Search

Zookeeper killed in “freak accident” after tiger entered enclosure at Hamerton Zoo in Cambridgeshire

PUBLISHED: 20:15 29 May 2017 | UPDATED: 07:23 30 May 2017

A zookeeper has died at Hamerton Zoo, Cambridgeshire. Picture: Google

A zookeeper has died at Hamerton Zoo, Cambridgeshire. Picture: Google

Archant

A female zookeeper has been killed after a tiger entered the enclosure she was in.

Visitors were evacuated from Hamerton Zoo Park in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire, a little before midday on Monday.

Police were called to the attraction at 11.15am to reports of a serious incident, while a Magpas air ambulance was on the scene 20 minutes later.

Cambridgeshire Constabulary said on Facebook: “Officers attended a serious incident at Hamerton Zoo Park, Steeple Girding, at around 11.15am today.

“A tiger had entered an enclosure with a keeper. Sadly the female zookeeper died at the scene.

“At no time did the animal escape from the enclosure.

“The incident is not believed to be suspicious.”

A statement issued by Hamerton Zoo Park described the death as a “freak accident”

“We are sorry but our staff are too distressed to speak directly to the media, as one of our colleagues was killed at Hamerton Zoo Park this morning,” they said.

“This appears to have been a freak accident.

“A full investigation is currently underway and we hope that more details can be announced as soon as we are able.

“At no point during the incident did any animals escape their enclosures, and at no point was public safety affected in any way.

“All our thoughts and sympathies are with our colleagues friends and families at this dreadful time.

“The park will be closed from tomorrow 30th May, and we will give more information as soon as we can.”

Eyewitness Jeff Knott, from Cambridgeshire, said staff had been “a real credit” to the zoo during the evacuation.

The 32-year-old told the Press Association: “We had been in the zoo since about 10.30am and heard/seen nothing until asked to leave about 11.45am.

“Staff were very calm and professional. All visitors around us were leaving in a very calm manner - no running, shouting or anything similar.”

Antonia Brickell from Magpas air ambulance denied reports that visitors had been “running in terror”, adding: “The visitors were safely evicted from the zoo.

“No animals escaped the enclosure, no children were injured.”

She also confirmed that the incident was not terrorism-related.

An EEAST ambulance service paramedic crew and two rapid response vehicles also attended.

Other news

Yesterday, 21:28

Just one KFC restaurant in the whole of Norfolk remained open today as the company continues to face chicken shortages.

Yesterday, 13:05

Fun with pancakes and friends was at the heart of a church event to celebrate Lent.

Yesterday, 12:21

Three secondary schools and a further education college have successfully secured a grant aimed at supporting pupils and encouraging them to take up engineering courses.

Yesterday, 12:20

A charity music day has raised hundreds of pounds for a military charity to help support children who have lost a parent serving in the forces.

Most Read

Yesterday, 21:28

Just one KFC restaurant in the whole of Norfolk remained open today as the company continues to face chicken shortages.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:05

Fun with pancakes and friends was at the heart of a church event to celebrate Lent.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:21

Three secondary schools and a further education college have successfully secured a grant aimed at supporting pupils and encouraging them to take up engineering courses.

Read more
Easton and Otley College
Yesterday, 12:20

A charity music day has raised hundreds of pounds for a military charity to help support children who have lost a parent serving in the forces.

Read more
Paul Sandford
Yesterday, 16:04

Staff plotting to help themselves to stock from a bankrupt shop, struggling firms viewed as money-making opportunities and a memo telling staff to let some customers “hang themselves”.

Read more
Norman Lamb

Most Commented

Yesterday, 21:28

Just one KFC restaurant in the whole of Norfolk remained open today as the company continues to face chicken shortages.

Read more
Yesterday, 13:05

Fun with pancakes and friends was at the heart of a church event to celebrate Lent.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:21

Three secondary schools and a further education college have successfully secured a grant aimed at supporting pupils and encouraging them to take up engineering courses.

Read more
Easton and Otley College
Yesterday, 12:20

A charity music day has raised hundreds of pounds for a military charity to help support children who have lost a parent serving in the forces.

Read more
Paul Sandford
Yesterday, 16:04

Staff plotting to help themselves to stock from a bankrupt shop, struggling firms viewed as money-making opportunities and a memo telling staff to let some customers “hang themselves”.

Read more
Norman Lamb

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 6°C

min temp: 1°C

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Dereham Times e-edition today
E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter