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Zoo could add to tourism economy of Staffordshire

A zoo in Staffordshire, which is looking for new owners, could add to the tourism economy in the county, according to a councillor.

Cllr Mark Winnington, Cabinet Member for Economy and Infrastructure at Staffordshire County Council says the area already has a growing tourism trade, so a thriving zoo could also become popular with visitors.

Staffordshire has a booming tourism economy, up around 35 per cent over the last four years and I’m sure with some good investment and clever marketing the zoo could become a real hit with visitors.

We have a rich tapestry of visitor attractions here in Staffordshire with Alton Towers, one of the country's leading theme parks just down the road, and a host of other exciting places including Cannock Chase and the majestic Shugborough Estate near Stafford – and Blackbrook is certainly one of the quirkier attractions.


Staffordshire zoo still looking for new owners

The entrance to the park Credit: Staffordshire County Councl

A zoo in Staffordshire, which is in administration, is still looking for new owners.

Meerkats at the zoo Credit: Staffordshire County Council

Blackbrook Zoological Park, near Leek, has more than 200 types of animals including penguins, flamingos, Emus, tortoises and meerkats.

It is thought the zoo would be available to buy for about £350,000.

Three endangered monkeys born at Trentham Gardens

These primates are traditionally found in the Mountains of Algeria and Morocco Credit: ITV News Central

Staff have welcomed the birth of three baby primates at Trentham Monkey Forest – all boys – two of which were born of the same day.

"Barbary macaques are considered an endangered species," said Primatologist and Monkey Forest Director, Sue Wiper.

“This is a lovely time of year for us. We have several babies each year but to have two in one day is unusual and exciting. We celebrate every birth as a very positive step in our conservation programme," she added.

Visitors to the forest will be able to glimpse the babies holding on to their mother’s where they keep warm and feed.

The park is expecting more arrivals in the coming weeks.

The Barbary macaque is gregarious, forming mixed groups of several females and males. Credit: ITV News Central
Wild populations of Barbary macaques have suffered a major decline in recent years. Credit: ITV News Central