Keeper for a Day: One Person - *2022 is FULLY BOOKED*
Experiences bought now will be put on a wait list for 2023. We cannot currently take bookings for 2023.
Vouchers are valid for a year from purchase.
The day starts at 8.45am and ends at around 3pm. Experiences are held on twice a week and once per day only during our open season (April to the end of October, excluding all school holidays). We can only run one experience per day, so booking well in advance is highly recommended.
Working closely with experienced members of the Primate Welfare Team, Keeper for a Day participants will gain a behind-the-scenes insight into their roles and responsibilities at the sanctuary and become involved in important aspects of the monkeys’ lives. The kind of things you will get to do through-out the day include, but are not limited to; the cleaning of enclosures, picking wild leaves for the monkeys to eat, making enrichment and experiencing exclusive talks from our keepers to hear about the monkeys unique and inspiring stories and personalities! All of the activities throughout the day will directly benefit the monkeys, however, there is no direct, hands on, contact with any of the monkeys at any time and you will not be able to take close-up selfies with the monkeys, hold or touch them. This is because we are a working sanctuary for rescued primates. Many of the monkeys in our care have been rescued from traumatic lives as pets and are now being rehabilitated to behave like monkeys again, which means human contact must be kept to an absolute minimum. We do not interfere with the monkeys' lives beyond what is absolutely necessary for medical and husbandry purposes; they are encouraged to live as closely to how they would in the wild as possible. Our sanctuary is proudly accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS) – this means we fit the comprehensive and rigorous definition of a true sanctuary; providing humane and responsible care for animals. We have over 50 years of experience in primate welfare; during which time we have cared for more than 160 monkeys, rescuing 17 in the past five years alone. You are, however, of course more than welcome to take photos and videos to remember your day!
Due to the hands-on nature of this experience, participants of ‘Keeper for a Day’ must be prepared to become involved to the same extent as the keepers themselves, and as such, need to be physically fit and suffering from no severe health problems. You will need to be able to carry out some heavy lifting, carry out a cleaning routine and be comfortable climbing steep steps, so a reasonable level of fitness is necessary. For insurance purposes, the scheme is only available to those aged eighteen years and over. Unfortunately, we cannot accommodate pregnant people.
The day can be physically demanding. Cleaning out the monkeys typically involves climbing up and down ladders and climbing over and under ropes and beams. It can also be very hot as we clean in full PPE (overalls, boots, gloves, and a face mask) and the monkey huts are heated all year round. People who suffer from pre-existing back problems or find it uncomfortable working in the heat are advised that the experience may not be suitable for them.
PLEASE read the following information carefully PRIOR to booking an experience:
- Available twice per week only from April-October (excluding all school holidays). All dates are subject to availability. Days may be subject to change and are on a first come, first served basis.
- Experiences bought now will be put on a wait list for 2023. We cannot currently take bookings for 2023.
- Experiences are not available to anyone under 18 years of age.
- There will be no hands-on contact with any of the monkeys at any time.
- Your experience is valid for a year from purchase. No refunds or extensions will be given on expired vouchers.
- There is some heavy lifting, climbing and steep paths involved, so a reasonable level of physical fitness is necessary.
- Only one experience can be run per day and the dates fill up quickly, so it is advised that you book well in advance to avoid disappointment!
- All potential dates must be confirmed by our team in writing, email or by telephone before being considered booked in.
- Do not book holidays or commitments prior to your date being booked and confirmed by the team.
- All experiences are booked via email.
- It is recommended that you wear clothes and footwear suitable for working in an outdoor environment in all weather conditions.
- The wearing of face masks is mandatory on all experiences. If you are exempt, this experience may not be suitable or may need to be altered.
- We are a very small team whose priority is always the welfare of the monkeys in our care, and that does hinder our ability to offer more dates.
- Please be aware that on-site we handle nuts, seeds, grapes and various other allergens daily – it is likely to be part of the experience
Included in the Keeper for a Day experience is:
- A day’s one-to-one supervision and training by experienced members of the Primate Welfare Team
- A light, vegan lunch consisting of a pasty and a slice of cake (optional)
- A certificate of your day
- A gift to take home
- “Friends of Wild Futures” membership for one year
This unique opportunity to be a primate keeper for a day is £160 per person or £250 for two people.
For any further information then please contact: keeperfor[email protected]
Comments from previous Keeper for a Day participants:
"I've just completed the "Keeper for a Day" experience today. And what an experience, in the best, most life affirming sense of the word! A beautiful location and lucky enough to have had the best weather, with some of the most dedicated people guiding me through and providing a very friendly and informative day amongst the primates in their care (Kim, April and Luke to name only a few - apologies to everyone else, you're all absolute heroes). Want to buy someone a gift? This is highly recommended. And if you're stuck for a day out, this is definitely worth a visit. Thank you guys, I'll remember this amazing experience for a long time."
"We both had a thoroughly enjoyable day and loved all of it. It is a beautiful place and it shows everyone cares enormously about the welfare of each and every monkey. Thank you so much for giving us a day never to be forgotten. We shall definitely re-visit next year."
"Well what can I say - absolutely wonderful experience. This was bought as a gift for me from my parents for my 18th birthday some 18 months ago, but because of Covid we couldn't go. The experience was for 2 people so my Mum could enjoy this with me. The long awaited experience was well worth the wait! The itinery for the day was well thought out, and we cleaned the monkey's cage, helped feed them and were able to go behind the scenes to see how the sanctuary is run. The staff were so knowledgeable and helpful and are very passionate about their work. All in all a very memorable experience from start to finish."
"My family and friends jointly treated me to this fantastic experience for my 60th birthday. From arrival to departure we had a fantastic experience. The staff were both friendly and knowledgeable and were more than accommodating throughout the day. Every person that showed us around was both enthusiastic about their involvement with the monkeys and happy to show us what they do. The whole day was a fantastic experience which I would love to do again and recommend to everyone who loves monkeys."
"My daughter bought me the Keeper for the Day gift for my birthday. I can honestly say that it was a great gift. The day was made wonderful by the lovely staff. You could feel the real devotion they have for the primates in their care. Also how proud they are to be able to work with them. They also put themselves out to make sure I was enjoying the experience. Thank you all for the incredible day you all gave me."
Please Note: As a 'hands on' experience, you will be required to work alongside the primate welfare team in any weather conditions. The work does require physical exertion so a relatively good level of fitness is required. Please ask for advice if you have any medical condition or disability that you are concerned may affect your ability to enjoy the experience to the full. We will make every effort to adapt the experience to your needs. There is no direct contact with the monkeys at any point during the day. For insurance purposes, the scheme is only open to those aged 18 and over. Pregnant people are not able to participate in this experience.