Canines take the lead to fetch charity cash

WOOF Dog walkers get ready to start the annual 'Wag Walk' along Hayling seafront. Picture: Mick Young (13480-03)
WOOF Dog walkers get ready to start the annual 'Wag Walk' along Hayling seafront. Picture: Mick Young (13480-03)
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DOZENS of fundraisers and their four-footed friends enjoyed a day in the sun as part of an annual charity dog walk.

The eighth annual Stubbington Ark Wag Walk started at the seafront in Hayling Island yesterday under the blazing sunshine.

The event is held every year to raise money for the RSPCA centre in Ranvilles Lane, Fareham.

Dogs of all sizes were brought along to take part in the 1.5-mile walk, which started at the coastguard building on Sea Front.

Organiser Sandra Deaville, a fundraiser for the Stubbington Ark, said: ‘What’s great is we get all sorts of dogs, from the littlest one which is a dachshund to the biggest bull mastiff.

‘They’re all very well behaved and everyone has a really nice time, especially when the weather is nice and you can really enjoy yourself.

‘I want to say a big thank-you to everyone who came out to support us because it’s so important that we get their continued support.’

Last year’s event was beset by rain and driving winds, but yesterday the sun shone on those who gathered to take part.

The walk was launched by ITV presenter Kerry Swain and the mayor of Havant, Councillor Gerald Shimbart and his wife Cllr Elaine Shimbart.

Cllr Gerald Shimbart said: ‘This is a really good fundraising event and it’s good to see so many people turn up to support a good cause.

‘I like dogs although I don’t have one myself – I’m too lazy to commit to that many walks.

‘The Stubbington Ark is a vitally important cause because of all the hard work they do in this area.’

The route took the dogs and their owners from the seafront at Hayling Island along to the Inn on the Beach and back.

On of the dog walkers who took part was Leanne Smith, of Kings Road.

The 27-year-old was there with her Jack Russell, Flynn.

‘I’ve never been to this before and this time I thought I would come along because it was such a nice day,’ she said.

‘Flynn is a rescue dog so I know the importance of places like the Stubbington Ark and the work they do.’

At the end of the journey, walkers were rewarded with tea and biscuits – and a treat for their worn-out pets.