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Fundraiser completes marathon challenge for equine charity
Clive Poole was one of 12 runners to complete the challenge.
Clive Poole ran seven marathons in seven days for The Donkey Sanctuary.

A 57-year-old man has raised over £1,400 for The Donkey Sanctuary, after running seven marathons in seven days.

Clive Poole, from Gloucester, completed the ‘Week At the Knees’ challenge for the charity, covering 183.4 miles in total across Buckinghamshire.

Mr Poole discovered the work of The Donkey Sanctuary by chance, after finding its Sidmouth sanctuary was close to where he was holidaying in Devon. He and his wife visited the sanctuary, and soon found a passion for donkeys and the sanctuary.

This, as well as his hobby of running, inspired Mr Poole to sign up for his seven-day marathon challenge.

The challenge did come with its difficulties, after his ankle gave way with just five miles left of his seventh marathon. Mr Poole continued on, covering the final distance at a walking pace.

Through this perseverance, Mr Poole became one of the 12 runners to complete the Week At the Knees challenge. He has since had a tattoo drawn to celebrate his achievement.

The completion of his seventh marathon for The Donkey Sanctuary brings Mr Poole’s total number of marathons to 90. This leaves him with just 10 more marathons to run to join the UK 100 Marathon Club.

Despite the hardships, Mr Poole says that he has made some friends for life from the experience.

He and his wife now visit the Donkey Sanctuary’s East Devon premises several times a year, stopping in to visit their two-year-old grandson’s adopted donkey Drizzle.

Rose Huxham, fundraising officer at the Donkey Sanctuary, said: “We offer Clive our heartfelt congratulations on completing such a mammoth task.

“It is such an amazing achievement to not only complete the seven marathons in seven days, but for raising such a great amount too, which will help us continue our work supporting donkeys at most in need.”

Image © The Donkey Sanctuary

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Reporting service for dead wild birds updated

News Story 1
 The Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) has updated its online reporting service for dead wild birds.

The new version allows those reporting a dead bird to drop a pin on a map when reporting the location. It also includes a wider range of wild bird species groups to select from when describing the bird.

The online service, which helps APHA to monitor the spread of diseases such as avian influenza, can be accessed here

Click here for more...
News Shorts
NI chief vet urges bluetongue vigilance

Northern Ireland's chief veterinary officer (CVO) has urged farmers to be vigilant for signs of bluetongue, after the Animal and Plant Health Agency warned there was a very high probability of further cases in Great Britain.

There have been 126 confirmed cases of bluetongue virus serotype 3 in England since November 2023, with no cases reported in Northern Ireland. The movement of live ruminants from Great Britain to Northern Ireland is currently suspended.

According to the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA), the virus is most likely to enter Northern Ireland through infected animals or germplasm (semen or ova) being imported.

Brian Dooher, Northern Ireland's CVO, said: "Surveillance for this disease within Northern Ireland has been increased to assist with detection at the earliest opportunity which will facilitate more effective control measures."

Farmers should report any suspicions of the disease to their private veterinary practitioner, the DAERA Helpline on 0300 200 7840 or their local DAERA Direct Veterinary Office.