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Steve Byrne: Five things I'd change about Guernsey

Steve Byrne: Five things I'd change about Guernsey

Friday 23 March 2018

Steve Byrne: Five things I'd change about Guernsey

GSPCA Manager Steve Byrne is well known for his passionate work at Guernsey's animal shelter and for helping the local community.

With an unbounding enthusiasm for animal welfare, it is no surprise that some of the things he would change on the island he has called home for almost seven years, revolve around our 'furry friends'.

Mr Byrne said: "I feel very blessed to have lived in Guernsey for nearly seven years. It is an amazing and wonderful place where it is a joy to watch our children grow and I am lucky enough to work for an amazing organisation where we help the community and animals 24/7.

"To change five things is a difficult one but maybe these would be some of my priorities:" 

1) Rebuild some of the old buildings at the GSPCA

I'd like to find the funds to rebuild the rest of the older buildings at the GSPCA. We have a site where many buildings date back to the 1940s to 70s and it would be amazing to have a Shelter with all the facilities to the standard of the new build we completed two years ago.  We have just completed our 10 year strategy and this is something that we are prioritising and working hard to achieve. We would love to have a nice shop, reception and visitor area as well as a purpose built wildlife unit to mention just some of the areas we have a focus on and it would also be wonderful if we had more land for the Shelter and to exercise the animals

Building work at the animal shelter

Pictured: The GSPCA during building work 

2) Animal Care Courses

Animal Care Courses in Guernsey would be a wonderful change to introduce and is something that will hopefully soon be a reality. We are about to advertise a new role thanks to funding from States Street and Social Security and working with the Guernsey College of FE we are hoping to start the first ever Animal Care NVQs here in Guernsey very soon.


Pictured: An animal being cared for at the GSPCA

3) Outdoor activities for children on coastal paths

I believe Guernsey is an incredible place to live and to grow up, and for the kids we have some great outdoor spaces,but I think we all struggle as parents from time to time to find things for them to do. As a focus not just for those that live here but also visitors it would be wonderful if there were additional facilities especially around our wonderful coastal paths to entertain the children. There are so many great things you see in other coastal tourist locations we could easily draw ideas from that wouldn't cost a huge amount and would add a diversity to our coast and be great for our youth and young at heart

cliff path 

Pictured: One of Guernsey's south coast cliff paths

4) Guernsey to be plastic free

One thing that has touched many of our hearts has been the plastic pollution we have seen in the Blue Planet 2 programme and wouldn't it be a dream if Guernsey could go completely plastic free. Being surrounded by the sea we see the problems more than most and at the GSPCA sadly that includes the injured wildlife.  If we can all do our bit then hopefully we can improve things for tomorrow.

Plastic free

5) More hours in the day

Finally it would be really nice to have more hours in the day, more days in the week, longer summers and dryer winters.  I am sure there are many of us that don't fully appreciate what a wonderful island we live on and with a young family and running the GSPCA it would be nice to have more time to enjoy everything around us.


Mr Byrne added: "Life is about continual change and striving to do ones best. It is hugely important that we all stop, reflect and look what needs to be changed and appreciated, but to improve things takes motivation and a drive to achieve and as a community and society we are lucky to be in a place where dreams and change can come true.  Thank you to Bailiwick Express for asking me my 'Five things I’d change about Guernsey'." 

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