the centre, especially as it would like to upgrade some of its facilities.

He said: ‘Due to the running of the centre at a deficit for so long it has been difficult to reinvest.’

Fundraisers for the shelter include a sponsored dog walk in September as well as the recent Hayling Island wag walk.

For more information go to stubbingtonark.org.uk.