Longleat Safari and Adventure Park unveils elephant sanctuary plans
Longleat Safari and Adventure Park has unveiled ambitious plans for a proposed new elephant sanctuary.
The plans, which have been submitted for approval, include a 994-square-metre heated accommodation area with deep sand floors, natural sky light panels, automated feeding systems and a specialist treatment area.
An extensive, ten-hectare outdoor space will feature a large grassy paddock, rocks, log piles, a giant browse frame, sand pits and the 'Thirst Pockets Elephant Spa' which will give the elephants a pool to utilise.
The new sanctuary will offer a permanent home for Anne, Britain's last circus elephant, who has been cared for at Longleat since April 2011 after secretly filmed footage showed her being abused by her former groom.
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Longleat CEO, David Bradley, said: "We have been working hard on this project ever since Anne first arrived with us and have been overwhelmed by the generosity and support of the public.
"Donations both from visitors and members of the public will help part-fund the multi-million-pound development with the majority of the costs being met by Longleat.
"As part of the plan we have consulted extensively with other animal collections around the world as well as welfare experts, English Heritage and Natural England.
"It has been an incredibly complex and highly-detailed process but we are confident the proposals we have submitted will deliver an elephant rescue and rehabilitation facility which will utilise cutting edge knowledge to provide for the specialist needs of the elephants."