Privacy policy

At Ferne Animal Sanctuary, we take your privacy and your personal data very seriously. We know how important it is to you that we treat any personal information that we might gather from you with the utmost care.

We promise to protect and respect your privacy. Our Privacy Policy relates to our website, use of emails and texts for marketing purposes, and any other ways we collect information. It covers how we process any personal information you provide to us, as well as how we’re committed to keeping it safe and managing it in line with data protection laws.

Please read this Privacy Policy carefully as it contains important information about how we protect, use and process any personal information you give to us. We aim to be clear when we collect your data and not do anything with the data you wouldn’t reasonably expect.

Who we are

Set in 72 acres of glorious Somerset countryside, high in the Blackdown Hills, Ferne Animal Sanctuary has been saving the lives of unwanted and abandoned animals for the last 80 years. We provide refuge for domestic animals, farm animals and horses. We work hard to re-home the cats and dogs that find their way into our care, other animals remain at Ferne to enjoy the rest of their lives in the peace and tranquility that the Sanctuary offers.

Get in touch

Before we tell you more about what data we gather, why we gather it, and how we look after it why don’t we let you know how you can contact us. This might be to ask to see your data; to make a complaint about how we have handled your data; to ask us to delete or correct something.

Our Data Protection Officer (DPO) is Emma Purnell who can be contacted either by email at or in writing to Data Protection Officer, Emma Purnell Ferne Animal Sanctuary, Wambrook, Nr Chard, Somerset, TA20 3DH.

Data Protection Rights

Ferne Animal Sanctuary will only use your personal information when we have your explicit consent or if the requirement falls under legitimate interest. You have the right to withdraw your consent at any time. You also have the right to ask Ferne to stop using your personal information for direct marketing purposes. Simply contact and the fundraising team will amend and update your contact preferences.

Right to be Informed

You have the right to be told how your personal information will be used. This privacy policy is designed and intended to be a clear and transparent description of how your data may be used

Right of Access

You can write to our Data Protection Officer asking what information we hold on you and to request a copy of that information.

Right of Erasure

You have the right to have your personal information deleted when there is not any compelling reason for it to be processed.

Right of Rectification

If you believe our records are inaccurate you have the right to ask for those records concerning you to be updated.

Right to Restrict Processing

In certain situations, you have the right to ask Ferne to stop or suppress the processing of your personal information.

Right to Data Portability

Where we are processing your personal information under your consent the law allows you to request data portability from one service provider to another. This right is largely seen as a way for people to transfer their personal information from one service provider to a competitor.

Right to Object

You have an absolute right to stop the processing of your personal information on the basis of legitimate interest, direct marketing and processing for purposes of historical research and statistics.

Right to object to automated decisions

In a situation where a data controller is using your personal information in a computerised model or algorithm to make decisions “that have a legal effect on you” without human intervention, you have the right to object. Ferne Animal Sanctuary does not undertake any complex computerised decision-making that produces legal effects.

If you would like more information on your rights please see the ICO’s explanation.

Marketing Preferences

We only want to contact you with information that will be of genuine interest to you as well as being relevant and appropriate. Therefore, we will only send you marketing information by post, email, SMS or phone if you have given us clear and specific consent to do so. If at any time you change your contact preferences or withdraw your consent and opt out, then the most recent preference will be used

Types of personal data we collect

Depending on your interaction with Ferne, we’ll collect the following types of information about you:

  • Your contact details, such as name, postal address and email address
  • Your date of birth
  • Your financial information such as bank account details
  • Your giving history
  • Your Gift Aid declaration
  • A record of our communications with you
  • Your communication preferences
  • Your next of kin details, for example if you are a volunteer or employee.
  • Your interests, and reasons for your support
  • Information collected as part of our rehoming service, such as details relating to your personal circumstances.
  • Information about your animal, such as their behaviour, medical conditions, and treatments as part of the adoption process
  • Photography and videography, such as images at events, case studies and other marketing materials
  • CCTV video footage for security purposes

Sensitive information

Ferne will sometimes collect sensitive personal data in connection with our rehoming services (for example that the right animal is rehomed with you), or where you volunteer or apply for a role with us. In these cases we will obtain your consent to process this data, or alternatively ensure that we have a valid legal basis for doing so, such as when it is in the substantial public interest.

Where does this information come from

Most personal data we process is given to us directly by our supporters, customers and volunteers in the course of their interactions with us. We may also receive your personal information when you donate to Ferne through third-party services such as Just Giving.

How we use your data

In simple terms, your personal data may be used to help us effectively deliver our charitable services or to help us raise funds for those charitable services.

We have summarised below the different reasons why we do this and how we use your data will depend on the nature of our relationship with you.

Taking in animals

  • If you have contacted us to give up your animal for adoption, we will use the information you provide us to establish how we can best look after your animal while it is in our care
  • To assess how we might safely and permanently rehome your animal
  • To enable us to meet the relevant legal requirements where they apply to animals brought into our car

Reporting lost or found animals

  • To register details of lost or found animals for the purpose of re-homing or re-uniting animals with their owners

Rehoming animals

  • If you have registered to rehome an animal from us we will use the information you provide us to help us find you the right animal
  • To allow us to carry out preadoption and postadoption home visits
  • To provide you with aftercare services once you have rehomed an animal, such as Pet Plan
  • To allow the microchipping of the adopted animal
  • To communicate with you regarding our wider work and how you might support Ferne in other ways


  • To enable us to recruit volunteers
  • To support and train volunteers and ensure their safety
  • To enable us to communicate with volunteers regarding their volunteering work, the wider work of Ferne, and how they might support in other ways

Fundraising and Marketing

  • To send you marketing, including @Ferne Magazine, updates about our animals, general information about rehoming, volunteering and various ways you can support Ferne, including fundraising, events and campaigning
  • To manage, facilitate and record financial transactions, including communications between our supporters & Ferne, associated with fundraising
  • To manage events and fundraising activities
  • To manage and communicate with supporters who are Friends of Ferne, sponsor an animal, or have purchased an annual pass
  • To ensure that as many supporters as possible maximise the value of their donation through Gift Aid


  • If you have got in touch with us, or we have been notified, about leaving us a legacy

Pet Care Scheme

  • If you have got in touch with us about leaving your animals with Ferne in the event of your death, we will manage and administer your future Pet Care

Fundraising Events

  • To process any registration fees, monies raised, for example through sponsorship, and to administer the event
  • To collect and store images and videography with the purpose of promoting future fundraising events


  • To process your donation and send you a thank you letter
  • To keep you updated on the impact your donation has made
  • We may also use your personal information for the recovery of Gift Aid (where you have completed a Gift Aid declaration

Online Shop Purchases

  • To fulfil all order for orders for goods and services


  • To enable us to record, consider and reply to all enquiries


  • To send you surveys
  • To carry out research in relation to our supporters and services


  • To enable the Sanctuary to select and recruit staff

Photography & Video

  • To archive and store images and videos for historical interest and event promotion

CCTV Footage

  • To record CCTV for the security of the Sanctuary

How long we keep your data for

We would never seek to keep your data for longer than you would think reasonable. In our GDPR and Data Protection Policy we set out a retention schedule that indicates how long we hold personal information and when it is deleted or archived.

If you would like to know how long we keep data for then please do contact us using the contact information at the top of this privacy notice.

We are registered with the Fundraising Regulator, and we follow the Fundraising Regulator’s

Code of Practice – fundraisingpractice/

Contractual relationships

In some cases, we will be under a contractual obligation to provide you with goods and services, which means that we have to process your data in order to fulfil those obligations. Some examples of this include if you are a Friend of Ferne, an Animal Sponsor, or if you are rehoming an animal from us, or purchasing something from our online shop.

A legal obligation

Sometimes we may have a legal obligation to process information about you – for example we are obliged to keep financial records including Gift Aid for six years. We’re also required to keep a record of your communication preferences, in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation.

Data sharing

Ferne will not exchange or sell your personal information to another organisation for their own marketing purposes.

However, there are some situations where we may have to share your personal information with other organisations. An example could be sharing your details to reunite you with a lost pet, or to update microchipping databases. In some cases, we may have to share data about you when requested to do so by statutory agencies in accordance with any legal obligations.

We may also share your data with our contracted suppliers, and external service providers, such as our:

  • Email service providers;
  • Website management;
  • Database provider;
  • Fulfilment houses;
  • And fundraising agencies

In these situations, the relationship between Ferne and the third-party data processor will be governed by a contract and strict security requirements will be in place to protect your personal information.

Third party websites

Our website may include links to other sites, not owned or managed by us. Please note that when you click on one of these links, you are entering another site. We cannot be held responsible for the privacy of information collected by websites not managed by us, and encourage you to read the privacy statements of these linked websites as their privacy policy may differ from ours.

Cookie Policy

Cookies are simple text files stored by your web browser that provide a method of distinguishing among visitors to the website. We use cookies to identify your browser as you visit pages on our website. Cookies created on your computer by using our website do not contain personally identifiable information and do not compromise your privacy or security. Cookies allow us to gather anonymous information. Cookies also allow us to provide more relevant, targeted content and are used on our trading website to keep track of items in your shopping cart.

When you use the Ferne website, social media pages (such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram), subscribe to any of our services, donate to us and/or make an online purchase or sign up to an event, you agree that unless you have set your computer’s browser to reject cookies, we can place them on your device and use that data in accordance with this policy.