EXCLUSIVE by Eloise Horsfield
A FRAIL elderly couple have been forced to sell their home after being ‘victimised’ for feeding stray cats.
Bob and Jan Brearley, from Redditch, became the victims of a cruel hate campaign in Torrox, involving threats, harrassment and even dog excrement thrown onto their porch.
So vicious became the opposition to their cat-feeding that they eventually had to sell up at half the value of their property.
“It has been a nightmare,” said Bob, 77, who has been left frail from aortic valve surgery, spine problems and a burst stomach ulcer.
Their problems began after they started giving scraps to a pregnant cat at Camping El Pino, where they purchased a Swiss-style chalet for €28,000 six years ago, before spending a further €12,000 on improvements.
The couple were warned by the management not to feed the cats and were shown a petition which had been signed by their neighbours.
However they ignored the petition as they feared that the mother and her four kittens would die without their help.
“They never threatened us with eviction, and we were certainly not the only residents feeding cats,” added former housewife Jan, 75.
Soon the campsite’s manager began making life difficult.
“He’d come round at 6am on a Sunday morning and stand there shouting outside our front door waving these big cages,” said Jan.
“One morning he caught the mother, and was shouting with glee.
“We never saw her again but we have heard they take them away to be gassed.”
But the worst shock was to come when it came to renewing a contact on the land on which their home stood.
“The boss came and said they were not going to renew it and we’d have to move,” said Bob, a former geography teacher. The couple had just two months to find a new owner and move into a two-bed rented flat in Torrox. “We ended up selling the property for less than half its value at just €17,500,” said Bob.