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Fears for Horseworld's future

Union leaders say staff at animal rescue charity HorseWorld feel stressed and let down after being told their jobs are at risk.

Around half the workforce at the attraction in Whitchurch near Bristol are under threat of redundancy.

Managers say a fall in donations mean they need to cut costs. But the charity's supporters have told us they're worried about its future.

Eli-Louise Wringe reports:-

Painted ponies to be auctioned off

The auction runs until 9 December 2012.

A series of painted model ponies are being sold to raise funds for Bristol charity Horseworld.

Some of the statues - which were on display in Cabot Circus this summer - were designed by celebrities including actor Tony Head and snooker's Judd Trump.

The auction is being held online and people have until the 9 December to make their bids.

Horseworld to expand

Animal being cared for at Horseworld/ITV Westcountry

One of Bristol's oldest charities is hoping to build a new 5 million pound visitor centre. HorseWorld, based in Whitchurch, will need to sell off some of its land for housing to pay for the centre.

They're looking to gain permission for an anticipated 80 to 90 new homes, including the complete refurbishment of its listed buildings into homes.


Horse with an itch needs pyjamas

An animal at HorseWorld near Bristol, with an allergic reaction to midge bites, needs a protective pair of pyjamas to ease its suffering.

The charity, Horseworld, near Bristol says Gracie May's condition has worsened. It wants help to make a special pyjama suit.

Many horses which suffer from the condition wear rugs to try and prevent the bites.

HorseWorld is now appealing for help from rug sponsors or machinists who could help to create a special suit for the 17 hands high heavy horse.

Karen Hardwick, from the charity said:

"We have been struggling to keep Gracie May's itching under control.

"She currently has a rug that protects her when she is outdoors in the fields, but it's far from being a perfect fit and tends to rub against her. She badly needs something suitable for wearing indoors when she is in her stable here at Whitchurch, a pyjama suit would fit the bill.

"Her size is an issue too. She measures seven feet high from the ground to the top of her head. We've searched high and low but can find nothing on the market that would fit this gorgeous heavy horse."

– Karen Hardwick, visitor centre yard manager at Horseworld

Gracie arrived at the charity centre, which rescues, rehabilitates and rehomes horses, ponies and donkeys, emaciated and with hair missing in 2001. She has been nursed back to health and now lives at HorseWorld's visitor centre.