Animals

Zoo changes name to ‘align better with county’

Paradise Wildlife Park, featured in the CBBC show One Zoo Three, is to become Hertfordshire Zoo.

A family-run zoo is to change its name in order for it to be associated with the county it sits in.

Paradise Wildlife Park in Broxbourne will be called Hertfordshire Zoo from its 40th anniversary in April 2024.

Aaron Whitnall, one of the brothers who run it, said “we are a proud Hertfordshire family and business and think the new name will reflect that”.

“It is also a well-renowned and affluent county so we want to align the zoo with that name,” he added.

Three brothers – Aaron, Tyler and Cameron – help run the wildlife park, which has about 800 animals and sits on land bought by their grandfather in the early 1980s.

Before it was acquired by Peter Sampson, it was called Broxbourne Zoo and, with poor animal facilities, was often considered to be one of the worst zoos in the country.

The Sampson family have turned things around, first as Paradise Woodland Zoo and then as the wildlife park. Mr Whitnall said they want to continue that development.

Three brothers, Aaron (right), Cameron (left) and Tyler Whitnall help to run the family zoo

“We think the new name will enhance what we do, not just on the site but around the world as well,” he said.

“Also, people understand more what a zoo is, rather than a wildlife park.

“We want to continue the development of the site, we want to show the world what a good zoo does and raise awareness that we exist and are something the people of Hertfordshire can be proud of.”

The park has previous said that over the next ten years the plan is to “redefine the entire animal collection” around those threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) red list

Despite a difficult two years of lockdowns and closures, the park has still managed to introduce new habitats such as Land of the Tigers and Sun Bear Heights.

The brothers are also in the middle of filming a second series of CBBC programme One Zoo Three, which chronicles the lives of the trio, who both live and work at the zoo.

Mr Whitnall said they have even more “exciting plans” for the future and think the 40th anniversary is “the perfect time for a new chapter”.

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