The South West’s largest horse rescue charity is planning a night to remember as it celebrates Christmas with its beautiful animals.

The stables and indoor arena at the Mare & Foal Sanctuary’s Coombe Park Visitor Centre near Totnes will be transformed into a winter wonderland for its first ever Gold, Frankincense and Mare evening on December 8.

And organisers are hoping it will become an annual event to celebrate the holidays and make sure the charity’s rescue horses get in on the festive action.

Sanctuary Quarantine Supervisor Jenny Bowden said: “We wanted to do something to celebrate Christmas and we knew we had to get some of the horses and ponies involved.

“People will be able to buy snacks and treats as presents to put in their stockings and there will be a range of stalls available selling some truly unique Christmas gifts, including our beautiful Adoption Packs so they can keep in touch with their favourite horse or pony all year round.

“It should be a really good evening with music and fun for the whole family. We’re all really looking forward to it.”

The event – which starts at 6pm and finishes at 8pm – also includes live performances from the brilliant Ipplepen village choir, Unity in Sound.

Singer Lesley Tague said: “We are really looking forward to performing at the Mare & Foal Sanctuary. The indoor arena is a huge space and we can’t wait to hit the rafters with our songs – and not all of them will be traditional carols. We’re adding a modern twist to liven up proceedings.

“We love to perform but it always means a little bit more to us when we know it’s for such a good cause.”

Arts and crafts stalls at the event will be selling a host of unique hand-made Christmas gifts, including driftwood mirrors, candles, paintings, jams and hand-crafted jewellery.

The Yuletide extravaganza will include mince pies, festive treats and all our adoption horses, giant Shire Kavaner, tiny Shetlands Sir Didymus and Dipsybell and gorgeous ponies William and Ludo.

Jenny added: “The event is free and we’re really hoping the evening will attract hundreds of local people and supporters to share this special time of year with our staff and ponies.”

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