A FAMILY has said a sad goodbye to Shaun who could have staked a claim to be the borough’s oldest sheep.

The Gilbody family in Thelwall had looked after Shaun the ewe for 15 and a half years after taking her in when they moved to their Stockport Road home.

She died following treatment for arthritis in December.

Shaun came as an addition to a pot bellied pig called Mr Eggs who they had offered to take in after he was rescued following a fire at a property in Padgate.

Michelle Gilbody, aged 47, said: “We had moved in a house that had an acre of land. The field was 5ft high and we had cut it down.

“Mr Eggs was in the Warrington Guardian and I fell in love with the picture on the front page and said to my husband Ian could we take him in.

“When we went to collect the pig he had befriended Shaun. She was found in someone’s front garden and she had fallen in love with Mr Eggs and they slept together in the same shelter.

“She slept with him right up until he died at 13 and a half. They were really good friends.”

Shaun and Mr Eggs were the first of the menagerie of animals the family have taken in which include Dillon the Donkey, Chockey and Alfie the alpacas and Kunekune pigs Florence and Tyrone.

The family vet was amazed to find Shaun had lived for so long and she was the oldest sheep she had treated.

“She had become a little old lady and she had arthritis and she was stiff legged. She was very friendly, you could stroke her which is unusual for sheep.

“She loved Ian and if he came out of the back door she would shout straight away.”

And it was not just the family who grew to love Shaun and Mr Eggs.

“The field backs on to the Transpeninne Trail and we have a notice board and have pictures of the animals on it. Everybody loves them and know their names.

“On a Sunday when people have done their Sunday dinners they leave their peelings behind and all the animals come running for them.“