Happy donkeys scoop awards

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THE owner of Whitby’s beach donkeys has scooped three awards from the Donkey Sanctuary in an annual presentation.

Geraldine Gisbon, who operates in Whitby’s West Cliff beach was presented with a welfare certificate, a best trimmed feeet award and came second in the Donkey Sanctuary’s Best Kept Beach Donkey Competition for the whole of the Yorkshire Coast and Cleveland area.

The awards were for last season and, as well as the condition of the animals, the judges looked as things such as the condition of the animal’s tack.

The awards were presented by borough mayor Councillor Hazel Lynskey who said: “I was very interested to learn that the awards are now based on a number of inspections of the donkeys, their home surroundings and their care over the course of the year, rather than just how they look on the day of the prize giving.

“This seems a much fairer approach and more importantly promotes excellent, long term animal welfare. Donkeys are wonderful animals that bring pleasure to the young and old alike and it was lovely to be involved in this occasion.”

Molly Lloyd from the Donkey Sanctuary added: “Geraldine did really, really well. I’m very pleased for her. She really looks after her donkeys, she’s a great character.

“The best trimmed feet award is very important. It’s quite a specialist thing, donkey’s feet and Geraldine’s donkey’s feet are always exemplary.”

Operators are allowed to take their donkeys onto the beach any time between the beginning of February and the end of November.