06 January 2015

Our visitor numbers reached 1,432,867 – the highest in our 84 year history.

STANDING PROUD: After achieving our busiest year of all time in 2014, new arrivals such as Rothschild giraffe Zahra have seen visitor numbers get off to a strong start in 2015.

Membership also hit record levels at 57,835, up 7,827 on the previous year and 1,507 animal adoptions were taken out in December – the most ever for a single month, smashing the previous best of 1,185 in 2009.

The figures come after we were named as the best zoo in the UK by users of travel website TripAdvisor.

Managing director Jamie Christon said:

We’re thrilled that the zoo attracted such a huge amount of interest – locally, nationally and internationally – in 2014 , the highest visitor numbers in our history. As a conservation and education charity we very much rely on visitors to help fund the great work we do to protect species around the world and so our heartfelt thanks go to each and every person that has come here and supported us.

The zoo is constantly evolving and looking to offer new and exciting experiences and with what we have in store later this year, we’re confident we’ll have even more to wow people with.

And we’re hoping the impressive numbers will be bettered again when our new £30m Islands development opens later this year.

Islands, the biggest expansion in UK zoo history, will recreate habitats from the Philippines, Bali, Sulawesi, Papua, Sumba and Sumatra and showcase species such as Sumatran tigers, Sumatran orangutans, cassowary and Sunda gharial crocodiles.

Jamie added:

Islands is incredibly ambitious. It’s unlike anything ever attempted before in the UK and aims to bring conservation to life – taking visitors on an adventure where, for a few hours at least, they feel like they’ve been transported to South East Asia.

We’re incredibly excited about the year ahead.

How the inside of the Monsoon Forest, part of Islands, will look.