In the 1930's a lady called Miss M Raymonde-Hawkins purchased a cottage with a small patch of land just outside of Lewes in East Sussex.
A former headmistress with a deep compassion for animals, she left the education sector to establish Raystede as an animal charity in 1952.
In the early days the charity was based in her cottage and back garden. But right from the start she pledged to provide facilities that were equal to or better than existing animal rescue centres.
Fast forward six decades and the vision behind Raystede Centre for Animal Welfare remains as strong and impassioned as it did when Miss Raymonde-Hawkins began her campaign to give unwanted and abandoned animals a better life. Today the site has expanded across 43 acres where we care for over 2000 animals a year, rehoming over 1000 animals and providing sanctuary to even more. We are one of the most diverse rescue centres in the UK because we care for so many different species of animals.