An online personalised pet gift shop is on a mission to ensure rescue dogs in Greater Manchester have a happy Christmas.
Yappy.com has announced it will be donating toys, warm beds and everyday essentials to a number of local rescue centres in the area, including Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary in Ramsbottom, and Manchester & Cheshire Dogs’ Home in Harpurhey.
Due to current lockdown restrictions and social distancing guidelines, many animal rescue centres are currently unable to re-home dogs to new owners, meaning that hundreds of dogs in Greater Manchester could remain in shelters this Christmas while they wait for restrictions to be lifted and new owners being permitted to visit them.
In addition to donating a dog toy to each and every dog at the centres in the run up to Christmas, Wythenshawe-based Yappy.com will be playing Santa Paws and offering brand new cosy beds, harnesses, food and water bowls plus other essential items to make life a little easier for the dogs and staff working at the rescue centres.
How brilliant is this?
John Smith – Founder of Yappy.com – says he’s on a mission to give back to the dedicated rescue centres who have worked tirelessly during the pandemic and spread a little festive ‘yappiness’ to dogs in rescue. He said: “2020 has been a really difficult time for rescue shelters and after hearing that so many dogs might still remain under their care this Christmas,
“[so] as a business, we wanted to give something back and donate a few treats that will make a small difference to the pups who haven’t been rehomed before Christmas due to lockdown restrictions.
“We hope that the toys will help to entertain the remaining dogs a little and that the dog beds make their life a little more comfortable whilst they wait for their new owners to provide them with a happy and safe home in the near future.”
Gemma Atkinson – Actress, Hits Radio presenter and President of Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary – added: “We are pleased Yappy.com have chosen Bleakholt as one of their Christmas charities. Our dogs who are in the kennels over the festive period will love their new toy and cosy bed,
“It will help make a difficult time a little easier for everyone.”
Karen Weed – General Manager at Bleakholt, which re-homes around 1,300 animals each year including dogs, cats, rabbits, donkeys and horses – said: “Despite being closed to the public for visiting and rehoming appointments, sadly we are still taking in many animals who need a new home and we expect this number to rise in 2021 given the impact of COVID-19 and changes in owners’ individual circumstances.
“In the meantime, Bleakholt is still accepting applications to adopt the animals in our care and we are working hard to arrange new homes for the 60 dogs under our wing when lockdown restrictions lift.
“Sadly, some of these are still likely to be with us over Christmas but with the support of our incredible volunteers and kind donations, we will ensure that they all receive a few Christmas treats. We’re always so grateful for the donations we receive and even more so at Christmas and during this second lockdown period.
“Despite our two shops being closed, our online shop is open offering a range of gifts, cards, hoodies, toys and treats at affordable prices whilst helping to fund the work that we do.”
Joanne Barrow – Spokesperson for Manchester and Cheshire Dogs’ Home – added: “This year has been a challenging year for everyone [and] I want to thank all our staff, volunteers and supporters for everything they have done and going over and above in helping us to help the dogs in our care.
“Donations like this help us keep the dogs enriched and entertained in kennels and it really boost the staff morale to know there are others looking to help the dogs in our care.”
To make an application for one of the animals at Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary, you can visit the website to fill out the application form here, and the animal sponsorship scheme is also available online offering the chance to sponsor a dog, cat, horse or donkey for £25 a year.
You can enquire about adopting a dog from Manchester and Cheshire Dog’s Home here.
Manchester band M60 are tagging Gary Neville every day until he listens to their music — let’s help make it happen
Nearly half a year ago, Manchester band M60 began a social media campaign to start tagging Manchester United legend turned pundit Gary Neville every single day until he listens to their music.
And, you know, since we’re all about supporting local artists, we thought we’d do our bit by pecking his head in too.
We’ve seen the Manc indie outfit live a couple of times now — including their headline set at Gorilla back in 2023 (at the time their biggest gig to date) — and they’ve never disappointed, be it the performance or their ever-growing cult following of loyal fans.
That being said, we feel we’re only doing Gary Neville and all of you lot a public service by joining them in their efforts to get their name out there. Plus, we’re enjoying all the different ways they’re managing to keep things interesting:
If you’ve never come across them before either, the four-piece is made up of a bunch of mates from various towns around the region and is fronted by vocalist and lead guitarist Matthew Morton. Alliterative names always make us think of superheroes and their tunes often make us feel like that too.
Playing together since their high school days and named after the massive Greater Manchester motorway from 2015 onwards, they’re best known for tunes like ‘I Don’t Mind’, ‘Honey’, ‘Darling’; ‘Fade Away’, ‘Kool-Aid’ and plenty more.
They also recently released their latest debut EP, How Did You Get There? and trust us, it’s a belter. Morton once described their sound as ‘Sweet Mancunian indie rock‘ and we couldn’t sum it up any better ourselves. Sounds great, doesn’t it? Which is exactly why we want ‘r Gary to get on them too.
Also, we’ve found the whole journey very funny up until this point, so long may it continue — not too long though; we actually really want him to become M60’s newest and biggest fan through sheer persistence and pestering by the local band and yours truly. And by all means, feel free to join us in the good fight.
The local lads themselves have joked about becoming more well-known simply by embracing themselves as the “Gary Neville meme band” as the days pass, but the strategy is still kind of working nonetheless and with more new music on the way, why stop now?
We want to see Gary’s phone blowing up non-stop, right up to the point that he gets more annoyed than he did in that infamous clip of somebody passing his phone number and simply has to see what all the fuss is about it.
Featured Images — Press Image/Sky Sports (via screenshot)
BBC is looking for Mancs to take part in next series of Race Across the World
Are you a fan of travelling? Got yourself a bit of a competitive streak in your nature? This might just be your calling then.
The BBC is currently casting for the next series of Race Across the World.
The broadcaster has announced that the BAFTA-winning hit show is set to return to our TV screens for a third series later this year, and producers are now on the look-out for “intrepid duos” of all ages who reckon they’re ready to take a step into the unknown, and embark on an epic race across land and sea – and that includes Greater Manchester residents.
With applications for the next series of the massively-popular show now open, nomadic Mancs are being encouraged to take part.
On a limited budget and away from the luxuries of modern technology and conveniences, those lucky applicants selected to take part in the next series will get the chance to experience life in some of the world’s most beautiful and remote locations.
Navigating their way across thousands of miles, they’ll travel through spectacular scenery and dynamic cities, visit ancient wonders, learn local customs, and take part in time-honoured traditions.
But, as producers are keen to point out, “the physical journey is only half of the story”.
That’s because, as the contestants take on the challenge of travelling across the world, the greatest thing they’ll discover along the way could actually be about themselves and one another.
Putting out a UK-wide casting call on the BBC website this week, producers Studio Lambert wrote: “We are now accepting applications for the next series of Race Across the World. This experience is open to all, whether you’re a seasoned traveller or total novice.
“We want to hear what undertaking a trip like this would mean to you, and with a cash prize at stake, what lengths you would go to to win.
Applications for the massively-popular show are now open / Credit: BBC
“Maybe you’re looking to change something in your life? Or are keen to share the journey with someone special like a family member, best friend, or someone you’ve lost touch with. You may even have a very personal reason for wanting to travel at this time in your life or explore a particular part of the world.”
Fancy it then?
Applications for the third series of Race Across the World are now open for anyone over 18 years of age, with a deadline date of Friday 19 April 2024, and you can find out more information and apply via the BBC website.