Leading conservation charity Twycross Zoo has announced that a multi-million pound major new development, The Gruffalo Discovery Land, will open this spring, in a UK first.
The new four-acre attraction, located at the Warwickshire zoo, brings together the much-loved characters from best-selling children’s book The Gruffalo, created by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, and a conservation organisation that exists to protect wildlife, preserve endangered species and educate the next generation on the importance of protecting our planet.
Twycross Zoo’s aim for the new experience, developed in partnership with The Gruffalo brand owners Magic Light Pictures, is to inspire and inform more children than ever before about the importance of conservation and the natural world. Featuring real-life animals, animatronics, film clips and much more, The Gruffalo Discovery Land at Twycross Zoo will allow visitors to encounter Fox, Snake, Owl, Mouse and the Gruffalo along their interactive journey through the Deep Dark Wood.
The announcement comes following research by Twycross Zoo that reveals over three quarters of children, as young as four, have a good or extensive understanding of extinction or endangered animals. However, when it comes to the solution, only 16 per cent have a strong understanding of how conservation efforts could help to tackle climate change, showing that more needs to be done to educate the next generation on how they can help to protect our planet.
Sixty-five per cent of parents believe that the less time children spend outdoors, the less they appreciate wildlife and nature, and 85 per cent of parents feel that imaginary characters from books, such as The Gruffalo, have a positive impact on children’s understanding of conservation, and play an important role in encouraging their children to care about wildlife.
Dr Sharon Redrobe OBE, CEO of Twycross Zoo, says: “We hope to spark the imaginations of our youngest visitors about the wonders of nature in this most engaging and interactive way. Even small actions can, collectively, have a big impact on the future health of our planet – and every young person can play their part.
“The arrival of The Gruffalo Discovery Land moves us closer to achieving our 2030 vision to become a European Centre of Excellence for conservation. This brand-new immersive experience will educate more young children than ever before and increase their understanding of the vital role that they will play to ensure our planet thrives in the future.”
The Gruffalo Discovery Land at Twycross Zoo will open in Spring 2022. For further details, visit www.twycrosszoo.org/the-gruffalo-discovery-land/