Axe Valley Wildlife Park nestles on the Dorset/Devon border and is home to a wide variety of animals, from 30 snakes (including Davina, the 8ft boa constrictor) and spiders in the warm rooms to a zebra, meerkats, ringtailed lemurs, Eurasian Lynx, cranes, flamingos, peacocks and resident favorite Archie the Armadillo.
But with the average bill for feeding and caring for the animals coming in at around £2,000 a week, lockdown left the family-run attraction on the brink of uncertainty.
Owners Andrew and Jayne Collier are former dairy farmers who diversified, building the park from scratch in the last 15 years. They say: “Having been closed all winter we had high hopes for a successful 2020 before Covid-19 completely ruined this prospect.
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