Forgive us, we have been run off our slingbacks these past few weeks. Having our hands full with the Sheffield 13, our focus has slipped a bit regarding our manners. We’ll address that now.

I would like to personally thank all of our volunteers for their unfailing support over the year and particularly of late. I am well aware that this sounds like the usual end of year message but it is true. We simply could not do it without you guys rising to the occasion time and time again, New Years Day being a textbook example. The usual suspects teamed up with newer faces, all coming to bale us out when hangovers rendered some crucial people missing in action.

Tia Rescue has a back bone of supporters that other rescues would give their right arm for. Possessing a huge range of skills, they stay the course and accept that sometimes we fail to give credit where it is undoubtedly due. A friend and I once tried to calculate how many greyhound rescues are no longer around and lost count. The crippling costs in effort, finance and heartbreak takes its toll. If every dog in our kennel found a home, we could fill it again within a week. That is what we are up against and it won’t get any easier.

Take the Xmas Tree Festival folk. Every year without fanfare, Zak’s slaves buy a tree in their local church as do other charities and then supporters get together and use it as a means of fund raising and promoting their chosen charity. This year they have raised £334.54 which is the highest they have done and I think they quite enjoyed chatting to people about owning a greyhound. This amount is over triple that of their nearest animal rescue, the RSPCA. Can you imagine that! Talk about David and Goliath.

We are an independent Yorkshire based charity (only just, Nottinghamshire is a field away),yet our tribe come from all over the UK. Emails fly between people who know each other well, though have never met. Others alert us to situations, frequently saving the life of an animal which we then forget to let them know the outcome. To all those who do this task, we thank you. So many dogs and horses are saved this way. Another no-drama group are the Social Sunday walkers, who quietly fly the flag whilst socialising the new arrivals, forging new contacts and promoting the breed. They epitomise our type of supporter; they just do it.

Perhaps this above all is what makes you all so special. Just getting on with it and not for Brownie points, likes, virtue signalling or playing to the gallery. God knows some of you should have a medal simply for putting up with me.

So to all the backroom lot, you know who you are…….

my deep deep thanks.