The animal superheroes

They say that Britain is a nation of animal lovers, a statement that I can only wish is as good as it sounds, but unfortunately the UK has terrible statistics when it comes to animal abuse.

Fortunately we have some fantastic animal charities that provide care and shelter for both domestic and wild animals, one of which is our very own RSPCA Leeds, Wakefield and District branch who provide a safe haven in which abused, neglected and abandoned animals can be cared for, socialised and rehabilitated before finding a new home.

During a damp March afternoon LS26 Local had the absolute pleasure in meeting Sally Balmforth, the Head of Fundraising & Communications at the centre who told us more about the Wakefield & Leeds branch whilst giving us a tour of the fantastic facilities:

“The branch operates from our Animal Centre in East Ardsley, West Yorkshire. We can accommodate 15 dogs, 30 cats and 8 rabbits at any one time. All animals that come into our care are health checked, flea/wormed regularly, treated for sickness or injury if necessary, vaccinated, micro-chipped and neutered/spayed. This is all included in the adoption fee. 

We operate within the guidelines and rules established by the national RSPCA but we are a separately registered charity. We are self-funded, which means that we rely heavily on donations in order to continue our work in the local community. The money raised goes towards supporting animals in our local area. 

In order to help us fund our work, we operate four charity shops within the district. They are located in Wakefield, Rothwell, Bramley and Roundhay. We also have an online eBay shop. All money raised through sales in any of our shops goes towards our work with animals.

It is our aim to find every animal in our care a suitable, happy and loving home.”

How can you suport the branch?

Each year it costs our branch hundreds of thousands of pounds to keep our animal centre open and caring for the animals in our area. Each year it becomes increasingly more difficult to make this happen. In order to keep our centre in East Ardsley open, we require help from our local community through fundraising events, regular donations and charity shop income. 

Whether you are having a clear out and clearing out some unwanted items/clothes for us to sell in our shops, to sponsoring an animal or setting up a monthly donation – you would be helping the animals at our centre in East Ardsley. We currently have a free collection service, by which we will come and collect three bags or more of donations free or any furniture you may want to donate. Please call our Wakefield shop
on 01924 368306. 

For more information about how you can support us please visit our website ( or email our Head of Fundraising & Communications on

Do you provide training classes?

We hold puppy-training classes at our Animal Centre in East Ardsley, which is extremely popular. We also run breed meet ups or social play sessions, which are great for dogs who want to meet new dogs and make friends. If you are interested in attending any of our sessions, please email us on for more information or check out our website. 

And you also have your own grooming salon called Bertie’s Salon! 

Yes, we are very excited to announce we have recently opened a new Animal Grooming salon at our Animal Centre in East Ardsley, offering full grooms and Wash ‘N’ Go’s for dogs and cats. The salon is open every day apart from Wednesdays and Sundays when we are closed. All money we raise at our grooming salon goes directly towards helping the animals in our care. To make a booking, please visit our website or call us on 0113 253 6952 (option 2). 

You also have a large off lead area? 

We have a fully secure off lead area for members of the public to hire out exclusively for their dog/s. Whether you have a dog that is nervous, reactive or you just want to train them – this is the perfect space for them! Prices start from just £6 per half an hour and all money raised goes straight towards the animals in our centre. 

The Leeds & Wakefield branch will also be teaming up with LS26 Local with a new feature, which we are delighted about!

We are indeed! Each month we will bring you a cat or dog of the month who is looking for their forever home and their details will be published in the LS26 Local magazine as a monthly feature. Hopefully the exposure will help us to find homes for our animals with some of your readers!

And during these recent uncertain times any help will be greatfully received…

Absolutely, as you know, we are currently entering a very uncertain time with the current outbreak of the Coronavirus. We have so far had to cancel many events taking us into April, which will see a big drop in our fundraising income, which is something we rely on heavily. As well as this, our shops will see an impact and other services resulting in a significant loss in income. If you can help us out in any way at all in this difficult time by donating any food/toys for our animals, making a donation online, or over the phone – please do get in touch with us. Any donation would make such a big difference to our animals. 

To make a donation online, please visit our website: To make a donation over the phone, please call us on 0113 253 6952 (option 2)

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