Marwell Zoo in Hampshire to reopen next week

Credit: Jason Brown

Marwell Zoo near Winchester has announced it will reopen on Monday (29 June) to members only.

The general public will then be allowed in from next Friday (3 July), for those who have pre-booked tickets.

The zoo will be limiting numbers each day to ensure guests can keep a safe distance so all guests, including members, will need to book online before they arrive while payments at the zoo will be card only.

Tickets will be released four days ahead with members being allowed to book from Thursday 25 June, and the first general opening day available to book on Monday 29 June.

Marwell Zoo was forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic, but has now brought in a raft of safety measures to keep staff, animals and customers safe upon its reopening.

The light is very much at the end of the tunnel and we’re delighted to be opening our gates again to welcome back our guests after being closed for three months. When we do reopen and see those smiling faces, it’s going to be a tremendous privilege."

James Cretney, Chief Executive, Marwell Zoo

Safety measures include two metre floor distance markings at enclosures and queues, new one-way routes on narrow paths, multiple hand sanitisation points, stringent cleaning and signage to inform visitors.

All indoor animal areas will remain closed and there will be no animal talks, touch tables or train services.

The indoor cafes will not be open however there will be outdoor catering outlets where takeaway food and drink will be available as well as extra picnic areas.

Credit: Jason Brown

During the zoo's closure, the charity Marwell Wildlife raised more than £50,000 to maintain running costs, such as animal feed and bedding.

James Cretney says: "We’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity of our community during these unprecedented times and after being closed for three months and limiting our ticket numbers once we do reopen, our road to recovery will be long. You can help us secure the future of wildlife for generations to come by joining us as a Marwell member, donating, visiting us and ticking the Gift Aid box, adopting an animal or even starting your own fundraising activity. Thank you in advance for your unwavering support and patience."