Cornwall Monkey Sanctuary faces financial crisis as Covid-19 shutdown keeps visitors away

The Monkey Sanctuary is facing a financial crisis. Credit: ITV News

The future of Cornwall's Monkey Sanctuary is under threat as the charity which runs the centre revealed it will lose more than £70,000 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The sanctuary near Looe, which takes in neglected and mistreated primates, has been unable to open to visitors since before lockdown.

The financial impact has been huge - Wild Futures estimates it will lose at least £200,000 as a result of the closure.

The charity relies on visitor income to provide food and medicine for the monkeys, and to run its hugely popular education schemes.

The sanctuary estimates it could lose around £200,000 during the closure. Credit: ITV News

It's been quite a scary and enormous financial hit

Rachel Hevesi, Wild Futures

Rachel Hevesi, director of Wild Futures, said: "It's been very quiet. We were not just closed to the public but we had to create our own isolation bubble.

"For a while we could only have a limited number of people on site, some of the team actually came to live here. We shut down because we knew that there could be a very serious threat to the primates themselves."

All of the monkeys at the sanctuary are rescue animals. Many have been mistreated  or sold as part of the primate pet trade. The sanctuary's first priority is to look after their welfare.

The charity decided there is not enough space to properly socially distance and to keep the monkeys, staff and visitors safe.

To donate to the charity's emergency appeal, click here.

The sanctuary is home to rescue animals. Credit: ITV News