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When the news broke of the COVID-19 restrictions Lyn Friel, the manager, was oblivious. Spending the majority of time caring for the animals and responding to people’s calls keeps her so busy that the outside world has a hard job breaking in. The outside world wasn’t going to be held at bay forever though and on Tuesday the twenty-fourth of March Crosskennan Lane Animal Sanctuary issued a statement to the public that it was officially in lockdown.


“We can’t take the risk that any of our dedicated staff and volunteers may fall ill and therefore be unable to care for the animals at the sanctuary; of which currently there are over one hundred and twenty.”


At the time of closing, we were in the middle of volunteer training, fundraising and the building of a new sanctuary stable and shelter to house some of the sanctuary’s shetland population. All had to be put on hold; among some of our normal daily activities like rehoming and providing animal visits to the local community.


Immediately we saw losses of income and other donations of food and bedding, that would normally be coming in as results of bag packs, coffee mornings and other activities. We had to cancel upcoming events and sadly ask some volunteers not to attend.

The office is being manned from those who are staying at home where possible, while the yard staff and long term volunteers continue to provide care while following guidelines of social distancing and handwashing. Life must go on at the sanctuary, we do not have the option of closing the gates up and working from home. Without the staff and volunteers, the animals will suffer. Without people’s support, we cannot continue; and that is a terrifying thought that is plaguing us more and more as the days continue.


The team has been working hard with various supporters doing whatever they can to help provide funds; from a print at a home colouring book to the launch of our Online Pet Show. Our social media volunteer has been helpfully translating all the animal’s daily fun ‘diary’ entries on our social media pages to keep the community engaged and informed, not just about the sanctuary but the current news too. 


On top of the fundraising activities, we are still working behind the gates on saving lives, with daily calls and emails regarding welfare, abandoned animals and animals needing to be rehomed at this time. We are doing our best to resolve as many cases as we can through intervention and advice where suited.


These are strange times for all, but one thing is sure, we will do our utmost best to support every single animal we possibly can. 


We need help more than ever, in a time where sadly the world is difficult for everyone. There so many ways you can help us and you can learn more by visiting our Website - or emailing 

You can keep up to date with all our news on Instagram and Facebook too.


Remember to enter your pets in our Online Pet Show! - learn more by visiting our website, our Facebook page or emailing All entries must be in before 5 pm on 30th April 2020 to be counted for the final judging. All animals welcome!

In response to COVID-19 the One voice for Animals UK Appeal was launched to help connect small charities in need of help in this difficult time with support and the much needed donations to keep animals in the UK safe and well.

Learn more by visiting

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