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United Kingdom Birdland, Cromer (1960s/1970s)

Discussion in 'Zoo History' started by SiPorritt, 7 Aug 2018.

  1. SiPorritt

    SiPorritt New Member

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    I'm trying to collate a history of Birdland in Cromer (Norfolk, UK), which was open from the early 60s and closed in early 70s. It was owned by my father Richard Porritt from 1969.

    We have some cinefilm and photos from that period, but would be interested in anyone's memories or photos of Birdland.

    I know a few people have posted a few lines on Birdland and some jpegs of the guide book, plus there is an interesting stock list on zootierliste.de (which I am checking the accuracy of with my father, as I'm pretty sure we didn't have any Northern Gannets!) but anything else would be great.

    Also have a slide show posted HERE - Thanks
     

    Attached Files:

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  2. Andrew Swales

    Andrew Swales Well-Known Member

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    I remember Birdland well, especially now your pictures jog the memory! My childhood holidays were spent at Sheringham, Cromer, Wells and the Runtons, and I also have clear memories of Cromer Zoo, Norfolk Wildlife Park, Kelling Park Aviaries, Kilverstone, Thorney, Wellingborough etc. I have a Birdland guidebook tucked away somewhere, which has a species list in it. We aim to open a display covering the closed collections of the east of England, at Hamerton Zoo Park for next summer, 2019. Our range is a geographic one and covers those collections which influenced my child-hood, to start with at any rate - so will cover those from Basildon Zoo and Mole Hall in the south to Stapleford Lion Park in the north, and from Flamingo Gardens and Southam Zoo in the west, out to the coast. There is quite a list...!
     
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  3. SiPorritt

    SiPorritt New Member

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    Thanks Andrew. Sadly I don't remember it well as I was just a toddler when it closed. We owned the site until 1981 by which time the aviaries were almost all gone - but think the Pengiun pool was still there (it's Seacroft Campsite now). If we can be any help with your display do let me know.
     
  4. Andrew Swales

    Andrew Swales Well-Known Member

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    Hi Si
    I think my visits would have been in its main period around the turn of the decade. My grandfather had a share in a caravan park called Leakes at East Runton which they visited regularly, so I have a number of postcards from my grandmother posted to me as a child - when we get to all our archived 'stuff' over the winter, I will be able to date them. From my memory, I don't think that the ornamental pool with the flowers was the penguin pool. This was concrete, larger and in the middle of the site - from my child-hood memory. The guide-book (in black, white and orange) has a map, and certainly featured the penguins. It is somewhere in my storage - I hope! As a family we visited regularly, along with Great Witchingham, and Kelling - both in their hey-days; along with Stagsden, Peakirk and Flamingo Gardens. Birds were very popular then, the 'reptiles' of the day! - and mammals were mostly still in concrete and bars, which my parents and grand-parents must have not rated, as most of the zoos (other than Whipsnade), I can only remember visiting once. Your offer is very kind, and 'yes please' we will certainly come back to you; for what I expect to be a winter project.
     
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  5. Nanook

    Nanook Well-Known Member

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    Apparently, prior to May 1970, the newly established Suffolk Wildlife Park acquired many bird species from Birdland at Cromer.
     
  6. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

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    I saw Gannets there, adult and juvenile, maybe four of them, apparently storm-driven birds that had been picked up. I've got postcards of the place somewhere.
     
  7. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

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    Now Africa Alive
     
  8. FBBird

    FBBird Well-Known Member

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    I'll look forward to seeing that display next weekend, knew most of those collections well.
     
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  9. Ross Patzelt

    Ross Patzelt New Member

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    Hi the slideshow does not work and the youtube video is private. Thanks.
     
  10. Ross Patzelt

    Ross Patzelt New Member

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    Seacroft does have an outdoor swimming pool not sure if its that