RE-Opening FAQs

Pre booking is essential

Is it safe to visit?

We have been certified as Good to Go! The health and safety of our visitors, staff and animals is always our highest priority.  The Government has announced that zoos could re-open from the 15th June 2020.  Please read the steps we have taken to ensure your safety above.  We have also limited the number of people who can buy tickets each day to ensure that there is plenty of space for social distancing on our 100-acre-site.

What guidelines are you following?

We are following Government Guidelines, working with our local authority and using the advice given from BIAZA (British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums) and NFAN (National Farm Attractions Network).

Risk Assessment

Is soft play open?

Our indoor play areas remain closed at this time whilst we work to make them covid secure. 

Is it card only?

Whilst we would prefer card or contactless payments we are currently accepting cash due to widespread national card payment issues. 

What measures have been put in place to ensure visitor safety?

We have limited the number of spaces available on-site as well as using timed entry to reduce the risk of crowds at the ticket office.

We have increased our hand washing facilities on site and brought in additional toilets as well as adding antiviral sanitiser stations around the site.

What's on?

 Are outdoor play areas open?

We have opened our outdoor play areas including the sandpit, The Maze, our accessible play area and Elephant Butt Slide. Parental supervision is required in all play areas to ensure social distancing. 

Our  Welly splash, straw den and indoor play areas remain closed following government guidelines. 

Are indoor viewing areas open?

The indoor animal viewing areas remain closed at this time including the Reptile house, Farm Animal show pens, Giraffe House and Rhino House. This is to ensure social distancing.

You can still see the farm animals, Rhinos and Giraffes enjoying their outdoor paddocks as well as the Crocodile from the outside of the reptile house. If you don't see the animals at first we would recommend returning to the enclosure later in the day as our animals have the freedom to move between outdoor and indoor areas. 

Do I need to Pre-book?

Yes, all tickets need to be pre-purchased online before your visit to ensure we are limiting the number of visitors on site.  Tickets are available in timed entry slots and may be sold out on the day of your intended visit, so it is advisable to purchase a few days before.

If you have a gift ticket, you may present this at the Ticket Office on arrival.  Any additional tickets required, however, will need to be purchased online.

If you have a bought gift voucher with us, you will need to purchase a ticket online but use your voucher code to redeem the cost.

 

How do I book?

To book tickets, please go to our website (link) and purchase however many tickets you require. We are not selling family tickets as we need to keep things as simple as possible for keeping an eye on capacity.

 

What happens if you are a member? 

Having reviewed our system, we are now allowing members entry without pre-booking.  Please bring your membership card with you for scanning. If you are visiting with non-members, they will need to pre-purchase tickets to avoid disapointment.

 

 

What if I have a gift ticket?

If you have a ticket which looks like the ones on the left, please just turn up to visit the zoo. However, if you are coming with anyone, who isn't covered by the ticket, such as another adult, an under 2 or an essential carer, they need to book a slot.

 

 

 

I won a ticket and it’s run out.

All tickets will be extended by 90 days as this is the duration that the zoo was closed.

 

I booked a ticket for before lockdown for a date when you were closed, how do I book? 

You can ring us and we can rearrange your ticket that you've already purchased.

 

My membership expired during the lockdown, will it be extended?

All memberships will be extended by 90 days to compensate for the duration of our closure. Meaning you will gain back the days before your expiry.

 

I have a Keeper Experiences/Encounters, can I book it in?

We are following Government and BIAZA guidelines on animal experiences. Currently, to ensure the safety of our visitors, staff and animals, we are unable to book in Keeper Experiences and Encounters. Please bear with us, we will endeavour to restart them as soon as it is safe to do so.

 

Why are tickets not discounted or family tickets available

 

The lockdown resulted in the zoo being closed for 3 months of the 6 months peak season with zero income.  It costs approximately £3,000 a day to maintain the zoo, even during closure where our keepers continued to provide excellent care for our animals, specialized food and veterinary care.  On re-opening, to assist with social distancing, we have significantly reduced the number of visitors we are able to have on-site, which is reducing our income further.  We have reduced numbers of staff at the Ticket Office and Office and so we are offering a simplified ticketing system for purchase online prior to your visit.

As government restrictions are eased, we will be able to offer more of our usual facilities.  We thank all our visitors and members for their continued support at this time.

 

I’m vulnerable, is there a time I can come?

If you are vulnerable or shielding someone who is, we recommend following your doctors and government guidelines, which currently state to stay home. We would love to have you on-site when it is safe for you.

 

I’m from wales and we will still be locked down, and we have tickets due to run out.

We will extend your tickets the amount of time we have been closed, from the time that lockdown is lifted in Wales and Scotland.

 

I’ve made a purchase from you during this time, when can I expect to receive it?

We will process all orders as soon as we can bring staff back from furlough. Please bear with us and thank you for your patience.

 

Will we have to queue?

Yes, while we have created timed ticket entry, it is likely that there may still be a queue at certain times.  Signage will show you where and how to queue safely onsite.

 

Can I leave the zoo to collect items from my car?

Currently, we are asking that people do not go in and out to their cars to minimise people around our ticket office.  However, if it is essential to leave and re-enter the zoo, you will need to exit through lane 4 and join the end of the queue to re-enter.  Please ensure you have your membership card or ticket with you.

 

Where can I eat?

All our food outlets will be open and providing takeaway food only. You may bring a picnic, but we ask you to bring this inside when you first enter to avoid re-entering the zoo.

Re-Opening Menu

 

What is available on site?

All our amazing animals will be on show as well as our bird of prey flying display which will take place twice a day on Rhino Hill. Our Elephant Talk and Big Cat Talk will also take place outside as we have the space to spread out. All other talks have been cancelled to help with social distancing.

 

Are the animals safe?

Our Keepers have been working during lockdown to ensure the highest standard of animal welfare and all our animals are safe and well looked after.

 

Should I wear a face mask?

The UK government has announced that face coverings will be mandatory in shops in England from Friday 24th July. This will also include the Gift Shop and Cafes at the zoo. Please be prepared to wear your face covering in other enclosed spaces on site in line with Government guidelines. There is no need to wear a face covering if you are under 11 or are medically exempt. We ask visitors to be mindful that not all exemptions are visible, so please be kind to others. 

Is there safe parking available?

We have ample free parking here at the zoo.  This includes disabled parking near the front entrance.

Can I bring my dog?

Unfortunately we are not able to have dogs on site (even small ones) unless they are registered assistance dog.

Are mobility scooters/wheelchairs available?

Mobility scooters are available and must be pre-booked online. We will clean them in between customers.

 

Will animal food be available to feed?

From Saturday 11th July Animal and bird food will be available to purchase from our gift shop. We ask that you wash you hands before and after feeding the animals as well as remembering to socially distance. 

Volunteers

Our volunteer coordinator will be in touch with our volunteers to get them back on-site as soon as it is safe.

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