A WILDLIFE rescue centre has raised £50,000 to avoid closure thanks to the support of the community.

Oak and Furrows Wildlife Rescue Centre made an appeal in December to generous animal lovers to help the charity raise the money to help them meet the costs of caring for almost 300 unwell animals.

This winter they faced an unprecedented level of injured hedgehogs coming in to the centre, now caring for 162 after taking in 12 hedgehogs due to Storm Emma.

One of the big reasons the centre has had an increase in injured animals is due to another rescue centre in the region closing their doors because they are full.

With just eight members of staff at the centre on a permanent basis and a huge rise of injured animals, the centre did not have the funds needed to survive the year.

To try and raise the money the centre set up a JustGiving page for people to donate and on Monday they reached there £50,000 target which will keep the centre open for the rest of 2018.

In a statement they said: “We have the absolute delight of confirming that through the kindness and support of our local community and beyond, we have successfully raised the funds needed to keep the centre operating into 2018.

“We could not have achieved this feat without the unfaltering generosity of our supporters; who by attending our Christmas fundraising events and arriving at the centre with donations of not just money, but food and the items necessary to keep us going over the Christmas period, have undoubtedly saved our rescue centre from imminent closure.

“A special thank you is also due to those supporters who ran their own events from pub quizzes to a ‘Pets Santa’s Grotto Day’ kindly donating all the money raised to our cause.”