Weyhill Zoo Park / Weyhill European Wildlife Park , Near Andover , Hampshire

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Weyhill Zoo Park , Near Andover , Hampshire … This establishment opened to the public in 1966 by Reg and Hilary Smith … The Zoo came about after an appearance on the Childrens TV series Blue Peter it was suggested that viewers called into the then farm to see the animals kept there … Apparently hundreds of people arrived at the farm wishing to see the animals .. It was then that Mr and Mrs Smith decided to sell part of the farm to raise enough money to be able to purchase animals and start the Zoo …Initially specialising in European Wildlife including Bears , Wolves and birds of prey …
In 1970 when Geoffrey Schomberg visited the Zoo Park it was developed on 4 acres with 10 additional acres to be developed … He states that there were small Mammals , Monkeys and Birds in the collection … He states that the Zoo was a welcome arrival in the area and well worth a visit ..
By 1975 the Birds of Prey were a firm favourite of the family and in particular Mr and Mrs Smiths son Ashley enjoyed them and the park had their first Public Flying Display in this year
Moving forward to 1976 and on 14 acres it was known as Weyhill Wildlife Park and amongst the collection of animals were foxes, Scottish Wild Cats , Polecats, Squirrels,Various breeds of Deer Raccoon Dogs , Various birds of prey and also Ducks and Geese … In 1977 The Park was now entitled Weyhill European Wildlife Park …in addition to the previously mentioned collection Brown Bears , Moneys and Lynx were also listed …
By 1980 -81 the park changed its name to The Hawk Conservancy as visitors were expecting more and more wanting bigger animals and the Smith family wanted to concentrate on one group of species namely Birds of Prey …
Mr Reg Smith passed away in 1995 …his wife Hilary passed away in 2006 …. The Hawk Conservancy Trust was formed in 2002 and continue to run the Establishment effectively today.
So this establishment changed from Zoo to Wildlife Park to Hawk Conservancy and is still going strongly today
For information on Zoos both existing and old ones join this facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/671948229882510
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