Bristol Zoo Reopening After Coronavirus
Bristol Zoo Gardens and Wild Place Project are planning to reopen to the public in a ‘phased approach’ with official government guidance due soon.
At the start of this week, Bristol Zoological Society called for an urgent review of its government enforced closure since the end of March, warning the popular attraction ‘may never recover’.
Dr Justin Morris said: ‘We have now reached a point where the future of zoos, including Bristol Zoo Gardens, is seriously at stake. Our staff, volunteers, visitors and supporters are outraged and perplexed at this decision.
“We are watching other venues and shops re-opening and it is absolutely heart-breaking that we are not allowed to welcome our visitors back as well. We simply can’t believe this is happening.
“We have a living collection of animals to continue to care for and all of the costs associated with that. We cannot furlough all of our staff and we must also ensure that our sites are secure and maintained.’
Now the society is looking at opening Wild Place Project first with Bristol Zoo Gardens opening at a later date.
Wild Place Project is a wildlife conservation project in South Gloucestershire, with 50 acres of outdoor parkland.
Staff have been working on new hand-washing stations, cleaning regimes and implementing one-way routes to keep visitors safe. There will also be new timed ticketing systems to control the flow of visitors
Bristol Zoo says: ‘Despite the news that zoos can plan to reopen, we are certainly not ‘out of the water’ and we are taking every day, very much, one step at a time. We have been closed for 3 months, and with 85 per cent of our income coming from our visitors and Members, this has had a devastating effect on our resources – this is money we depend on to fund our conservation projects at home in the UK and overseas.
‘There is no doubt that we will continue to feel the impact for months, if not years to come.’
Updates about the opening of Bristol Zoo will be available on their website: https://bristolzoo.org.uk/updates