A WILDLIFE rescue group's visitor centre is facing a crisis due to the foot and mouth outbreak.

The facility at the Evesham Country Centre has been closed to the public for the past three weeks and now the cash is drying up.

"We need to get in as much money as we can or in a week's time that will be it," said Martin Brookes, assistant manager of Vale Wildlife Rescue.

He explained: "We shan't be able to pay the wages or the food bills for the animals. It is a desperate situation and there seems to be no end in sight."

The centre's gates are closed to visitors for fear of spreading the disease and there is also fear that the virus might be carried in on the wind.

"With the visitor centre being the fund-raising arm of Vale Wildlife Rescue at Beckford, it is a double blow," Mr Brookes said.

He said that with no animal casualties coming in because people were unable to get out into the countryside, there were no donations. Neither was there anyone in the shop to buy and create funds that way.

"Two or three weeks down the line and it could be the same crisis story at Beckford," Mr Brookes warned.

The crisis caused by the foot and mouth situation, he said, also follows the winter, which is always a very lean time.

"In fact, it couldn't have come at a worse time," Mr Brookes said. "I hope we shall be able to open for Easter and not lose that trade as well."

He feared what might happen to the animals if they did not generate extra cash.

"We shall be faced with a Catch-22 situation of not being able to feed them and not being able to move them," he said.