PHAASE is a small sanctuary situated on the outskirts of Warminster established by Dee Shaw in the early 1990s. We provide a home for abused, aged and sick equines and we also re-home those horses who are suitable. Currently we have fourteen equines in our care, on our rented land here in Warminster.
Our group is dedicated to giving the best care we possibly can to our animals not just on a physical level but also on the mental and spiritual planes as well.
Our base income comes from a loan scheme whereby a person contributes a fixed sum per week towards the general keep of the herd, and then has the use of a particular horse or pony as their own. This enables both human and equine to form that special bond. It also allows those people who cannot afford the usual financial or time commitment to experience the joys of horse ownership. Funding also comes from a wide variety of fund-raising events and from donations kindly given by our supporters. All horse care is overseen by Dee and carried out by her and a dedicated team of volunteers.
Many of our herd of fourteen animals are either retired, (several are in their 20s), or they have an ongoing illness or psychological issues. Several are arthritic, two have skin allergies, a couple with fear/ panic issues as a result of abuse or bad management and a few whose owners were no longer able to look after them.
We maintain a stable herd of animals that are not suitable for re-homing because of the need for ongoing treatments or because they are part of our loan scheme. We believe a herd to be a tight knit structure that provides a greater level of security to those of our animals who have experienced difficulties in past homes.
PHAASE was never a planned project, it just seemed to evolve gradually, one step at a time depending on the needs of the horses, rather like being led along a path. We have many good friends who help in many ways. However, with land rent, high feed costs, vet bills and many other expenses we still need fundraisers and sponsors to bring in more of an income. Our goal is to give the best care we can to the horses and hopefully realise our dream of one day purchasing land to be a permanent base for the sanctuary.
We are currently registered as a not-for-profit organisation, limited by guarantee.
About the founder Dee Shaw
Like most young girls I’d always wanted a pony. My mother bought me San when I was 15. He was a yearling New Forest pony and so thin he could hardly stand. He was full of worms, lice and anything else you can imagine. Between then and the age of 22 I acquired another 6, all in poor condition, ill treated usually from the meat man. Ten years later I opened a small trekking centre with what was then a herd of 13 – a very motley bunch! I naively thought the younger healthier ones could help support the older and sicker animals. I reckoned without red tape and laws governing the licensing of riding establishments. I closed the business after just 3 years – fed up with fighting the bureaucracy. Now I had around 17 dependents! I kept the herd together by running loan schemes on those who were ridable and by working every hour I could, firstly in a local factory and later by opening another non-horse associated business. My work day starts at 5 am and I finish at 7.30 – 8.00 pm. Juggling customers, clients and animal care. Recently I was diagnosed with a bone disease which, along with age, is beginning to take its toll. I’d thought for several years that maybe becoming a Charitable Trust would be the way to go in order to fund the herd’s welfare and needs, continually trying to improve their lot. I have an amazing group of people around me now who all believe these animals deserve care and love in their old age and not to be thrown in a dog-meat tin because they can no longer earn their keep. They’ve done their bit for us humans!
Aims of PHAASE
We aim to:
1. Provide a home for elderly horses or those with ongoing health issues.
2. Re-home suitable horses within a 25 mile radius of Warminster.
3. Provide an opportunity for people to experience the joys of horse care and gain experience in all aspects of horse management. For those who join the loan scheme it is an opportunity for those who would not be able to afford either the time or financial commitment of owning a horse to get a feel of horse ownership.
4. Educate and provide information on best practice care and well being for aged, abused and sick equines.
5. Become a member of the National Equine Welfare Council.
If you are in the Warminster vicinity and feel you would like to be more involved, and perhaps join our team, please call Dee on 01373 832484.