There are ‘big plans’ in store at Chester Zoo as it continues to attract thousands of visitors and millions of pounds to our region.
Zoo bosses have announced it boosted the North West economy by almost £50m in 2015.
£47.7 million was added (Gross Value Added or GVA) to the wider regional economy by the zoo last year in 2015, a report commission by the attraction has claimed.
More than 1.5m visitors came to Chester Zoo last year, making it the most visited paid-for attraction outside London.
Its annual economic impact could rise to £65m by 2020.
Chester Zoo managing director Jamie Christon said: “We are proud members of our local and regional community, so it’s a privilege to be able to play our part by having such a dramatic impact on the economy.
“We have big plans in store to enable us to continue to provide a world class visitor attraction in the years ahead.
“It is hugely encouraging to see that this could help the wider economy.”
The zoo’s Islands project, which cost almost £40m, has now been open for almost 18 months.
It employs more than 800 people during peak summer months.
Channel 4 series The Secret Life of the Zoo delves behind the scenes and is on its second series.
Also a conservation charity, the multi award-winning zoo now delivers about 80 schemes in 30 countries worldwide to protect endangered species from extinction in the UK and abroad.
Mr Christon said: “We are ever appreciative of those visitors who flock through the gates and support our conservation work.
“Our mission is to protect endangered species here in the UK and all around the world.
“It is magnificent news these visits are proven to dramatically boost the wider economy at the same time.”
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