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Old Birmingham/Dudley Zoo Photographs

pollypops

master brummie
....and the last two. I think I have some more photos taken in the 90's. I will have a look for them.
Polly :)
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
hi adrian..ive got one or two taken in the 50s but from memory they are more family pics..not sure how much of the zoo they show...if you would like me to turf them out and have a look just let me know..

lyn
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
I would like to see those as any information I can take from them would help
me alot as I have said every little bit of information no matter how small
will help me in alot of ways
many thanks
 

paula1964

master brummie
Hi

I am not sure if what I have will be any good yet but my dad took us to Dudley Zoo I think on the film it say's 1967 I am just about to have them transferred to DVD as it is the old type of film that you need a projector for it will take approx 3 weeks to be done so if I can get any good images from them I can let you know if you are still interested when I get them. I am due to take them at the end of the week.

Kind regards Paula
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
That would be absolutly brilliant I would love to see some images from around that time
many thanks for getting in touch
 

paula1964

master brummie
Hi Adrian,

No problem once I have them I will get in touch and let you know I am sure it dated 1967.

Kind regards Paula
 

Astonian

gone but not forgotten
HI ADRIAN ;
Many thanks for your reply in letting me know about the annimals i would imagine it was for the better of the two to be moved to another zoo of comfort where they did not have to work hardfor there keep, they was constanly on the go ,i remember a couple years after they introduced donkeys in side the gates for kids and the ele;s had gone
i passed there last week late on the evening and i wondered whether or not had they expanded there site
or even inproved the standarda round the zoo, would you know ?.
have a nice day everybody incidently may i take this opportunetity to say the resovoir as been completly demolished and long gone the one oppersite the aston resovoir and it was nice to see the aston villa pub
holbun hill surrounding by the union jack all around the pub on st georges day and still flying today
in a true astonian tradional style [ great ]
have a nice day every body best wishes Astonian ;;;;
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
Astonian - the zoo is starting to get to look alot better these days I visit about every 2 weeks
as I care for my mother and have one day off every 2 weeks,
The Old Ape House as just been refurbished at the back (where the public used to walk through)
and made into 2 pretty large indoor playing area's for the Orangutans they have.
The Chimpanzees have there own area now it's down by the old Minature Railway (no longer running)
The Elephant House is now home to the Birds of prey that do the displays in the courtyard.
The elephant paddock now homes a walk through for Red necked Wallaby's
There are plenty of things going on in the zoo to bring it up to a very high standard but it
will take a little time.
The thing that holds the zoo back unfortuantly are the Tecton Buildings they are badly damaged and
without a massive influx of cash I can't see them ever improving this is down to the Local Council
and English Heritage to sort out.
There are plans afoot to restart the chairlift and to have a car park between both the Zoo and the Black
Country Museum I think this will be a benefit to both attractions
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
if anyone would like a update on Dudley Zoo just let me know and I will post some photographs I have taken lately
and I will also update on new arrivals shortly
 

jennyann

Gone but not forgotten. R.I.P.
Staff member
I do have some photos taken at Dudley Zoo at least twenty years ago when I took my children for a visit. I will look them out and see what's what. My own memories of Dudley Zoo are from visits with the Sunday School, two different Schools really. Erdington Parish and George Road Baptist Church. We kids went in coaches and they were parked in the large Coach Park adjacent to the main gates. We were given the time that we had to go to the Tea Rooms for our tea and the rest of the time we were allowed to roam about. Before taking the chairlift we would visit the coin machine arcade not far from the main gates and spend out pocket money in the machines and trying to win a prize with the "Grabbing Crane " game.No Penny Waterfall machines in those days! When I took my kids to the Arcade some of the old machines were still there! One in particular was a game where skeletons came up out of graves. Very spooky but we loved it.
After going up on the chair lift we would make for the Castle itself and play games all around the place. We would then set off to have a look at the animals of which there were a lot to see.
About 4:00pm we would all meet up at the Tea Rooms for a sit down tea. As this would have been the early l950's the tea was
usually fish paste sandwiches, bread and butter, jelly and an iced fairy cake. You could have orange squash or tea to drink.
It was a great day out and we were nervous about finding the right coach in the large Coach Park at the end of the day.

I know that they used to have concerts in the Tea Rooms many years ago. A fellow I knew here in Vancouver years ago told me that his parents, who were opera singers, used to perform in the Tea Rooms at specially arranged concerts. Perhaps Dudley Library might have some records on this.

I have remembered that it was 1985 when I took my children to visit the Zoo and I have never forgotten all the species of owls
that they had in the walk down from the Castle keep. I also remember my Mother telling me many years ago about ancient sea
creature fossils being found under Castle Hill. Seems that area was covered by a tropical sea 400 million years ago. Now that's going back some long time.
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
I would be very interested in seeing your photographs
It sounds like you have many good memories of the zoo

Hope to hear from you shortly
 

Astoness

TRUE BRUMMIE MODERATOR
Staff member
hi adrian...not sure if these will be of any use to you or not...they are all family pics of mom dad me and my brother at the zoo but you can see some of it including the train...

all dated `1958/9

lyn
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
These are great as you can see how the zoo has changed by the back grounds
Many thanks for your help
any more information from anyone
as little as it may seem would be great as I've said before
every little helps
 

zzf00l

master brummie
It shows the Killer Whale they had there in the 70's. I don't remember any other Zoo having one of these.
Polly
I remember going to the Zoo with College chums one afternoon to see the whale... only to be told that he had in fact been taunted to death by yobs who broke into the zoo!! But yes the pool was too small for him and it probably wouldn't be allowed now.
 

1963ADRIAN

proper brummie kid
Cuddles was hastily rehoused at Dudley Zoo as the zoo that where looking after him closed
out of the blue and Dudley stepped in to house him in a hastily arranged pool.
They were going to move Cuddles to France but unfortunatly Cuddles died shortly before the arranged
date of transfer.
Cuddles died from an infection caused from a broken rib no one knows how this broken rib came about
but it was not through Yobs (as you put it) braking into the zoo.
The size of the pool was standard for the time which shows what we accepted at the time to be standard
I have evidence that the pool was quite deep and the length was a little small.
In todays zoos this would not be acceptable but in those days we the public just wanted to see a Killer Whale
and didn't really think about the conditions the animals were kept in.
I have great memories of seeing both Cuddles and the Bottlenosed Dolphins just for information these were
in the pool next door.
These 2 pools are now home to the patagonian seals they have 1 male and 2 females and as yet they have
not had any cubs. I hope this helps clear up one or two old tales about how Cuddles died
 
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