Dotty the donkey stolen from Sussex Brooke Champion group
Dotty, a fibre glass donkey belonging to the Sussex Brooke Champion group was stolen in the early hours of Monday 31 August at the Edenbridge and Oxted show. She was the beloved mascot of the group and had helped them raise over £140,000 for real donkeys working overseas.
Diane Price from East Grinstead has been a dedicated volunteer and fundraiser for over 20 years, and runs the Sussex Champion Group, which does local fundraising for Brooke, a British charity that helps improve the lives of working horses, donkeys and mules in developing countries. The Edenbridge and Oxted show was just one of many events that Dotty, named after the Brooke’s founder Dorothy Brooke, and Mr Brookey, her smaller counterpart have attended to raise money for the charity. Diane was shocked that someone had even thought of stealing it. The thieves managed to evade the 24-hour security at the event.
It’s not the money I’m worried about, it’s the principle of the thing, it’s a violation of our efforts and what we stand for. I just can’t believe someone would steal from a charity at an event where people are supposed to be having fun.”
Jemima Price, Diane’s daughter, took to Facebook to put the word out to find the donkey, explaining the huge sentimental value it had. She said:
“Myself, my sisters and our dearest dad who we so sadly lost a couple of weeks ago had clubbed together to buy this special donkey for my Mum a couple of years ago for Christmas and she put it to good use out on site with her charity stall.
“Any information or help in bringing the Brooke donkey home would be most appreciated. Reward offered!
"All the supporters and members of the Sussex group are hoping that Dotty is returned safe and sound. A spokesperson for the Brooke said: “We were shocked and saddened to hear about Dotty going missing – Diane has been such a great fundraiser and we know how much both Dotty and Mr Brookey mean to her. Let’s get her back!”