About Bristol Zoological Society

Our commitment to wildlife is centuries old and born out of a desire both to better understand life on our planet and to inspire people to engage with the fascination of nature. Today our mission is focussed on saving wildlife, not alone but together with all the people that we engage and inspire.

Our vision is for wildlife to be a part of everyone’s lives and for people to want to, and be enabled to, protect wildlife now and for the future.

We have identified five objectives that together will support our vision for wildlife to be a part of everyone’s lives and deliver our mission of saving wildlife together:

  1. Saving wildlife
  2. Engaging our public
  3. Creating conservationists
  4. Sustaining our environment
  5. Sustaining our future

By 2035 we will:

  • Grow the proportion of species at our zoo with targeted conservation action to more than 90%.
  • Engage and connect with more than 800,000 visitors and members per annum.
  • Engage and inspire over 90,000 schoolchildren and students per annum – the conservationists of the future.
  • Become a carbon-neutral organisation.
  • Develop the new Bristol Zoo through a major programme of capital investment.

Who we are
Bristol Zoological Society was founded in 1835 and Bristol Zoo Gardens opened to the public in 1836. It is the fifth-oldest zoo in the world, the oldest outside a capital city, and the first one recorded to be called a ‘zoo’. Bristol Zoo Gardens conceived and built the world’s first nocturnal house in 1953, was the first zoo in the UK to breed chimpanzees, gorillas and Sumatran orangutans, and built the UK’s first underwater tunnel in its Aquarium. In 2013 we opened our sister-site, Wild Place in South Gloucestershire, with a vision for it to be a national centre for wildlife and conservation.

For more information about our strategy and our activities: visit our website and our publications

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