There will be a rather unusual visitor at one of the city’s shopping malls this week.

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Rik, a southern white faced owl, will be greeting shoppers at the Castle Mall along with members of Wing and a Prayer, Wild Bird and Owl Haven on Friday.

The charity hopes the event will raise awareness of its work with wild birds and also boost its fundraising efforts.

Wing and a Prayer, Wild Bird and Owl Haven is based in Stratton Strawless and aims to release as many abandoned and injured birds back to the wild as possible. It is run by a dedicated team of volunteers, funded entirely by donations, and cares for about 600 raptors and birds each year.

Richard Gallop, manager of the charity, said: “We are very proud of our high release rate, which we believe is due to the hands-on care given to the birds and the nutritionally balanced diets provided. Although our busiest time of year is spring and summer, we also have many birds who are with us over winter. Some live here at the Haven and others will not be well enough to be released until spring. Our food and medicine costs alone can be up to £1,000 per month.”

He added: “We have had another very busy year with numbers higher than last year. One of this year’s stars was a kingfisher who was suffering concussion. He was successfully released and we have had reports of several sightings of him at the release site.”

On Friday Wing and a Prayer, Wild Bird and Owl Haven will have a fundraising stand outside the Norwich City Football Club shop in the Castle Mall.

As well as the visit by Rik, the southern white faced owl, there will also be prints of birds, sponsors, and other ideas for last minute Christmas presents available to buy.

There will also be a raffle - Suffolk Owl Sanctuary has donated a family pass as a prize and Budgens, in Prince of Wales Road, Norwich, has donated a Christmas hamper.

• For more about Wing and a Prayer Wild Bird and Owl Haven visit or email

1 comment

  • I am concerned that the newspaper The Evening News does not know what news is. First stories about one single person wanting a no fly zone in North Walsham then self publicity for there sister news paper without merit then inflating the egos of a celebrity band one of whom does not apparently want media coverage and now an advertising feature for the Castle Mall. The connecting link friends in high places and a good publicist. Hope the editor gets lots of Christmas cards.

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    Thursday, December 19, 2013





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