Irish showjumper Denis Lynch visited an equine rescue centre in Mallow, Co Cork yesterday (6 December) to see how the money he collected for the charity is being put to use.

The rider, who is based in Germany, raised €190,000 ( £163,000) for the the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ISPCA) through his contacts on the Global Champions Tour to help the charity tackle Ireland’s equine crisis.

Last year H&H highlighted the suffering in Ireland, where where ponies and horses have have become terribly undervalued as a result of over-breeding and the economic downturn (news feature, 19 August 2010).

And the charity says that through Denis’s support, its centres in Longford and Mallow, many more horses have been helped since last February.

ISPCA Honorary Secretary, Barbara Bent said, “Denis’s enthusiasm and belief in helping to raise these funds has made a real difference.

“Horses from many different sad and cruel situations; emaciated TB older mares, weak and injured trotting ponies and foals, starved and neglected young horses, are all benefiting from Denis’s commitment to make a difference.”

And Denis said, “I am impressed by the great work being done by the ISPCA. It’s very distressing when you read  and see reports of any animal being mistreated or neglected but the care and attention they receive from the staff here does give you great hope. I hope to be able to continue supporting the society.”

Last week the ISPCA launched a virtual ‘Hay Drive’ to highlight the issue of the many horses who are left to starve over the winter months, and to raise funds to feed the animals in its care.  

The appeal asks people to donate €3 ( £2.58)to help fill the ISPCA barn. Donations can be made by texting the word Hay to 57802 or via the ISPCA website.

Denis also visited ‘Bert’, a pony who suffered horrific burn injuries over Halloween, and who was rescued in Cork by ISPCA Inspector, Lisa O’Donovan.