The North of
England Zoological Society
The role of
the Zoo is to support and promote conservation by breeding threatened
animals, by excellent animal welfare, high quality public service,
recreation, education and science.
The Zoo was
founded by George Mottershead. As a child, he visited a zoo in
Manchester (now closed), and is reported to have been so upset seeing
large animals in small cages, that he said to his father 'when I
have a zoo, it won't have any bars'.
His dream was
eventually realised in 1930 , when he brought his family to live in
the Oakfield house and formed the original collection of animals from
an earlier zoo at Shavington near Crewe.
became the North of England Zoological Society in 1934, and with
considerable skill and enthusiasm, he kept the zoo going through the
Second World War. Rapid expansion followed after the war. 'Always
Building' was a slogan of the time and the Zoo grew to its present
size, and became a charitable trust.
achievement was probably the successful rearing of Jubilee, the first
elephant to be born and raised in the country (1977). He received the
OBE, an honorary degree of M.Sc., and served a term as President of
the International Union of Zoo Directors. He died in 1978 at the ripe
age of 84 having realised his dream of a 'zoo without bars'.
succeeded by Dr Michael Brambell , who came from London Zoo.
Under his directorship, major improvements included the new Penguin
pool, the new Chimpanzee islands complex, the Zoofari Monorail, the
huge 'Europe on the Edge' aviary and the impressive zoo entrance
In 1994, the
Zoo celebrated its Diamond Jubilee, awarding its first gold medal to
Dr. Jane Goodall for her work with Chimpanzees.
the Zoo Works
takes a lot of people to run the Zoo it can be over 500 at the
height of the summer, with seasonal staff, and work placement students
in addition to the full timers.
North of England Zoological Society
Is the formal
name for the charitable trust that operates the Zoo as a Company
Limited By Guarantee. There are no shareholders or distribution of
profits. The Members elect the Council who are the Trustees of the
Society. Council select the Chairman, and committee members, and meet
regularly as Council and Sub Committees of Council to determine policy
and approve plans. They may co-opt additional members to Council.
Maximum consecutive term for Council is six years. The President of
the Society is The Duke of Westminster an honorary post of great
distinction. Vice Presidents, Fellows, and Honorary Fellows may be
appointed. Council appoint the Zoo Director, who is the Chief
Executive responsible for running the Zoo to whom the Heads of
seven Divisions reporting to the Zoo Director, Professor Gordon McGregor Reid which
Animal and Plant Conservation Division
and Administration Division
and Development Division
Throughout the Zoos Divisions, many members of
staff serve on appropriate external committees.
Staff Association, Safety Committee and Environmental Protection Group
provide inter-divisional representation and liaison with management.
The Zoo Director and senior staff sit on Council sub committees.