Bosses at Chessington World of Adventures said they reacted to the relaxing of lockdown with "sheer delight".

Chessington Zoo is already welcoming back visitors and the theme park will reopen on July 4 as lockdown rules are eased.

Around 1,000 furloughed staff have returned to make sure the reopening goes smoothly.

Staff in PPE clean key parts of the resort

Everybody I've seen has really enjoyed coming back to work. They said it was nice to be at home but the last 8 weeks got a little bit laborious. So it's been great to see teams come back in.

Tim Harrison-Jones, Chessington World of Adventures

During the pandemic animals at Chessington had to be fed and cared for but no visitors meant no income.

The park is usually packed at this time of year which means work has been carried out to ensure social distancing.

Paw prints on the floor marking out two metres

Paw prints [on the floor] are set at two metres. Obviously we've had the announcement that we can relax to one metre. We will re-do our calculations and have a look - we have extended our queue lines where we can. And we will also be encouraging guests to wear face masks when they visit the resort.

Tim Harrison-Jones, Chessington World of Adventures

People visiting the zoo at Chessington said they thought "it was about time things started opening up."

The number of guests will be limited and on rollercoasters and space will be left between riders who aren't from the same family.

Rollercoaster at Chessington World of Adventures

What we are trying to do is add an extra layer of protection for those people who are sitting behind just to make sure we are not passing any of the virus onto each other.

Tim Harrison-Jones, Chessington World of Adventures

For more information about Chessington World of Adventure reopening, click here.