Sanctuary Reopening FAQ
We are pleased to share that we are now OPEN for ADVANCE BOOKING ONLY to limit numbers of people on site.
This is one of several safety measures we have put in place at the sanctuary, so that we can provide a safe experience for everyone.
We hope that you will enjoy meeting our rescued animals and see a little of what we do here, whilst re-connecting with nature (as Brockswood is a predominantly open-air site) after being limited to your home/work for so long.
Please see the FAQ we have put together below with more information about our re-opening. Please note this is subject to change as information and advice alters (Last Updated: 26/08/2020)
Can I Visit Brockswood?
YES, after having to remain closed for so long during the Lockdown, we are happy to announce that we are now OPEN every day! Please remember to BOOK IN ADVANCE of your visit so that we can limit the number of people on site at one time and help you to distance from other households.
Advance bookings are available every hour. We ask that you arrive within the hour you have booked, but you are very welcome to stay as long as you like once you have arrived!
What precautions are being taken?
The health, safety, and welfare of our visitors as well as the Brockswood team members and our animals are our absolute highest priority, and we are taking every precaution to ensure this remains paramount.
The following measures are currently being put in place:
We have created a one-way system around the sanctuary, with areas that cannot be made one-way closed (don’t worry, we are also moving some animals around so that you can still see them!). Markings are also being used on fences to aid distancing, and we have produced additional signage for your information.
We are selling tickets in advance with specific dates/times to control visitor numbers and reduce cash transactions. Those of you with annual/sponsor passes will still be able to use these too, just select the Annual Pass option and don't forget to bring it on the day!
We will not be allowing feeding or petting the animals until further notice. It is thought that animals may act as a “fomite” for the virus - a fomite is usually an object/material which is likely to carry infection, such as ourselves with clothes and hard surfaces. Therefore, there is a risk that if a person with the virus on their hands was to touch Duke the Donkey for example, and then one of our keepers touch him afterwards, this could transfer to us.
We know that you love to get up close to some of our animals, but this is an important measure to protect not only you but also them and our team, as it is not yet fully understood how the virus can interact with animals.
All visitors will be issued with Health & Safety guidelines that you will be asked to follow during your visit. This is particularly important and key to us being able to remain open, so we are relying on your co-operation at this time.
Hand washing facilities and sanitiser will be readily available to you.
Enhanced cleaning regimes will be implemented in high traffic/contact areas to keep you safe.
What are the Sanctuary's opening hours?
Mon-Sun, 10am - 4pm (last entry 3pm).
Can I use my Annual Pass?
Absolutely! We realise many of you will have missed out on using your pass since we have been closed and will be extending these for you. Just select the Annual Pass option when you book your visit and you won't have to pay admission - don't forget to bring it with you along with your ticket on the day!
These are still available to purchase here.
Are the toilets open?
Our disabled/baby change toilet is open for use by all visitors at the moment (with an enhanced cleaning routine), but we have had to close our other toilets for now so that you can easily distance from other households.
Is the café open?
Our café is open for takeaway only at the moment, but you are still welcome to sit out on our picnic benches/play area. We are only selling cold snacks and drinks at this time but hope to build back up to a hot menu as we settle in to being open again, and can do this safely under COVID-19 regulations.
Can I bring my dog still?
YES! We absolutely love meeting your waggy friends. We are currently working on raising money to create a safe enclosed run for your dogs, but for now we welcome well-behaved dogs on leads - our animals are very used to seeing dogs, so it's a great opportunity to socialise your dogs and encourage them to behave appropriately around farm animals.
Is there any reason why I should not visit the Sanctuary?
We respectfully ask that people take responsibility for their own health and the health of the community before visiting us. Please do not visit the Sanctuary if you or anybody within your household are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, or have any underlying health conditions that may put you at risk. If you are vulnerable in any way at all, it is your responsibility to make the right choice for yourself and others around you. Please follow the official Government advice given at: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Can the animals contract the virus? What are you doing to protect them?
Experts worldwide currently do not know all the effects COVID-19 has on both humans and animals. We are closely monitoring the situation and following the recommended guidelines provided by the Government, Local Authority, World Health Organisation (WHO), and various relevant animal-related organisations such as the British and Irish Association of Zoos & Aquariums (BIAZA), as well as our Vets.
Our Animal Keepers are taking every precaution to safeguard our animals, and appropriate biosecurity measures are in place, as always.
Our animal care team continue to ensure that all animals at the sanctuary receive the same care, love, and attention that they are used to receiving all year round. In fact, with several staff locked down at the sanctuary, they are enjoying even more special treatment after hours!
How can I support Brockswood during this difficult time?
Thank you very much for your continued support. This is always important to us but right now we need you more than ever. We understand these are uncertain times for everyone and we are so grateful for any support you can give, no matter how big or small. It costs us around £3,000 per week to run our sanctuary and the pandemic has hit us hard.
You can help us to raise this money for our animals by continuing to visit us, making a donation or even setting up a regular gift to us, buying supplies, sponsoring an animal, volunteering your time with us, or even just spreading the word about us so that more people are aware of our work here with these wonderful rescued animals. We have achieved a lot, but we have big dreams and want to do so much more here! You can read more about our plans in our Three Year Strategic Plan.
For more information about supporting our work during the pandemic, please visit our COVID-19 Support Page.
Any other questions?
Please get in touch if you have any questions that we have not yet answered. Or for more information and advice on COVID-19 in the UK, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Do I need to wear a face covering?
In line with Government advice, we are asking that visitors wear a face covering if possible whilst in our café/entrance area. Once outside it is entirely up to you idf