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Lowestoft police inspector's secret passion

PUBLISHED: 11:01 18 February 2011 | UPDATED: 11:01 18 February 2011

Police Inspector Sarsfield Donohue is also a volunteer at the FAITH Animal Rescue Centre in Hickling. Pictured with a 4 week old collie cross puppy.
PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

Police Inspector Sarsfield Donohue is also a volunteer at the FAITH Animal Rescue Centre in Hickling. Pictured with a 4 week old collie cross puppy. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY

© ARCHANT NORFOLK 2011

WHEN police inspector Sarsfield Donohue dropped into an animal rescue centre to look for a pet cat, he got more than he bargained for.

For as well as settling on two feline additions to his family – Jenny and Tess – he was recruited as as a volunteer.

Now, Insp Donohue, 41, finds himself moonlighting from his job in charge of Lowestoft’s police Safer Neighbourhood Teams to help Faith animal rescue in Hickling, in north Norfolk, a charity set up 15 years ago.

He said: “On my rest days, I take dogs out for walks, which is important because they are in pens during the day.

“I am also a home checker for a wide area covering Norwich and Lowestoft.

“When people come here looking for a dog or cat it is important to check they are suitable and their home is appropriate and that is done by visiting their address and talking to them.”

Urging other people to support Faith in the tough economic climate, Insp Donohue has even received the backing of colleagues at Lowestoft police station who donated £300 before Christmas from tuckshop profits.

Praising his efforts, the charity’s founder, Judy Simmance, said Faith started after they moved to the village and took in five dogs that had been dumped in the marsh.

She said: “We appealed for help to cover their vet’s bills and got more animals as well as money. It all took off from there.”

The rescue now has 40 dogs and 60 cats and relies on donations and legacies to cover its £100,000-a-year running costs.

Acknowledging the tough economic climate, she said: “We have just had to close our charity shop in Yarmouth that used to bring us £200 a week.”

Anyone wishing to donate money or join the rescue’s 20 volunteers is asked to ring 01692 598312, or visit www.faithanimalrescue.co.uk

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