You're welcome to take a tour of our lovely cat shelter in Swanwick, in return for a donation of cat food or litter. To make an appointment, or to discuss rehoming one of our rescue cats, please get in touch using one of the methods below. We regret we are unable to rehome kittens under six months to homes where there is a child under five.

Opening hours: Visits by appointment only please. Tues-Sun (closed Mon), 11am-4pm. Volunteers 8am-6pm.
Call: 07941 806536.
Adoption fee: £75 (£20 deposit to reserve)
We also have a boarding cattery that helps support the rescue side of things, check out our beautiful cattery on and our fabulous reviews on

Saturday, 14 February 2015

An appeal for donations - can you help?

Winter is a difficult time at Woodland Nook. People are feeling the post-Christmas pinch, plus the shelter needs heating 24/7, regardless of how cats are living there. 

This is why Jane is making an urgent appeal for donations. She says: “Lack of funding is now a problem which is why I've only got seven cats in the shelter. It’s so sad because I know there is a desperate need out there and I could take more babies as I have the room but not the money.”

Averaged out over the year, the shelter’ s weekly costs are £362, which includes £150 for consumables such as food, litter, medications and cleaning supplies, £40 for electricity, £15 for an extra large wheelie bin... the list goes on. 

Any repairs to the shelter are on top of this, which is why Jane is so grateful for a fantastic £1,000 towards repairs to the isolation section of Woodland Nook, but the bills keep coming in.

For this reason, Jane is inviting supporters to donate £5 a month (or whatever you can afford) to help keep Woodland Nook financially afloat. This can be set up through your bank as a standing order. If you are able to do this to help a wonderful cause, the bank details are:

Woodland Nook Cats Home
Yorkshire Bank
Sort code: 05-07-15
Account no: 47127069

If this is not possible for you, for whatever reason, Jane is always grateful for donations of consumables, such as cat litter, cat food pouches (not biscuits while Loki is at Woodland Nook, due to his dietary requirements) and cleaning materials. The shelter even has an Amazon wishlist, so you don’t even have to lug heavy items around... you can have it delivered straight to where it’s needed. Go here for details. 

Thank you so much for anything you can do to help.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Chaos in the kitchen!

Look at the mess which greeted our Sunday volunteers yesterday! Kitchen roll everywhere, the roll completely emptied and and shredded!

Of course, we can’t be sure who created this mess but the finger of suspicion is pointing towards...

... Bob!

Saturday, 7 February 2015

The story of Felix

Felix is one of Jane’s ‘special’ cats, having been brought over from Crete to live with her at Woodland Nook.  He’s everybody’s friend and, while he may be a little (ahem) overweight, that’s nothing compared to the problems he had early in life. Here Jane tells his remarkable story.

Felix is in my heart and my soul. He found me, he needed someone to help him, he was desperate and clever enough to search for me.

It’s just so amazing and mind-boggling that he suddenly appeared out of nowhere and sat right next to me on the bench.

The next day we found a local veterinary practice and bought Frontline, Drontal and ear cleaner! Felix had really dirty ears and so he was wormed, treated for fleas and had his ears sorted! Good job Jane, just like being at home. He was so gentle with me doing all this to him although he did grumble a little but he knew I was helping him. 

For the whole of the holiday, he never left my side and we became best friends. I could feel the need in him, I just wished that I could get him home to the UK.    

When we had to return home, I was distraught at the thought of having to leave behind beautiful Cretan King. I left him as much food as I could on the last morning before we left for the airport. 

Months went by until finally we were back in Crete. We landed at night but, as soon as we got to the villa, we began our hunt for Felix. “Please God, let him be alive,” I thought. But nothing. I called for him all night, I couldn't bear it. I stayed out until midnight even though we were tired from our flight,, but there as nothing. 

We spent most of the next day at the villa, venturing out only for a little shopping. Still there was no sign of Felix at all. We explored the whole seven acres of the plot and felt awful.

Night-time came again and we put cat food out; wet meat, biscuits, thinly sliced ham, too. Half an hour later I went back to inspect the bowls of food just outside our French doors. 

I stood over them, feeling very tearful, then… a faint cry! Oh my God, he was here! 
“Felix is here!” I shouted to Paul. 

Felix came right up to the bowls and started noshing away at the food furiously; he was absolutely starving, so thin, he had seconds and started to slow down with his eating. He polished everything off as I watched with such happiness in my heart… and relief that he was alive. 

I was so grateful, so very grateful. If there is a higher being in the clouds, well, I thanked them several times over and promised always to do my utmost to help any cat and kitten I could.

We stayed for a month and Felix was my shadow, my companion, my friend, my soulmate. 

Again that dreadful time came and we had to leave. 

By this time we had made friends with a wonderful couple who lived on the island and were involved in cat rescue. Paul and I had been helping them whenever we could. 

But I knew how stretched they were and, sad to say, nothing could be done at that time to bring my Felix home. 

So Paul and I made Felix a shelter from a cardboard box, we strapped it down to one of the chairs outside and bought thick, comfy towels to line it. Felix loved it and must have felt loved and that he ‘belonged’ at last. 

A few months went by and we returned to Crete.

Felix was there at the villa; thin again, his nose was a mess, looked bitten and scratched and sore. I treated him for fleas and worms, this time I’d gone prepared, taking products from home! 

Normal people take towels, swimming costumes, clothes… well I had the same with the addition of cat meds. I was glad I didn’t have to do any explaining at the airport!

We were staying for a month again, so straight away I asked my friend to help me find a flight for Felix, or a space with a van man. But she told me flights were few and far between and there was not a van man in sight! 

But I didn’t give up, I thought ‘We have a month, let’s pray for a miracle’. 

I got Felix neutered and micro-chipped so that was two things less to worry about as these are requirements for travel. 

The end of the holiday loomed and with just five days to go Paul and I sat outside the villa, Felix on my knee. I was close to tears at the thought of leaving him again. I just couldn’t bear it. I watched him sleep on my lap, so happy to be with me, fed, warm and loved; he didn’t know that he would soon have to fend for himself again! 

Then, a miracle. The phone rang.

It was my friend from the island and she said, “I’ve got a flight for Felix, but it’s expensive…” 

I interrupted her: “Book it, book it! IT doesn’t matter how much, thank you, I can’t tell you how much this means to me!”

Tears duly arrived, dripping onto Felix which made him meow in his sleep. If only I could explain to him that he’d never be hungry or lonely again because he was coming home!

And so, on the morning of our flight, my friend took Felix in at her cattery, had him vaccinated, including the rabies vaccine he needed for travel. He soon has his own passport, too. 

She cared for him and loved him for me. She arranged absolutely everything for him; vet trips, passport, transport. She took him to the airport for me and made sure he was safe and on the plane!  She was so tired and worn out with helping others but she did all this for me. 

I will never forget how my friend helped me in my desperate time. As I’m normally the one helping other people with their cat situations, this was a new experience for me - to be the one in need of help. 

This is why I will always help The Cats Pyjamas Rescue whenever and wherever I can, by sending crates full of food, meds, carriers and litter trays with the help of the lovely volunteers of my shelter, Woodland Nook. I will never forget what she did for me that day… and for Felix, of course!

Felix arrived at Gatwick and Paul and I went down to fetch him. It was raining hard but I hardly noticed, I was so excited to be reunited with Felix again.

This was two years ago. Felix now lives at Woodland Nook; he loves being in the shelter and is grandad to all the kittens; he grooms them and tells them off when they are naughty. He is quite ‘chunky’, shall we say, but he is still in the mindset that each meal may be his last. He is mine and can come into the house when he is good and ready; at the moment, though, he is so content at being in the shelter with the others.

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Hard to home... easier to love

Ask any cat shelter volunteer and they will tell you that some cats are harder to rehome than others. Needless to say, it’s the cute little kittens which are snapped up first. Any cat older than 12 months is going to find it more difficult... and elderly kitties really struggle. Throw in a bit of bad temper and they barely stand a chance unless somebody very special comes along.

But lately we have had three very special cats find very special owners and all three are doing extremely well. Let’s take a look...

Nobody could have predicted that Loulou would turn out to be so hard to home. Brought over from Crete at a fairly young age, she was pretty, playful, affectionate and fun. But she did have an unfortunate tendency to lash out, often with no warning. One attempt at rehoming failed and Loulou looked destined to become a long-term resident at Woodland Nook.

But just look at her now! Still playful, still affectionate... and now so much more relaxed. She is also totally adored!

Poor Kitty did nothing wrong but fate dealt her a tough hand. She was rehomed from Woodland Nook several years ago but then, on Christmas Day in 2013, her owner died and she was returned. Her age was against her, and her discomfort at being around so many other cats made her irritable. For over a year she watched as other cats came and went, but she was left behind, sitting on top of the cupboard, not particularly happy.

But look at her now – she looks like a different cat. She’s not ready to sit on laps yet but enjoys sleeping on her new mum’s bed, watches the birds through the patio windows and is happy to be stroked.

A terrible background of abuse led Ceefur to become unpredictable and frequently aggressive. But years – and I mean YEARS – of love and care in the safe hands of Woodland Nook really calmed her down. After an operation, she was allowed to recuperate in the quieter environment of Jane’s cattery, Top Cat ’n’ Tails at Hilcote, and thrived so much there that she stayed for over a year.

Ceefur (now Polly)
Ceefur is currently enjoying a trial period in a new home. We don’t have any pictures of her yet but the trial is going extremely well. Ceefur has a new, more dignified name: Polly. She now loves being stroked and even sits on her new owner’s knee! This is incredible progress for a cat who had just a hard time.

So next time you’re in the market for a cat, please don’t feel it has to be a cute little kitten. The rewards are huge if you can taken on a hard-to-home cat and give it the love and security it deserves.