Life
Sanctuary might have to shut down and euthanize animals because a neighbor said it smelled
They've been running the sanctuary for 21 years, but that might soon come to an end - all because a neighbor was offended by the "animal" smell.
Elijah Chan
06.16.22

Rescuing animals is hard and often underappreciated.

This is a reality that a family had to face after more than two decades of dedicating their lives just to saving animals.

Geoff Grewcock and his daughter Emma Hudson have catered for the animals in their area. Their organization, the Nuneaton and Warwickshire Wildlife Sanctuary has saved thousands of animals by rehabilitating them after rescue.

But the father-daughter tandem’s sanctuary is in danger of being closed down.

A letter was sent to them last May 19 after a neighbor reported to the council that an “animal smell” was coming from the sanctuary and was causing a nuisance to the people in the area.

The sanctuary is located at the back of Grewcock’s bungalow home. They offer free rescue services for animals and are educating school children and the community about these animals.

“’On both occasions, the officer was of the opinion that the odor was unpleasant and was present for a prolonged period which would prevent the complainant from enjoying the use of their property.” The letter said, as quoted by The Guardian.

They were warned that if the sanctuary continues to smell, they will have to pay a fine.

The fine, however, was not cheap. They are looking at a possible £20,000 fine for their operations.

And as a non-profit animal rescue organization, they just don’t have that kind of money especially when every possible penny is being funneled to the animals’ needs.

Hudson said that they’ve been running the sanctuary for 21 years without complaints.

“Everyone who lives near here knows what we do and is very supportive. We don’t cause any problems but we do care for animals.” Hudson said to The Guardian.

Meanwhile, she shared that the local council told them that they’ve received one complaint from somebody so they had to investigate.

With the looming fine, the tandem sees the possibility of shutting down.

“But this order is indefinite, meaning if we don’t stop the smell then we could face a £20,000 which will simply close us down. But I simply don’t know what more we can do to.” Hudson said, “’We clean and disinfect every night, the issue is not of hygiene – animals will smell of animals, no matter what.”

“The Borough Council has a duty to assess and identify statutory nuisances within the Borough and take appropriate action under the relevant legislation.” Councilor Julian Gutteridge said, as quoted by the news outlet. “In this case officers felt that a statutory nuisance was occurring and was obliged to serve the abatement notice.”

The council defended that they are “always ready to work with the parties involved”.

Hudson also claimed that the council suggested for them to euthanize the animals. Both Grewcock and Hudson reiterated that they are not putting any animal down.

“The cheeky part is that they want to charge us £61 just to appeal it. We are just a small charity and every penny counts towards ensuring the welfare of these animals.” She said.

In Facebook post, Hudson said that their team has been attending police and council events for years.

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By Elijah Chan
hi@sbly.com
Elijah Chan is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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