Wet and windy at the Wokingham Winter Carnival

Once again this year we hosted a stand at the Wokingham Winter Carnival. While we met many pet owners interested in our practice, the main goal was to raise money for the National Animal Welfare Trust, in particular for Trindledown Farm Retirement Centre for Elderly Animals.

Trindledown Farm provides a tranquil and caring home for animals whose owners are no longer able to look after them. Many elderly pet owners rely on their animals for companionship and love, and worry about what will happen to their pets if anything should happen to them. We felt that this was a worthy charity to focus on and set out to run a raffle and tombola at this year’s carnival.

As a practice we spent many hours organising the event, chasing reps to donate prizes and co-ordinating a team of wonderful volunteers who not only helped on the day, but also donated many items for the raffle or tombola. We wish to thank everyone who helped make this event so successful. Prizes for the raffle included a vaccination for life for one lucky pet (donated by St Vincents), DVD player, microchips, personal CD player, cuddly toys and a singing Christmas dog!

Sunday the 26th of November 2006 woke up in a very bad mood indeed, with torrential rain, thunder and lightening for the entire morning. Despite the challenges we managed to set up shop, get out the displays and banners, and enjoy a bag of free ’donuts’ from our generous neighbouring stand. The only disappointment was the complete lack of people in the streets, and a few stall holders closed up and left as there appeared to be no let up in the rain. We persevered, aided and abetted by the odd glass of mulled wine and mince pies, and were rewarded by early afternoon when it began to clear, and the hardy and generous people of Wokingham and surrounds descended on the carnival. Our voices strained to be heard above a seemingly endless supply of Morris Dancers, but our stall generated a lot of interest.

By the end of the day we had given away all but one of our 100 tombola prizes, and made a total of £532.00 for the Trust. Much to her owner’s delight, Carrie Churchman – a 5 1/2 year old Border Collie – won the main prize of a vaccination for life. Given the challenges of the day we were delighted to raise such a large amount and will look to helping similar causes in the future.