Pershore man makes national headlines after saving stranded sheep on Devonshire coast - The Evesham Observer

Pershore man makes national headlines after saving stranded sheep on Devonshire coast

Sonny Rackham 14th Aug, 2023 Updated: 14th Aug, 2023   0

A PERSHORE man has made the national headlines after his valiant efforts to save a sheep stranded on rocks along the Devonshire coast were uploaded on social media.

Chris Oxlade-Arnott, 51 and his wife Jilly, 55, were walking along a coastal path – whilst on holiday in Woolacombe – when they spotted the animal stuck below a cliff among jagged rocks and crashing waves on Monday, August 7.

Jilly Oxlade-Arnott spotted the sheep whilst taking photos of the Devonshire coastline. Photo supplied by Jilly Oxlade-Arnott. s

With the sheep in danger, Chris and his wife – who own and operate The Gallery Pershore – made the difficult decision to attempt a rescue mission with Chris relying on his past rock climbing experience to climb down the steep cliff face and approach the distressed sheep.

Chris told the Observer: “When we first saw the sheep we were very worried about it.

“We knew it wasn’t something to concern the coast guard with so after considering everything I made the decision to try and save it.

“I’m quite sure footed from my time spent rock climbing so we decided it was worth trying.

“My wife was of course concerned but she stayed on top of the cliff to guide me to where the sheep was.

“If anything went pear shaped, she could call for help.”

Chris Oxlade-Arnott navigating his way along the rocks to the distressed sheep. Photo supplied by Jilly Oxlade-Arnott. s

Chris made his way towards the sheep, treading carefully and fighting to keep a good footing on the uneven coastal rocks, as the animal stood frozen and laboured from it’s attempts to get to safety.

The art gallery owner eventually reached the animal and was able to throw it over his shoulder and begin the difficult exit to safety.

Chris added: “When I approached the sheep she seemed relieved to see me. She was exhausted, wet through and was being battered by the sea.”

Chris throws the sheep over his shoulders and makes the return journey to safety. Photo supplied by Jilly Oxlade-Arnott. s

After the 30 minute rescue mission, Chris had saved the sheep and got it back up onto the grass along the cliff edge.

Chris continued: “It was a bit of fun but the hardest bit was climbing up the cliff. We laid her down on the grass, tried to dry her off and comforted her.

“After a while she got back to her feet, joined her friends and started grazing again.

“I was shattered after and the adrenaline had worn off.

“A group of others had spotted me and stopped to watch. When me and the sheep were back safe, they began waving and applauding.”

Chris returns the sheep to safety. Photo supplied by Jilly Oxlade-Arnott. s

The Pershore Gallery owners efforts featured in the popular free Metro newspaper and in the Daily Mail.

Chris and Jilly Oxlade-Arnott. The Gallery Pershore, owners and operators.Photo supplied by Jilly Oxlade-Arnott. s

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