We’re totally reeling from the incredible news that we’re the No 1 Small Visitor Attraction in England! In a ceremony today, at London’s swanky Hilton Wardorf, we were given the top award possible by VisitEngland in the 2017 Awards for Excellence: a very gorgeous GOLD! Comedian Sue Perkin presented us with the little beauty shown in the photos above.
A spokesperson for VisitEngland, the country’s official Tourist Board, commented: “Congratulations – winning the award allows you to claim justifiably to be the best in your category in England.”
Founder Don Walser, who attended the ceremony with his daughter Kelly Wickes, commented: “We are amazed and delighted! This award means so much to us. Six years ago, when we set up a primate rescue centre on the Isle of Wight, everyone thought we were crackers. Now we’re the best small attraction in the country. We’re a small charity but thanks to the support that we’ve had, we’ve been able to continually expand and evolve and care for growing numbers of creatures in crisis, from monkeys who’ve been smuggled through customs to meerkats who’ve been victims of the cruel pet trade.”
Don, who attended the ceremony wearing his lucky monkey tie, added: “Thank you to everyone who has made this possible – our dedicated team of staff and volunteers, and every single person who’s visited us or supported us in any other way. This award is for you all.”