Following the most challenging three months in its history
Battersea Park Children's Zoo has now up its doors after three months of closure as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic. Visitors are now able to enjoy the open, outdoor environment whilst reconnecting with many amazing animals, although they can expect a few changes at the Zoo alongside some new enhancements.
The Government’s green light to reopen came as some much-needed positive news for the Zoo team on site, as well as fans of the animals, following what has been the most challenging three months in its history. The zoo relies entirely on its visitors to fund its work, which includes animal welfare, conservation projects both in the UK and overseas, and while also paying the wages of its professional staff.
Closing the Zoo as a result of the pandemic has put years of work at risk. With no income to fund expensive daily running costs, the team launched a Crowdfunder appeal and were overwhelmed by the support they received. Donations came in from as far afield as Australia and with the support of celebrities including Hugh Grant, fans of the zoo raised £20,000. These donations helped the zoo push through the three difficult months in lockdown but the challenge is far from over. To come out on top and begin to recover, it needs the public back through its doors, enjoying the outdoors and experiencing some of the amazing animals.
In order to maintain a safe, enjoyable experience for visitors the Zoo has implemented a number of measures allowing guests to follow the government's latest social distancing guidelines. From online ticket bookings, a one-way route around the zoo and a takeaway cafe for outdoor picnics in the park, visitors can support the Zoo and experience a great day out after many weeks at home.
Signs at zoo encourage social distancing
To avoid crowds the Zoo has suspended its popular animal feeding talks, but has instead introduced fun new virtual talks using smartphone QR code technology at different locations around the plot.
After many months without this much-loved pillar of the community, it is hoped that local people can begin to feel some sort of normality by once again visiting Cynthia the pig, Ant and Dec the emu and many other much-loved animals living there, including lemurs, meerkats and otters.
Keeper Jamie Baker said, “The past few months have been really uncertain for all zoos in the country and without visitors all of our important conservation and education work is at risk of being lost.
“Hopefully now that we can open, we will start on the road to recovery. The whole team can't thank the public enough for their ongoing support, thanks to their generosity and kind words we will continue to fight for the environment and educate the next generation on how to save the species that share our planet with us.”
For visitors who are unable to visit the zoo just yet, donations are still being accepted through the crowdfunding appeal.
For directions and further info go to www.batterseaparkzoo.co.uk
The news that English zoos and safari parks were able to reopen was the result of a change in Government legislation during the latest stage of easing lockdown restrictions.
June 24, 2020