A comedy writer and animal rights campaigner is selling up and taking the animals with her.

Carla Lane, who wrote the hit TV sitcoms Bread, Butterflies and The Liver Birds, has put her home at Broadhurst Manor in Horsted Keynes, near Haywards Heath, on the market for £4 million.

Since 1993 she has run her charity Animaline from the site, which has an operating theatre and animal hospital.

The charity, which has a mission to never allow a sick or injured animal to die if it has a chance, receives a supply of organic hay from her friend and former neighbour Sir Paul McCartney's estate.

Now the 69-year-old says she is looking for a cottage for her next home but has vowed to take her menagerie with her.

This includes sheep, goats, horses, cows, emus, ducks, swans, chickens, geese, bats and birds of prey .

However, she said the decision to move had not been made for financial reasons.

She said: "I wouldn't have dreamt of moving away from here but I haven't got a choice.

"This is just a piece of the countryside.

"There are no cars, no people and it's beautiful but it's no good for running a sanctuary because nobody comes to see us."

She has also been reported as saying: "I'm not being a martyr and giving up my house for the sanctuary. I've just been rattling around in this huge old house for far too long and it's time to go."

Speaking to The Argus last year Ms Lane said she was considering remortgaging her home. "I bought the house when I was rich and opened the sanctuary.

"My career has absolutely dropped.

"My accountant is very mournful if I don't do it very carefully now.

"I'm going to take a mortgage out on my house which I hate doing.

"I love every single little creature out there. I love the staff and I love what we do."

Ms Lane said she has been inundated with potential buyers but wants the person who purchases the property to love animals too.

Anyone interested in supporting the charity can call Animaline on 01342 810596 or visit www.carlalane.com/animaline.