Love your Zoo!
PUBLISHED: 14:01 05 July 2011 | UPDATED: 19:39 20 February 2013
Rosalind Smith discovers why Newquay Zoo, and the people who work there are such an inspiration for Cornwall.
The family friendly resort of Newquay hasmany thing to boast-fantastic beaches, beautiful surrounding countryside and a fantastic communty spirit. As well as all this it has Newquay Zoo, a lovely charity that is doing great things- both internationally in terms of conservation and locally in terms of inspiration about the natural world. Here we meet some of the members of the team and discover why we should all love Cornwall and Newquay Zoo.
Lorraine Reid, Events manager
Cornwall is a great place as it has such a friendly atmosphere, which was the reason why I used to come down with the family from scotland every year on holiday. It would take 10 hours in a car, and although we could have gone halfway around the world in the same length of time, we always preferred to come here. One of our favourite places to visit was Tintagel, and I even have photots of the kids, taken each year as they were growing up. wtanding on top of the castle. Now I live here, it's a dream come true! My role at the zoo is so varied and no two days are the same. It is great when we see familiar faces coming back each year. We benefit the local community as well as our own charity. While I am quite hands-off with the animals, I still get to walk past a lion every day and chat to a meerkat on my break. How many people can say that!
John Meek, Animal collections Manager
No day is the same and that is the main reason why I love my job. I don't just get to work alongside some magnificent animals but what I do helps them both in the zoo and in the wild. Newquay Zoo is making huge progress with international conservation projects and that is something that I am proud to be part of. My favourite animal at the zoo changed daily but my current favourites are the black wilderbeest- they are really incredible animals. Cornwall is a great place to to live as there is a real focus on outdoor life. Getting out and exploring the coastline, the woodland and the towns with the family is a great way to spend a weekend, and I particularly enjoy going to Padstow and eating fish and chips on the quay.
Lottie Owens, Events/Education Assistant
I moved down to Newquay from Birmingham to study, and found my foundation scienc degree gave me a great backhround for my work at the zoo. I now work full-time here - part-time with events. I love hosting birthday parties in paticular, as the children are so excited about their day, and meeting the animals, and I hope thatI manage to inspire them to think more about conservation and the role that they can play. I love living in and working in Cornwall. The cliff path walk around Fistral Beach is stunning and one of my favourite placesin the entire world.
Nicole Howarth, Keeper
I amsoexcited to work at the zoo. With somany graduates struggling to find employment, I have been given a fantastic opportunity here. When I fist visited I was impressed with the dedication to animal conservation - especially the in-situprojects - so it is great for me to gain valuable experience in a buisness with such strong enviromental credentials. The zoo is a unique and special enviroment in the same way that Cornwall is - everyone wants to get involved and help each other out- it's a friendly welcoming atmosphere. I studoied my defree in Cornwall and use my qualification not only working with lemurs at the zoo but also as a volunteer for Cornwall Wildlife Trust and Blue Reef Aquarium. I just love living in Cornwall and I am thirlled to be here.
Polly Vogel, Education Officer
I like the fact that the zoo is asmall and friendly and hasn't become too corporate. To be working somewhere that is so involved in wildlife conservation, and to be offered opportunities to get involved myself and to teach others about the work we are doing, is definitely a motivation when coming to work! Cornwall has some pretty spectactular coastline. I especially love Mawgan Porth because I can ride my horse, Archie, on the beach there, but I also liek Falmouth, Padstow - anywwhere by the sea. My favourite animals at the zoo aare the zebra, but I also like the ring tailed lemurs - they are so friendly and one of the few animals that our visitors can get up close to.
For further information visit www.newquayzoo.org.uk