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  • FREE Admission for Mums 25TH-26TH March 2017
  • Admissions open today 10:00AM - 3.45PM
  • Closes today at 4:30PM
  • Car park closes at 5:00PM
  • Opens tomorrow 10:00AM - 4:30PM
  • Admission only available at Melton Terrace entrance (LA12 0LU)

Message From Cumbria Zoo Company Limited

The decision in front of Barrow Borough Council 6/3/17 relates to the application for Mr Gill for a fresh licence.

Cumbria Zoo Company’s application to hold a zoo licence has been submitted and we will have our licencing inspection later this month and the licencing process will then continue.

We are aware of the decision to refuse Mr Gills application. Safari Zoo remains open and CZCL need your support.


Cumbria Zoo Company Limited (Cumbria Zoo) was formed in 2016 with the purpose of taking over the operation of South Lakes Safari Zoo. In November 2016 Cumbria Zoo gave notice of their intention to apply for a zoo licence under the Zoo Licensing Act (1981). Whilst awaiting the licencing process, due to be finalised in the second quarter of 2017, Cumbria Zoo officially took over the operation of Safari Zoo on the 12th January this year. Subsequently, the whole zoo site came under the operational control of Cumbria Zoo on the 23rd January 2017.

We are passionate about our animals and about ensuring a culture of care and love, meeting their needs to showcase our animals and allowing them to engage with visitors, whilst being valued and respected. Cumbria Zoo is thoroughly committed to delivering high standards of animal welfare for the animals in our care and others impacted by our conservation activities. We have a global approach to meeting our animal welfare needs, focusing on the physical needs of the individual animals as well as their psychological requirements. We aspire to the model of the ‘five domains’, aspiring to meet all of the requirements our animals need to have optimal quality of life.

Our team are focused and strive on a daily basis to provide opportunities and choice for our animals. Our philosophy is to ensure animals in our care are provided with an environment that is both stimulating and challenging. To support our commitment, we have surrounded ourselves with consummate professional zoo consultants knowledgeable and well respected within the zoo profession to develop and implement best practice across our animal operations and meet our wider vision.

Our efforts have not gone unnoticed and despite the short time in which we have had sole operation of the site, we have developed and mitigated many of the welfare concerns that were inherited when we took over. We acknowledge that we have a long way to go and we never accept that we cannot improve our animal welfare provision. It is core to what we believe and what we do. However, words mean nothing – they are a philosophy and an idea. That is why we believe in action rather than looking to blame individuals or groups that may have led to the recent historical situation reported in the press. Our actions demonstrate our commitment through what we have achieved in the last few months and through the difficult process of reviewing where we were, what had to be done to make short term gains in animal welfare and plan for the future ensuring as we develop and welcome guests through our doors we can be proud of what we have achieved and know we have provided, and continue to improve upon, optimal animal welfare.

We have demanded of our consultants complete transparency and openness throughout the review process. A large proportion of the documentation released by Barrow Council was proactively provided by Cumbria Zoo to meet the requirements of the zoo licence inspection process as well as providing evidence of our robust welfare, operational and husbandry systems evolving at Safari Zoo. These include, but are not limited to:

  • The commissioning of a complete animal welfare audit, including a review of mortality and morbidity statistics over the last five years; complete housing audit and stocking density review; nutrition audit; and development of effective enrichment programmes, to allow identification of areas of welfare concern and to allow rapid steps to be taken to implement positive change both in the short and the long term.
  • A review of veterinary services, preventative and curative health provision, with a permanent veterinary nurse joining the team in late 2016 and the provision of new partners in animal health care to be implemented in March 2017.
  • A complete review of population management, group structures and group dynamics to ensure rationalised numbers of animals are found on the site, with a reduction in many group sizes to ensure effective use of our facilities and resources, always aiming to provide optimal welfare.
  • A proactive programme of maintenance and rebuilding across the animal enclosures, identifying priorities and addressing them in a sensible and practicable fashion. This is clearly seen with many changes occurring in the last four weeks including new hard stands for the hippos, improved substrates for the Chilean flamingos and penguins, large outdoor enclosures for our primates where previously they were limited to indoor housing only, and many others.
  • A complete review and cultural change programme with regard to animal management, husbandry and welfare delivery. Ethical review programmes became proactive and effective tools for change, supported by senior management support of positive welfare changes across all species in the collection.
  • These are just some examples of the far reaching and positive changes that are occurring across the site through Cumbria Zoo’s actions,. We know we have much more work to do to get to the levels we are striving for. Many other examples can be found in the online documents published in the Borough of Barrow-in-Furness Licensing Regulatory Committee 6th March 2017 Agenda, specifically Appendices Q, S, U, AA and BB.

In addition to the positive welfare and cultural changes that have occurred this year we are proud to announce that Cumbria Zoo Company Limited has been offered (and accepted ) the opportunity to buy South Lakes Safari Zoo Ltd, the former operating company managing Safari Zoo.

Questions have been asked of our dedicated team’s ability to enforce the changes needed. We know we can and we have demonstrated our commitment to Safari Zoo, the animals in our care and the legislative requirements of a modern operational zoo. Over the last six weeks we have been in complete control of the zoo and we have made significant improvements in many areas of the animal operation. In this period Safari Zoo, under the operational control of Cumbria Zoo Company Limited, has been inspected twice by Barrow Borough Council Officers and Secretary of State Zoo Licence Inspectors (18th January and 9th February 2017) and the feedback has been positive, with progress and improvements directly attributed to the hard work of Cumbria Zoo.

One such example of this trust in Cumbria Zoo was demonstrated during the January inspection where a zoo closure direction order was considered because of failing welfare standards in the Tambopata Aviary that was outside of our control at the time. The inspection team approached Cumbria Zoo and following discussions with South Lakes Safari Zoo Limited the area was handed over to Cumbria Zoo control and the area reviewed with mitigation strategies immediately put in place to resolve immediate and longer term welfare concerns.

The current situation is that South Lakes Safari Zoo is operated by Cumbria Zoo Company Limited, with Mr David Gill remaining the licence holder. The licence application for Cumbria Zoo is under review and the zoo can only operate under the licence of Mr Gill until the zoo licence for Cumbria Zoo is determined later this year. Mr Gill has clearly demonstrated his wish to pass his legacy to a new team whom will take the zoo forward in a positive, responsible manner ensuring legal compliance and best practice in animal husbandry, animal welfare and optimal guest experience in a safe, engaging environment for all the family. Mr Gill has no management, operational or other role in the operation of the Safari Zoo. Our formal inspection to assess compliance with the Zoo Licensing Act (1981) and the Secretary of State’s Standards of Modern Zoo Practice takes place in March and it is at that inspection the Secretary of State Zoo Licence Inspectors, eminent professionals and licencing officers will judge the suitability of Cumbria Zoo’s zoo licence application and make their recommendations to the Licencing Committee.

When Cumbria Zoo Company Limited took over operational control of Safari Zoo we took on a zoo with many challenges, without a penny in the bank, with responsibility for nearly 80 staff and significant financial liabilities. We believe in the zoo, in ensuring our animals are well looked after in a safe and suitable home and thank everyone for the support demonstrated by our many visitors, friends and colleagues over what has been a difficult week. It is because of the support we get from friends, family and visitors we can continue to develop and put into action our passion to make Safari Zoo a zoo that the team here can demonstrate to the world we are a positive force for change – both in the care of the animals on our site, the ability to engage our guests with the natural world and our impact to make effective changes through our conservation and educational programmes.

We have work to do, we know we do. A modern zoo should continually strive to be better in all it does. We are pushing hard to meet our goals, without compromise to achieve high standards for the animals in our care and for our staff and local community and we drive forward to earn Safari Zoo its place in the modern zoo community. Your support is all the more vital now.

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Safari Zoo

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Explore - Discover - Adventure

Safari Zoo News :
  • Rare Giraffe Calf Born 21.3.17
  • Rhino Calf Born 1.10.16
  • Snow Leopard Cubs Venture Outside
  • Red Pandas Arrive
  • Meerkats Arrive
Hear - Touch - Smell - See
Feed your senses and the animals too

Welcome to all new SAFARI ZOO. We are the UK’s first SAFARI ZOO, a whole new concept in zoos not seen anywhere else. From the Swahili word meaning journey or expedition SAFARI ZOO is a unique journey into the animal kingdom.

Come face to face with and discover Rhinos, Lions, Tigers, Bears, Hippos, Wolves, Snow leopards, Jaguar, Giant otters, Primates, Vultures, Penguins and much, much more at the UK’s most interactive animal park and Europe’s only Safari Zoo.  You’ll have a fantastic adventure immersed with some of the rarest wildest animals on the planet.

Join the keepers to hand feed giraffes every day, walk in amongst and hand feed penguins; wander amongst and discover kangaroo, lemurs, monkeys, free flying birds – including (for the brave) vultures and condors all living wild in the park. (Hand feeding wristbands are available to purchase T&C’s apply)

SAFARI ZOO - YouTube Playlist

  • Giraffe Encounter
  • Interactive Animal Area
  • Kangaroo Encounter
  • Lemur Encounter
  • Walk Through Free Flying Vulture & Condor Avery
  • Penguin Encounter
Photo Credit - Mark Skellorn

Random Volunteer/Visitor Videos - Facebook Videos

Generated by Facebook Photo Fetcher 2

Trading Post shared Safari Zoo's photo. ... See MoreSee Less

Heading out of town today? Then why not visit our Trading Post coffee shop for an early or late lunch. We have meals ranging from Chicken Korma to traditional Fish and Chips we even have a range of cakes for afters! Visiting us is free!! We are open from 10am - 4:30pm everyday at Safari Zoo - LA12 0LU


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There is still time to make a great Christmas Eve afternoon out. Make your way down to Safari Zoo before 1:45PM to feed our Camels, Giraffe & Reindeer, Visit Santa and Ride our Road Train all on our £8pp Christmas Wristband! Why not mark the day you made a new Camel friend by picking up one of our cute new Camel cuddly toys for just £8.45 in The Trading Post Giftshop. Find Us at LA12 0LU, Last Admission 3:45PM, We close at 4:30PM Today.


Trading Post shared Safari Zoo's post. ... See MoreSee Less


Trading Post shared Safari Zoo's post. ... See MoreSee Less


Trading Post shared Safari Zoo's post. ... See MoreSee Less

The Trading Post has hundreds of handmade artisan gifts from around the world to make that perfect Christmas Gift this year. Explore this years unique stock in our growing online storefront and up close everyday from 10AM-4:30PM along with Safari Zoo at postcode LA12 0LU. (View in Fyuse App for HD & info overlays) www.freewebstore.org/safarizoo/Souvenirs___Gifts/cat640836_577570.aspx


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Take full advantage of the weather and come down and see us today! The last Monday of March 2017!

Safari Zoo is open daily 10am until 4.30pm!

Adults are £16.50, Children under 16 are FREE (up to 4 free children to 1 full paying adult)

LA12 0LU
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What a weekend!
The fabulous weather topped off another great week here at Safari Zoo and we hope all you mothers have had a fantastic Mothers Day!

Don't forget we are just as fantastic during the week, we are open everyday 10am until 4.30pm!
£16.50 per adult, Kids Under 16 are FREE! - Up to 4 free children with 1 full paying adult 🙂

Our new arrival to our Giraffe family, an adorable male calf also still needs a name! So don't miss your chance to name him! Just £1 per go - Ask on Admission for details.

LA12 0LU

[email protected]
01229 466086
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Happy Mother's day to all the mums out there. Come see our mum's or mums to be, Eloise with her newborn giraffe calf; our 2 rhino mums with calves mosi and spud. Our first ring tail lemur babies of the season; we've mums and babies in the primate house; spring is certainly in the air. It's free entry for mums today and up to 4 kids free with a paying adult and there's a great forecast. ... See MoreSee Less

A sneak preview of our very latest arrival. Keepers arrived at work this morning to be greeted by this extra special and very rare arrival in the Africa House.


Come along and join in with our Hippo experience this weekend, for just £10 per adult and £5 per child this is a behind the scenes encounter. Book on arrival.
You will also have a chance to meet our new baby giraffe born on 21st March. If you would like to you can even have a chance to name him for £1 per go, with lots included for the winner. Please ask for details.
We are open daily from 10am until 4.30pm. Admission is £16.50 per adult and Children Free. Mum's free this weekend. *T&C apply. Follow postcode LA12 0LU
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A fantastic day here at safari zoo the weather is warm and sunny so our top troop of ring tail lemurs have been let out and about in World Wide Safari. You can spot Mum and babies inside for a couple of weeks, as they are kept in until babies are strong enough for their wild existence in the trees. ... See MoreSee Less

Ten year old Pixie has brought a pair of wonderfully striped infant Ring Tail twins to SAFARI ZOO's troop. Come hear their calls this weekend by booking a private Mini Lemur Encounter for just £10 Per Adult & £5 Per Child - Limited availbilty - Book on arrival. Don't forget this is the last FREE admission weekend, Don't miss out! LA12 0LU /// 10AM - 4:30PM /// #FreeFamilyDaysOut


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This weekend visit our new baby giraffe born 21st march. Today was his first trip out onto the yard in the sun Numbers to the Africa house will be restricted so come early. -The forecast is good so hopefully he'll be outside with mum Eloise and family. Remember mums are FREE this weekend ... and kids are always free. Up to 4 kids free with one adult paying £16.50.


This weekend visit our new baby giraffe born 21st march. Today was his first trip out onto the yard in the sun Numbers to the Africa house will be restricted so come early. -The forecast is good so hopefully he'll be outside with mum Eloise and family.

Remember mums are FREE this weekend ... and kids are always free. Up to 4 kids free with one adult paying £16.50.
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Why not come along this weekend and bring along your Mum as a treat. We are open from 10am until 4.30pm and Mum's are FREE! Standard admission is £16.50 per adult and up to 4 Children free.
Follow postcode LA12 0LU!
As you can see from the photo our new baby is doing really well and has been enjoying the sunshine with Mum. Our Africa building is open daily from 12pm to 1pm and we ask for £1 pp which all goes towards extra heating and bedding for the babies.
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Looks who's galloping about confidently already! Lovingly being nursed by mum Eloise and trying to keep up with new friend plus fellow baby of the group Bonamanzi, We can see our new Giraffe calf settling in well.

Don't forgot sons & daughters bring your mum this weekend and they will receive FREE admission to SAFARI ZOO.

LA12 0LU /// 10AM - 4:30PM /// 2017 Family Friendly Admission Offer £16.50 Per Adult (16+ Years) with up to 4 Children FREE
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One year old little Koopa is such a mummy's boy. He just can't give enough hugs to loving mother Nirmala. Seen here with dad Manis keeping a close eye over the group.

Why not show your Mum some appreciation this Mother's Day weekend by treating them to a FREE day with all our animal families. Simply bring your Mum with you this weekend and they will get FREE admission! Also anyone booking onto our brand new Mini Pygmy Hippo Experience will also get FREE admission included. Adults 16+ £10, Children 7-15 £5. Min age 7+ years. Call 01229 466086 ext 0 for more information and to book your slot.

Our White Handed Lar Gibbons are remarkable primates with even 41 year old grandmother figure Gail effortlessly moving around at high speed. Their speed & bipedal ability at height using their arms as counterbalance just has to be seen for yourself. As shown here with our little SAFARI ZOO family of individuals they can vary in colour from dark brown, black, red-buff to a pale fawn. However one feature (Given away in their name) is always the same a white fringe framing their black faces along with white upper sides to the hands & feet. The deciding factor to a Lar Gibbons pelage (Hair Colour) being dark or light is a genetic inheritance from their parents, However the dark form is the dominant allele (Brockelman 2004)

LA12 0LU /// 10AM - 4:30PM /// #MothersDay /// 2017 Family Friendly Admission Offer £16.50 per Adult (16+ Years) & up to 4 Children go FREE
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