The Kit Wilson Trust for Animal Welfare near Uckfield

Goat and ponies

Goat and ponies - Credit: Archant

The Kit Wilson Trust for Animal Welfare was established over 35 years ago with a small legacy to be used for the benefit of animals from Katherine Wilson (always known as ‘Kit’), a well-known cat show judge and campaigner for animal welfare.


Bonny - Credit: Archant

A cornerstone of the Trust’s founding policy then, as now, was to promote the spaying and neutering of pets. The need for the Trust’s work in rescuing and re-homing unwanted cats and dogs would be greatly reduced if there were fewer kittens and puppies being born; animals rescued by the Trust are the lucky ones – thousands of unwanted pets are destroyed every year by other organisations and authorities.

Hamish and Shamus

Hamish and Shamus - Credit: Archant

From a modest beginning the Trust has grown and in 1986 set up its own Animal Rescue Centre in Hadlow Down, near Uckfield. In addition to the rescue and re-homing work, the trust has become increasingly involved in wildlife rehabilitation and operates a wildlife emergency help line. Orphaned and injured wildlife and birds are cared for until they can be rehabilitated.


Chappie - Credit: Archant

Animals are brought into the Centre for all kinds of reasons; often their owners can no longer keep them due to financial or domestic circumstances or they come into our care having been abandoned and found as strays. Every new home is carefully assessed to suit the needs of each individual animal. Over the years the Rescue Centre has also become a permanent home to many that it is not possible to re-home; including horses, donkeys, cats, pigs, sheep, goats, birds and small mammals. Older dogs and cats are often overlooked, when they really do deserve to spend their later years in a warm and loving home. Animals are not destroyed, unless on grounds of health or temperament it is kinder to do so.

Funds are raised through our newsletters, local supporters’ groups, individual donations, legacies, animal sponsors and our popular Charity shops in Uckfield and Eastbourne. We receive no Local Authority, Government or Lottery funding, relying on our supporters to help us to continue our work. We always remember that our benefactors wish to contribute towards the care and welfare of the animals and not general overheads. The Chairman (who is also the unpaid Centre Manager) and Trustees work on a purely voluntary basis and undertake a number of tasks.

At our Annual Sponsored Dog walk over Ashdown forest on 15th September this year many of the dogs looking for a home will be joining us for an enjoyable day out with volunteer walkers and maybe to catch the eye of a potential home! We enjoy seeing a large number of the dogs that have been re-homed taking part to raise much needed funds. Take a look at our website (, or request a copy of our newsletter, to see the latest animals looking for a home and to read various articles on our work. If you would like to help us in any way we look forward to hearing from you. Please telephone 01825 830444.