Girls Aloud singer joins tea party campaign for Lewknor charity

Girls Aloud singer Sarah Harding with Sage the kitten at Blue Cross Lewknor
Girls Aloud singer Sarah Harding with Sage the kitten at Blue Cross Lewknor

Girls Aloud singer Sarah Harding came face to face with homeless kittens and cats as she teamed up with Blue Cross to launch the national pet charity’s Paws for Tea campaign.

Sarah is calling on animal lovers everywhere to host a tea party for friends and family in aid of the animal charity after visiting their rehoming centre in Lewknor.

This year Blue Cross is aiming to raise £70,000 with its Paws for Tea campaign which calls on people to host their own tea parties either at home or in the office. All money raised from the campaign will support the tens of thousands of sick, injured and abandoned dogs, cats, small animals and horses Blue Cross helps every year through its rehoming centres and animal hospitals across the country.

During her visit to Blue Cross Lewknor, Sarah met five-week-old kittens Sage and Salsa. The kittens were born at the rehoming centre earlier this year after their mother Mouse was brought in heavily pregnant.

The Celebrity Big Brother 2017 winner also met Italian greyhound Gino who was rehomed by Blue Cross in 2015. The five-year-old regularly returns to the rehoming centre to act as an ambassador dog - a role which sees him provide canine support to other dogs who may be nervous in their new surroundings or unsure of being around other dogs.

Sarah, who has dogs and cats of her own, said: “My pets are like my best friends and I just couldn’t be without them. After meeting some of the beautiful cats and dogs needing homes at Blue Cross Lewknor, I’m so proud to be supporting the charity and really hope I can encourage lots of animal lovers to take part in the Blue Cross Paws for Tea campaign.

“It’s so simple - just get together with your friends or family over a nice brew and a slice of something tasty. You’ll not only have a lovely time, but the money you raise will help Blue Cross change the lives of pets all over the country. Pop the kettle on for these wonderful pets!

“I remember growing up we always had Battenberg cake in the house, which was brilliant, but I think my all-time favourite remains butterfly cakes because I just love the buttercream icing – I could literally just eat that all day and I would be happy!”

Celebrity chef Ainsley Harriott has also shared his recipe for Spiced Pumpkin Cake with Coconut Custard for this year’s campaign.

People who are unable to host their own tea parties can choose to visit Blue Cross Lewknor on Saturday, May 12 where staff and volunteers will be holding a tea party for members of the public. More details of the event can be found on the Blue Cross Lewknor rehoming centre Facebook page.

In 2017, Blue Cross helped 40,000 sick and injured pets through its rehoming centres and animal hospitals across the country. The pet charity also provides a range of other free services including a Pet Bereavement Support Service and education visits to schools, colleges and youth groups.

Heather Collin, Blue Cross community and events regional manager, said: “We’re so excited to have Sarah on board supporting our Paws for Tea campaign this year.

“Blue Cross helps tens of thousands of pets every year and it’s events like Paws for Tea which raise the vital funds to make that possible as being a charity we receive no Government funding.

“This year we’re hoping to raise £70,000 - with every penny going towards helping animals coming through the doors of our rehoming centres and animal hospitals across the country every day.”

To sign up for a free Paws for Tea fundraising pack, full of ideas and recipes including Ainsley’s; posters; balloons and a collection box visit www.bluecross.org.uk/paws-tea or call 08444 993 663.