Adorable donkey foal and three-year-old singer make Duchess welcome on birthday visit

The Duchess of Cornwall has named a donkey foal as part of her birthday trip to commemorate a charity’s 50th anniversary.

The filly was born at the Donkey Sanctuary in Devon three week ago, after her mother was taken in by the charity as her owner could no longer care for her.

The Duchess, who turned 72 yesterday (17 July), named the foal Sweet Pea. She was also treated to a rendition of “Happy Birthday” by three-year-old Jacob Leney, whose mother Naomi works at the sanctuary.

“The Duchess of Cornwall’s visit today was an opportunity to celebrate our landmark achievements over the last 50 years — from our foundation as a charity rescuing UK donkeys from neglect and abuse to a global leader for equine welfare, research and veterinary care,” said chief executive Mike Baker.

“It was also an opportunity to take stock of the massive challenges in a world where the suffering of animals remains abhorrent.

“I introduced Her Royal Highness to members of the International Coalition for Working Equids (ICWE), an organisation established to work with the World Organisation for Animal Health. ICWE is comprised of leading non-governmental organisations including the Donkey Sanctuary, Brooke, SPANA and World Horse Welfare.”

Sweet Pea

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The duchess was given a tour of the Sidmouth sanctuary, including the charity’s multi award-winning RHS Chelsea Flower Show garden.

She also visited the donkey-facilitated learning centre, where she met beneficiaries of Exmouth-based charity Pete’s Dragons, which provides help and support for families bereaved by suicide.

The duchess was given a framed photo of the newly-named foal as well as a set of the Donkey Sanctuary Monopoly game as a birthday gift.

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