HENS are being saved from the dinner plate thanks to a big-hearted Burton man.
Barry Stone, 44, from Stretton, became involved with the organisation Fresh Start for Hens three years ago, helping to re-home former battery and free range hens.
He told the Mail: “We make no profit from our work, doing it for our love of hens, and the joy of finding these wonderful girls a forever, happy home.
“It’s really all about the pleasure of giving these birds a better life after most have spent much of their life in a small cage, and watching them turn from a shy bird into a cheeky pet that follows you around and learns to trust humans.”
The voluntary organisation operates relies on volunteers.
Mr Stone said: “We re-home to a diverse range of individuals wanting hens as pets or companion animals. Hens have begun their new lives in towns, cities, country gardens, allotments, schools and residential care homes.”
Nationally Fresh Start for Hens re-homed 2,823 hens on their last re homing day in September – this included 54 in Burton.
Mr Stone added: “We were delighted with this total as it was our first re-homing day in Burton but hope the people of Burton can find more hens a home on our next re-homing day.
“We suggest that people start with three hens – these hens have been through a lot in their short lives and are not always looking their best. Our two recent additions from June were from ‘enriched cages’, they had no feathers on their backs but with a little TLC, fresh air and lots of love they look amazing.
“It is so rewarding nurturing them back to full health, and in return for your kindness they will entertain you and follow you around the garden. Ours love helping us to do the weeding in return for a tasty worm or grub and lay you beautiful fresh eggs.”
The next re-homing day is October 12 at Mr Stone’s partner Tracy’s home in Barton. They will need to be reserved online by September 30 at freshstartforhens.co.uk
The cost is a donation of around £2.50. In total the cost of keeping a hen is around £150 once food and a coop is taken into account.
The Stones do not allow hens to be rehomed to people who want to sell them on.