Welcome to Fresh Start for Hens

We are a not for profit organisation, run entirely by volunteers who are dedicated to rehoming hens from the commercial egg production sector.

OUR AIM is to ensure as many people as possible are aware of the plight of the commercial hen, and demonstrate that there are alternatives to early slaughter.

OUR COMMITMENT is to rehome as many hens as we can into suitable homes, where they can live out the rest of their natural lives.

OUR GOAL is to educate the public about the ethical benefits of buying free range eggs, whilst supporting the work of British farmers.

Commercially, all laying hens are slaughtered at the age of 72 weeks, when their production drops slightly. Their carcasses are worth very little and are usually sold for dog food, baby food or cheap, processed pies etc. We work closely with British farmers and purchase the hens from the caged, barn and free range systems, just before their slaughter date. While these hens are often referred to as ex battery hens, the old style battery cages are no longer in use, with a new style, enriched colony cage being used instead.

We rehome hens to a diverse range of individuals wanting hens as pets or companion animals. Hens have begun their new lives in town, city and country gardens, allotments, schools and residential care homes. You don’t need to have a big garden to keep a few hens, they will be grateful for the additional years of freedom you can offer them and reward you with their entertaining antics and probably an egg or two. To this end, we do not rehome to people wishing sell them on or for further commercial purposes.

Registering for Hens and Ducks

Rehoming dates:

1st June – 2000 Organic free range hens – reservations now closed!

15th June – 2 farms – 3500 free range hens – reservations now closed!

29th June – 2 farms – 2500 hens – reservations now open!

13th & 20th July – Free Range hens – 4800 – reservations now open!

To reserve hens from one of the above locations or to take part in one of our upcoming rescues, please visit click on the “register” section on the website.

Demand for hens is very high at the moment, hence we are working far in advance. Please ensure you send photos and donation with your reservation to guarantee you get your hens.


Increase to minimum donation

After much consideration, from 1st January 2023 the minimum donation per hen will increase to £2.75.
We have maintained our donation at its current level since 2008, but increases in our operating costs such as fuel and van hire has dictated this moderate rise.
We remain an entirely voluntary organisation who are proud of rehoming tens of thousands of hens each year across England and Wales.
Thanks to fantastic support from our volunteer team and everyone who has rehomed hens from us over the years, we continue to go from strength to strength.
We do appreciate that everyone is feeling the financial pinch at the moment, so we have ensured we have increased by the minimal amount we need to survive. Our rehoming fee remains competitive and favourable when compared with other rehoming organisations, but to ensure Fresh Start For Hens is sustainable and can continue to rehome hens for many years to come, this modest 10% increase is necessary


2024 new dates

We are winding down now to our Christmas break, with just one remaining flock to rehome this coming weekend (9th - all hens are reserved) However, our 2024 diary is filling up FAST, with another 15,000 hens booked in this week alone! If you are interested in rehoming hens early next year, please visit our website to reserve. Not all ...
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September & November 2023 – reservations now open!

**UPDATE** September & 4th November reservations now closed. 11th November will be closing very shortly. Our next rehome will be on 30th September with Penkridge and Selby will be open - 250 hens. The 4th & 11th November will see us rehoming 5500 lovely organic hens from The Macs Farm, we know these girls are extremely popular! The following collection ...
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