22 August 2013 You are here:

Star Pig-Napped From Charity

The star guinea pig of Hadleigh Farm's Rare Breeds Centre in Essex has been stolen from its enclosure.

The Salvation Army is appealing for help from the public after one of the most popular inhabitants of its rare breeds centre in Essex was kidnapped .

‘Sunbeam’ the guinea-pig was taken from her home in the enclosure at Hadleigh Farm, near Southend, which she shares with her daughter Samphire, on Tuesday 13 August 2013.

The two year-old brown and ginger guinea-pig was a very popular addition to the centre after she was rescued 18 months ago.  

Rare Breeds Farm Manager Emma Sayer said: “We’re all very worried about Sunbeam. Being taken away from her daughter and home will be extremely distressing and upsetting – her daughter, Samphire, who is very shy is also lost without her mum.

“Sunbeam is our friendliest, most vocal guinea pig and is the star of our animal talks and visits. She’s a rescue guinea pig who settled into her new Salvation Army home well. If anyone has any information or can bring Sunbeam back, we’d be so pleased to see her again. Staff, visitors and Samphire miss Sunbeam very much.”

Hadleigh’s Rare Breeds Centre is found on The Salvation Army’s Hadleigh Farm site. The site was first developed some 120 years ago when Salvation Army founder William Booth commenced his Darkest England Scheme. People Booth referred to as the “submerged tenth” were helped – in some cases rescued by Salvation Army members – and offered work and shelter. The farm provided employment – and food and lodgings for labour – to any person willing to work, irrespective of nationality or creed.

Emma added: “The Salvation Army’s Rare Breeds Centre has a wide variety of different and wonderful animals living on the farm and we encourage our visitors to take plenty of photos, learn about the breeds and even feed our animals with special feed. In our rabbit barn, we have rabbits, guinea pigs and chicks for our visitors to feed, although they are not allowed to pick them up.”

If anyone has any information about Sunbeam the guinea pig, please contact Emma at the farm on 01702 558 550 or email emma.sayer@salvationarmy.org.uk

Notes to Editors

Today, Booth’s original vision continues to impact the local area in the form of a farm, rare breeds centre and training centre. Lives continue to be transformed as staff work with trainees with special education needs to serve the public in the tea rooms and support trainees as they gain important life skills through a developing educational programme. The Salvation Army site was also the venue for the 2012 Olympic Mountain Bike event.

For more information about Hadleigh Farm visit www.hadleighfarm.org.uk


Media Office Claire Anderson on 020 7367 4582/07795 240842 or email claire.anderson@salvationarmy.org.uk or media@salvationarmy.org.uk