The Barn Owl Centre. A registered charity dedicated to community education, conservation and bird welfare

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Our centre is dedicated to the welfare of barn owls & birds of prey

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Specialised Sanctuary for Owls & Birds of Prey

This is a captive bred Barn Owl sadly kept in a large Budgie Cage

With the Owl Pet Trade growing UK wide! More Sanctuaries are needed to take in unwanted & mistreated 'captive bred Owls & Birds of Prey'

Rehabilitation & Education is our Passion
When viewing our website, you will see that we work to bring people & wildlife together. For us it's about being interactive & we love educating people of all ages about the support we offer birds whether they are wild or captive bred rescues. We also enjoy supporting all other wildlife species on site, which is why we have given most of Netheridge Farm back to support local wildlife. Netheridge Farm, which is the home of the Barn Owl Centre is becoming an amazing place that offers so much, a place where wildlife can gain the protection it deserves!

For those who understand the true meaning of rehabilitation, people who get to meet us soon learn how passionate we are & that rehabilitation plays a key part to our birds lives & our charity's ethos. We enjoy sharing our work & passion with everyone, the younger generation for us are the important ones as these are the next generation of conservationists!

Rehabilitation can in some cases be a very long process that gives no timescale of fixing the root of the problem. It means you have to be very patient, dedicated & provide important stages of care to root out the problem. When cruelty cases such as the one below come forward, we never look backwards. We simple look to the future by working hard to offer the best possible support we can give, please read on & help where you can.

To learn more about the some of the birds that come into our care, please read on
The below relates to a Court Case of cruelty where 26 were placed in our care, video evidence below.
The Barn Owl Centre, which is a small charity joined forces to help a very large organisation to offer immediate rescue support for 26 Owls & Birds of Prey that were being abused. This developed into a year long court case where a Shrewsbury man was eventually found guilty of cruelty. All 26 birds are now with us for the rest of their lives, which enables them to have a second chance in life without further abuse!

News story linking to the below video

A 68-year-old man who claimed to be running an animal rescue centre in Shropshire has escaped an immediate prison sentence after being found guilty of kicking and punching several birds of prey.

William MacKenzie was filmed by neighbours mistreating several protected species of owl at his Shrewsbury home over a two year period.

MacKenzie, of Boscobel Drive, Heath Farm, was eventually reported, which followed the birds being taken away from him on the 6th October 2011, on the same day all birds, 26 in total were transported and placed in the care of a well established Owl charity located in Gloucester.

On the 12th September 2012 William Mackenzie was finally found guilty of nine animal welfare charges and was handed a 16-week prison sentence, suspended for two years.

He was also given a lifetime ban from keeping any type of animal and ordered to wear an electronic tag for six months as well as pay £500 in costs.

During the two-day trial on the 11th and 12th September 2012, Shrewsbury Magistrates Court was shown video footage, filmed by neighbours, The video evidence showed MacKenzie striking and kicking several birds in his garden, including a Snowy Owl, an African Spotted Eagle Owl & a Barn Owl.

MacKenzie was also captured on video mowing his lawn next to a number of distressed Owls, whilst grabbing & throwing to one side like a rag doll on separate occasions a Barn Owl & a Tawny Owl.

Chairman of the magistrates’ bench Mrs Maxine Taplin, said: “There is clear evidence of suffering.” This he clearly denied after being showed the video evidence!

Following the verdict of Guilty, RSPCA inspector Dave McCartney said: “His behaviour is exaggerated by the fact that he was running a rescue centre supposedly caring for sick and injured birds. He was, in his own words, ‘experienced and knowledgeable’ and should have known what he was doing was wrong. “For some birds there was no escape. They were tethered when they were grabbed, punched & kicked.”

MacKenzie said it was his hobby to rescue birds which had been abandoned as pets or involved in road accidents. He was known to exhibit these birds at shows and events across Shropshire to raise money to support his interest

Video contains graphic evidence of this heart wrenching case of Owl Cruelty
All birds in this video are now in the care of the Barn Owl Centre

The birds that was confiscated from this monsters care were

4 Barn Owls, 1 Tawny Owl, 1 Little Owl, 9 Eagle Owls, 1 Snowy Owl,
2 Boobook Owls, 1 White Faced Scops Owl, 3 Harris Hawks, 2 Red Tailed Hawks,
1 Hybrid Falcon & 1 American Kestrel 

Reported by BBC News
Reported by Daily Mail Online

Message from the Barn Owl Centre

Now these birds are with our charity, this takes the number of birds in our care to 60. Caring for this many birds will always mean that extra financial support will be needed at all times to support increasing overheads & unforeseen veterinary care when needed.

For all those who like to help to protect Owls, please help to provide any financial support no matter how small!

If you would like to visit our sanctuary & the birds to see how your donation will help, please do not hesitate to give us a call to arrange a personal visit, we would love to show you around.

Ways to Donate to our Sanctuary

1: Donate Mobile Phone Text
Whatever mobile network your on, you can simply a text to 70070 using our
unique fundraising code - OWLZ99 with a £1, £2, £3, £4, £5 or £10 donation
2: Donate direct by calling us on 01452 383999

Credit Card Donations can taken over the phone.
3: Donate by Post
Cheque donations to be made payable to Barn Owl Centre
Address Details: Barn Owl Centre. Netheridge Farm
Netheridge Close. Hempsted. Gloucester. GL2 5LE
4: Donate using Paypal
Send via your Paypal account to
5: Donate direct via our Website
6: Donate by setting up a BAC's Payment
Account Name: Barn Owl Centre - Account No: 72399261 - Sort Code: 40-22-09 - Reference: Owl Support
If you wish to visit the Barn Owl Centre's home at Netheridge Farm, please give us a call to arrange your personalised visit. We would love to show you around so you can get a full understanding of the importance of our exciting appeal.

'Images below show the conditions the birds were kept in back garden & where they can now live out their lives at the Barn Owl Centre'

William MacKenzie about to punch a beautiful Snowy Owl
William MacKenzie about to punch a beautiful Snowy Owl
Barn Owl being grabbed like a rag doll. Words from the Barn Owl Centre cannot describe this behaviour
Barn Owl being grabbed like a rag doll. Words from the Barn Owl Centre cannot describe this behaviour
Barn Owl kept in disgusting conditions
Barn Owl kept in disgusting conditions
Hybrid Falcon, how can anyone keep a Bird of Prey like this!
Hybrid Falcon, how can anyone keep a Bird of Prey like this!
A Red Tailed Hawk kept in aweful conditions
A Red Tailed Hawk kept in aweful conditions

Now living at the Barn Owl Centre, the birds future is bright with caring people
Now living at the Barn Owl Centre, the birds future is bright with caring people
Netheridge Farm - Home of the Barn Owl Centre
Netheridge Farm - Home of the Barn Owl Centre

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Other Barn Owl Centre News

26 February 2018
2018 - Now available, Our 'NEW' ECO BARN OWL BOX Ref EcoT)
26 February 2018
2018 - Now available, Our 'NEW' ECO KESTREL BOX
26 February 2018
2018 - The launch of our 'NEW' ECO TAWNY OWL NESTING BOX
26 February 2018
2018 - The launch of our 'NEW' ECO BARN OWL NESTING BOX
2 February 2018
Volunteering at the Barn Owl Centre
28 April 2017
The Countess Bathurst joins our charity as Patron
12 October 2016
For more regular news updates click here to find out more
29 June 2016
A 2hr Photography Experience - Weekend Evenings
17 May 2016
The oldest Barn Owl alive?
26 February 2016
Welcome to the re-launch of our long awaited Gloucestershire Owl Project 2016-19
9 June 2015
Gloucestershire's Owl Box Project - 2015
2 January 2015
2015 - Great News for Gloucestershire Barn Owls, Little Owls, Tawny Owls & Kestrels
13 November 2014
Barn Owl Centre helps PTS rescue a Bird of Prey
12 July 2014
TAWNY OWL RELEASE Visit our live Webcam
7 June 2014
21 May 2014
Gloucestershire Wild Barn Owls 2014
10 May 2014
Barn Owl Centre adds 1 new trustee to charity
9 July 2013
Barn Owl Manors now off to Malaysia
12 October 2012
Back to the Wild
19 June 2012
Gloucestershire Environmental Trust supports Barn Owl Centre
10 January 2012
Barn Owl Manors Now Occupied
30 December 2011
Nest Box Launch for 2012
31 May 2011
The Co-operative Farms supporting Barn Owls
16 January 2011
2 September 2010
Barn Owl Manor - Building for Barn Owls
20 August 2010
Our Activity Centre
6 July 2010
Re-locating a 6 ton Ash Tree for the Owls
1 March 2010
Specialised Sanctuary for Owls & Birds of Prey
17 April 2009
Wild Tawny Owlets brought into Care 2009
27 October 2008
The appearance of an Eagle Owl
9 August 2008
New Arrival to the Centre
19 November 2006
Nest /Roost Boxes for Owls this Winter
23 June 2006
The arrival of a white Little Owl Orphan
28 March 2006
Barn Owl Population Increase for Gloucestershire
7 March 2006
Barn Owl Centre Documentary
6 July 2004
Rescued Little Owl
The Barn Owl Centre is a registered charity dedicated to community education, conservation and bird welfare
Charity. No : 1097410
Copyright © 1997-2018 Barn Owl Centre. All products and services are inclusive of VAT - VAT Registration No.: 271650214
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