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United Kingdom Great Fosters Zoo , Egham , Surrey .

Discussion in 'Zoo History' started by zoowhosewho, 4 Feb 2020.

  1. zoowhosewho

    zoowhosewho Well-Known Member

    22 Mar 2019
    This establishment was set up in the grounds of Great Fosters Mansion.... I cannot be sure of the exact date it was set up but there was mention of it as a "Walk Through Sanctuary" in 1971 ... and in 1970 a Vervet Monkey called Tiddles escaped
    By April 1972 the advert attached appeared and states that there are Woolly Monkeys , Malayan Otters and Free flying Macaws
    Very little is written about the Zoo and I have even contacted the current Hotel Owners who know nothing about its past
    February 1987 it was reported that the Owner of the Zoo was attacked and bitten by a Celebes Macaque
    February 1995 a Civet Wild Cat escaped but was found in undergrowth near to its cage
    August 1996 the Proprietor was reported to be Mr Dave Robertson and there was a 7 week old Male Puma called Tye taken on by the Zoo
    Great Fosters Mansion was owned by the Sutcliffe family from 1931 to 2018 when it was purchased by a Hotel group and the same Hotel Group still own it today..

    I lived quite close to the Zoo but never visited it but it was known for its Woolly Monkey Sanctuary it's such a shame nothing seems documented that I can find anyway
    1st Image Advert for the Zoo from 1972 and 2nd image Great Fosters Mansion from 1960
    Terry Thomas, FBBird and Carl Jones like this.
  2. zooboy

    zooboy Well-Known Member

    13 Jan 2008
    You are correct in saying that very little has been written about this place; it escaped the attention of all the authors (Schomberg, Robins/Radford, Anthony Smith, the AA and Shire Publications) of the zoo books that were produced during the 1970s. The only note I had was that it "opened in 1973" but that is obviously incorrect as your account goes back to 1971; perhaps it was re-branded "Woolly Monkey Sanctuary" in 1973? But I had a recollection of reading "something somewhere" and have just located a brief account in the, long defunct, National Zoological Society of G.B. newsletter, from a visit made in 1972. The prime exhibit was the group of (1 Humboldt's and 6 Brown) Woolly monkeys, kept in similar lines to those at the other (and un-connected) Woolly Monkey Sanctuary at Looe. There were 6 other species of monkey, Red deer, Pumas and "other small carnivores", and birds included owls, flamingos, Scarlet ibis and a White-crested guan. The owner, Dave Robinson, had a habit of taking animals out of their cages to show visitors, including walking a Puma cub around the place on a lead. He had planned to move the collection to the Bristol area partly because of a number of issues including vandalism. However your report, that cover up to 1996, indicates that he stayed there.
    Carl Jones and zoowhosewho like this.