Suffolk Prickles hedgehog sanctuary gets helping hand from volunteers
PUBLISHED: 14:04 04 September 2019 | UPDATED: 14:04 04 September 2019
UK POWER NETWORKS
Happy hedgehogs have a spruced up Suffolk refuge thanks to a group of volunteers.
The team from the connections department at UK Power Networks in Bury St Edmunds spent the day at the Suffolk Prickles hedgehog rescue centre in Earl Stonham.
They painted the new Hoggie Lodge plus cleared a ditch and prepared ground to plant bushes that will give the animals natural cover.
Hoggie Lodge will also provide a meeting space and place to work with volunteers wanting to have hands on experience of hedgehog care.
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So far this year, Prickles has taken in more than 130 hedgehogs to look after until they are grown, or well enough to be released.
The voluntary work was part of UK Power Networks' Donate A Day scheme which gives the company's 6,000 staff two days paid leave each year to volunteer in their local communities.
It was the idea of team member Rachael Raine, a keen environmentalist, after a report by the People's Trust for Endangered Species and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society last year said UK hedgehog numbers had fallen by about 50% since the turn of the century.
Rachael also obtained funding from her company to cover the cost of paint and brushes.
"Being a new charity they do need a lot of help and are trying to expand to meet demand," she said.
"They are located not far from our offices and the owners seemed very helpful, organised and willing to help us have a team day volunteering with them."
Paula Baker, who set up Suffolk Prickles, said: "The team worked really hard painting our Hoggie Lodge with its final coat of paint.
"What took one person a whole week to paint on his own took the team just a few hours, which was brilliant as we have so much to do we find it difficult to get these jobs completed.
"One volunteer was particularly amazing spending most of the day in the muddy ditch clearing it, then creating a small fenced area so that we can build up the bank with some soil and plant some more holly hedging.
"It has given us a real boost with our plans for the lodge and we are all really grateful for the time given up to help us."