50 Years Young

50 years

The Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens, near Burford in Oxfordshire, is celebrating their 50th anniversary in 2020. The Park opened on Good Friday 27th March 1970. It cost 5 shillings (25p) for adults and 2 shillings (10p) for children and they welcomed 17,000 visitors in their first weekend. The Park was the brainchild of one man, John Heyworth, who wanted to rescue the decaying Manor House he grew up in. With the help of gardeners and keepers, he turned a bramble-strewn wilderness into a beautiful zoological collection. Over the past five decades, millions of visitors have enjoyed the beauty of nature at the Park. John’s son Reggie now runs the Park and continues his father’s work with over 260 different animal species situated in 120 acres of picturesque parkland.


  • Voted 4th best Zoo in the UK by TripAdvisor in their Traveller’s Choice Awards in 2015.
  • Awarded ‘The Heart Best Visitor Experience’ in the Oxfordshire Business Awards in 2019.
  • Voted ‘Best Day Out with dogs’, two years running in the Be Dog Friendly Awards by the Kennel Club.
  • Awarded a ‘Hall of Fame’ award by TripAdvisor in 2018 and 2019 for 5 consecutive years of winning a Certificate of Excellence.

Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens, Burford, Oxfordshire, OX18 4JP.

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