HUNDREDS of hard-working hens who spent most of their days cooped up in battery cages will begin the first days of their new lives of freedom today as they meet their new owners.

The British Hen Welfare Trust is re-homing hundreds of ex-battery hens at a pop-up hen collection event in Hinton Parva.

Each of the hens this weekend are already spoken for, but the trust is eager to hear from anyone who would like to offer a patch in their garden for the hens to forage, scratch, and peck, to their hearts' content.

Local co-ordinator, Laura McCulloch, said: “These wonderful hens are so full of character, you can’t help but fall in love with their unique personalities. They make amazing pets, and their tasty eggs are an added bonus. There’s nothing like eating cake made from eggs that have come from your own back yard.”

The national charity, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, is best known for its pioneering work in re-homing commercial laying hens destined for slaughter after Jane Howorth founded the trust.

A pop-up Hen Collection will also be held in Hinton Parva on September 20.

There are around 16 million hens kept in colony cages in the UK. The charity has so far found retirement homes for around 470,000 caged hens, all of which were destined for slaughter with the help of more than 300 volunteers.

The trust also provides education about the caged eggs hidden in processed foods, like pasta, quiche, cakes and mayonnaise so consumers can make an informed choice when shopping.

The charity asks for a donation for the hens and if you would like to adopt a hen. For more information call Hen Central on 01884 860084, email or visit