Until the middle of the 19th century, Battersea Park consisted of marshland and fields where carrots, asparagus and lavender were grown. The area was opened as a public park in 1858 and was used for sporting activities. In 1951 the park was transformed into a pleasure garden as part of the Festival of Britain celebrations, and the forerunner of Battersea Park Children’s Zoo was born.
When the much-loved zoo, formerly run by Wandsworth Council, was threatened with closure in 2003, the Heap family stepped in and saved it. Carol, Roger and Ed Heap have a passion for animals and valuable experience of running two other wildlife parks - the Chestnut Centre Conservation and Wildlife Park in Derbyshire and the New Forest Wildlife Park in Hampshire.
Taking over Battersea Park Children’s Zoo gave them a chance to create a zoo exactly the way they wanted it - turning it into an opportunity for youngsters to enjoy, respect and learn about the animals that we share our planet with.
Battersea Park Children’s Zoo is passionate about conservation and Education. In association with their sister parks the New Forest Wildlife Park in Hampshire and the Chestnut Centre in Derbyshire, we contribute to many conservation programmes.
All of the animals are ambassadors for their wild relatives. They hope all visitors to the zoo, especially the younger ones, may learn to appreciate the amazing animals through seeing them at the Zoo and may want to protect and conserve them for the future.
Battersea Park Zoo is home to a large variety of Mammals, Reptiles and Birds. There are so many things to do and see, but make sure not to miss feeding times! The otters are first on the list with feeding time starting at 11am.