CHRISTMAS came early at an animal sanctuary near Chard at the weekend.

Ferne Animal Sanctuary, based in Wambrook, held its annual Festive Fayre between 10am and 4pm on December 3 and 4, featuring plenty of family-friendly activities.

Children had the opportunity to meet Father Christmas, while parents made the most of local stalls with craft and gift items. 

There was also a professional Christmas-themed canine photoshoot with Fuchsia Photography, which also hosted a photography session at Ferne in October.

Chard & Ilminster News: Ruth Bailey from Ferne Animal Sanctuary.Ruth Bailey from Ferne Animal Sanctuary. (Image: Steve Richardson)

The animal sanctuary will host another festive event on Saturday, December 10 with its animal blessing service. 

The service will be held in the sanctuary's barn and will be hosted by the Reverend Georgina Vye, associate vicar of St Mary's Church in Chard. 

Guests will be able to join in with Christmas carols and enjoy mulled wine and a mince pie. 

Tickets for the Animal Blessing in the Barn are available to buy online at Ferne Animal Sanctuary's website (