Chester Zoo closes gates for two days for UK heatwave following Level 4 warning

The zoo will be closed for two days as UK endures 'extreme' heat. Credit: Chester Zoo

Chester Zoo has been forced to close its gates for two days due to an 'extreme heat' warning.

The zoo has said it wants to keep its animals, visitors, staff and plants safe while the UK experiences temperatures of more than 35 degrees.

Granada Reports Correspondent Victoria Grimes saw first hand today how the elephants were cooling off with a cold shower

Keepers say the zoo will be closed on Monday and Tuesday (18 and 19 July), with the park expected to reopen on Wednesday, 20 July.

A spokesperson from Chester Zoo said: "Due to the extreme heat forecast on Monday 18 and Tuesday 19 July, we will be closed for the safety of our staff, visitors, animals and plants.

"We plan to be back open as usual on Wednesday, but for now, our team of dedicated keepers will of course, make sure all of the animals and plants are safely cared for.

"We do apologise for any disruption to your plans but we really hope you understand."

The zoo added that pre-booked tickets would be extended until July 2023.

A capybara cools down in the water at Chester Zoo. Credit: Chester Zoo

The scorching weather has forced the UK Health Security Agency to issue a Level 4 heat-health alert - described as an “emergency”.

The Met Office has issued the first red extreme heat warning the UK has ever seen, with both running from Monday to Wednesday.

People have been urged to take precautions, with the public urged against travelling unless essential, carrying water at all times and and keeping an eye out for the signs of heat exhaustion.

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