A HANDFUL of young cats were taped inside a box and left outside an animal rescue building in Whitehaven, and are now the most adored bundles of fluff around.

Seven kittens and a young cat were left outside RSPCA Cumbria West's branch on Market Place, Whitehaven, last week, and staff are unsure how long they were sat in the cold for.

But the branch are pleased to say the youngsters are all healthy, safe and well, and are enjoying their time at a foster home while they prepare to be adopted.

And they won't need to wait long to find homes, as after their situation was posted on social media, the branch has been overwhelmed with forever home offers, and their adorable faces have been shared hundreds of times around the area.

Foster mum Ally Chester loves having the nine-week-old to 18-month-old kittens around, and has used the constellations to name the twinkling stars of the town.

The oldest of the group has been named Seren, which is Welsh for 'star', and she happily snuggles up with babies Andromeda, Cassiopeia, Lyra, Orion, Phoenix, Leo and Scorpius.

"They're a little bit skittish after what they've been through, but they're definitely coming around," Ally said.

"They're dead cheeky, and of course they're all gorgeous!"

Branch manager Ann Lainé felt the same, and said: "They're beautiful little things – just fantastic.

"We don't think their owner was a bad person, they just couldn't cope, and we're glad that they left them outside our branch rather than simply abandon them."

The well-loved kittens are waiting to complete their health checks and injections, and will be ready for a forever home soon.

For more information on the little stars, or to adopt another animal who needs a loving family, contact RSPCA Cumbria West branch on 01946 693585.