Teenagers save tom's last seven lives
PUBLISHED: 17:19 10 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:31 03 March 2010
BINGLEY, a one-eyed ginger tom owes his remaining seven lives to two Ipswich teenagers who rescued him from certain death.
BINGLEY, a one-eyed ginger tom, owes his remaining seven lives to two Ipswich teenagers.
The nine-year-old cat survived a serious eye infection seven years ago. The second of his nine lives was spent when Bingley, apparently abducted from near his Shotley home, was left to suffocate in a cardboard box in Ipswich.
Only if the friendly cat could speak would it be known how he came to be at Stoke Park shopping centre ten miles away – in a box weighed down by a brick and a week after he went missing.
Bingley's owners can only assume he was taken there by cruel cat-nappers.
And but for the dogged determination of Christopher Gorham and Danny Polson to track down the sound of plaintive meowing, Bingley would be no more.
The two 15-year-old Chantry High School boys have now received massive praise from Bingley's owner, Sally Edgley. She said: "I want to thank them publicly because we thought we would never see our cat again.
"All too often teenagers are in the news for getting up to mischief and doing wrong. This time it is to show that they are not all bad," said Mrs Edgley, an ICT
technician at Sidegate Primary School in Ipswich.
She and her husband had left Bingley in a neighbour's care while they went on
holiday. At the end of the first week, the neighbour became frantic with worry when the friendly cat had not been back to his Gayford Terrace home to eat his food.
"She was beside herself and couldn't understand where he had gone," said Mrs Edgley. "When we returned home we too began a frantic search for him.
"Eventually I phoned the Cats Protection League, who put me in touch with Judy Mills at the Ipswich branch.
"I couldn't believe it when she told me she had Bingley there. When we were told how he had been found I contacted the boys to let them know how much we appreciated them saving our pet."
Describing how they found Bingley, Christopher, of Marigold Avenue, said he and Danny had bought chips at the Cambridge Drive shopping centre and as they began walking back home, they heard a cat's cry.
Christopher said: "We couldn't find out where the meowing was coming from and began searching. Eventually we found it was coming from a box which had been dumped near a trash can behind the shops.
"There was a brick on top of the box. Whoever had left the cat in there didn't mean for it to get out."
Danny made a fuss of the cat and then the pair put him in a nearby garden thinking that he lived nearby.
"But it followed us home and my dad gave it some food. It was really hungry but apart from that it didn't seem to have been hurt, although he was quite skinny," said Christopher, whose father, Colin, took Bingley to Mrs Mills at Cats Protection.
Both boys have now spent a happy reunion with Bingley and his owner. They said they were relieved to see his missing week had had no lasting effects.
And Mrs Edgley said she will be
eternally grateful to them and to Mrs Mills. She said: "Without the help of them all I wouldn't have my cat back. The Cats Protection does a wonderful job and there are no words to accurately describe how much I appreciate everything they all did."
n Cats Protection is a national charity with 250 volunteer branches. Between them they re-home 75,000 abandoned cats each year. To contact the Ipswich branch telephone 01473 690084 or email firstname.lastname@example.org