Cotswold Wildlife Park

Cotswold Wildlife Park, near Oxford has become the first in the country to recognise the service and sacrifice that animals played in war by supporting our Purple Poppy Appeal. Tens of millions of horses, mules and donkeys, dogs, cats and pigeons were sent to the Western Front, but less well known is the role that camels, zebras and elephants played in helping to move munitions and the injured, and that monkeys, bears and lions were taken as mascots to raise morale amidst the hardships of war. We are indebted to Park gardener, Maggie Hicks for knitting over a hundred purple poppies and to Debbie Ryan and other members of the team who raised £600 to support our chosen charities, which Maggie presented to us when we visit the Park recently.

We were given a tour of the magnificent landscaped parklands and gardens and had the privilege of meeting keepers and seeing up close and personal their animals, including the camels and lions, George and Sheldon the giant tortoises and for us the highlight was meeting the rhinos, including new edition Stella and old favourite Alan who is pictured with our Alan. The Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens exhibits over 260 different species of animals and around 350,000 visit every year.

It is situated two miles south of Burford, on the A361, Oxforshire. OX 18 4JP. Telephone 01993 823006 or email:

Cotswold Wildlife Park

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