'It's absolutely outrageous – I'm so angry, I'm so upset, we bring these cats down to what's supposed to be a sanctuary, where they're supposed to be safe'
A whole pack of hunting hounds in pursuit of both a fox and deer thundered through an animal sanctuary, displacing more than 60 terrified animals during their evening feed.
The pack of hounds tore through the Celia Hammond Animal Trust, which provides shelter for 130 rescued animals, many of which are unwell and or in the later years of life and difficult to rehome.
The shelter mainly cares for cats, 60 of which fled the chaotic scene as volunteers and police both battled to chase the pack of hounds away from the cats on Monday.
Celia Hammond with rescue cats at her 100-acre sanctuary in East Sussex (Harry Cockburn) SOURCE THE independent
The charity sanctuary in Hastings, Sussex, is still missing many of its animals that are believed to have fled into nearby woods to escape the hunt.
Volunteers described a “terrifying” scene as a whole pack of dogs ran through the area as the cats ate with “dogs running everywhere, completely out of control”, with cats “fleeing in all directions”.
“If anything has happened to any of my animals, there will be hell to pay,” said Celia Hammond, a former model, who runs the charity which bears her name. Celia Hammond Animal Trust has a number of centres across London and the South East, which looks after cats and finding them suitable homes to be adopted into.
The sanctuary in Sussex is home to 130 cats, who live there full time. Given the usual safety of its rural surrounding the cats are free to roam around the 100 acres of idyllic woodland and fields which surround the sanctuary.