Lost Great Ashby tortoise suffers broken shell in narrow escape

PUBLISHED: 15:45 31 July 2020

Charlie the tortoise has been reunited with his owner Christopher Hewer after escaping from his Great Ashby garden. Picture: Joanne Wilks

Charlie the tortoise has been reunited with his owner Christopher Hewer after escaping from his Great Ashby garden. Picture: Joanne Wilks

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A tortoise that is believed to have been hit by a car after escaping from his owners’ back garden has miraculously survived after being rescued from the roadside.

Charlie the tortoise suffered a broken shell after it is believed he was hit by a car, but is expected to make a full recovery. Picture: Joanne WilksCharlie the tortoise suffered a broken shell after it is believed he was hit by a car, but is expected to make a full recovery. Picture: Joanne Wilks

The drama unfolded on Facebook last Tuesday when driver Debbie Rose narrowly avoided hitting Charlie the tortoise as it crossed Great Ashby Way.

She posted on the social media site: “Is anybody missing a tortoise? Looked like one crossing Great Ashby Way near Old Bourne Way. Luckily I missed it, not realising what it was at first. I went back to get it but another car had stopped already and looked like they were heading to Whitehorse Lane, so maybe taken to the vets.”

Unbeknown to Charlie’s owners – Kathy and Christopher Hewer – he had escaped from their back garden in Old Bourne Way, Great Ashby, when a gate was momentarily left open.

Kathy and Christopher’s daughter, Joanne Wilks, said: “Charlie’s always in my mum and dad’s back garden. My mum went to water the flowers in the front garden and in the time the gate was open he managed to get out. He’s slow, but clearly not that slow!”

Charlie the tortoise has been reunited with his owner Christopher Hewer after escaping from his Great Ashby garden. Picture: Joanne WilksCharlie the tortoise has been reunited with his owner Christopher Hewer after escaping from his Great Ashby garden. Picture: Joanne Wilks

Debbie’s Facebook post piqued people’s interest in the area, and alerted Kathy and Christopher to the fact Charlie was missing, after their son-in-law spotted the post and they consequently checked and discovered Charlie had disappeared.

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The driver who had stopped had indeed taken the tortoise to Great Ashby Veterinary Surgery, where it was discovered his shell had been broken after most likely being hit by a car.

Joanne said: “The vet put a splint on him and wrapped him in a cast. They didn’t know if he would last the night.

“He was in shock and wouldn’t eat or drink, so they kept him there for two nights, before he finally ate a strawberry.

“He has to go back to the vet on Saturday to have his dressing changed, and is on antibiotics and painkillers, but they think he will make a full recovery.

“We want to thank the person who put it on Facebook, because we wouldn’t have known he was missing, and also thank you to the person who kindly took him to the vets.

“Mum and dad have had Charlie for seven years and they love him. Mum was devastated about what happened. She was completely beside herself.

“They’re just happy he’s home.”


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