On the 16th January, Hannah our Zoo/Zoo education manager attended a reception hosted by BIAZA (British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums) at The Speaker’s House in Parliament. Hannah attended this event as part of her chair role for the BIAZA Native Species Working Group.
This year BIAZA launched The British Wildlife Restoration competition. The competition was launched to emphasise the role of good zoos and aquariums in protecting and restoring our wild isles from hedgehogs to hedgerows. BIAZA zoos and aquariums don’t just protect global species in their field conservation work, but also fund, educate and enact conservation at the heart of Britain, where nature depletion is leading to catastrophic species decline.
The parliamentary reception’s aim was to bring together MPs, Lords, and those representing Zoos, Aquariums and conservation organisations to celebrate the conservationists protecting our native wildlife. During the reception MPs voted on their favourite native species project from the competition and the winners were announced by The Speaker on the night, with ZSL winning the award for their Wild Oyster Project
Sarah Champion MP (Chair of APPG for Zoos & Aquariums and co-sponsor of event) and Anthony Mangnall MP (co-sponsor of event) chaired the event and introduced attendees to the speakers, Sir Lindsay Hoyle (Speaker of the House of Commons), Rebecca Pow (Minister for Nature at DEFRA),Steve Reed (Shadow Secretary of State for the Environment) and Dr Jo Judge (CEO, BIAZA), who all spoke to highlight the importance of the work zoos and aquariums do for native species to their colleagues in parliament.
Hannah said, ” It was an honour to be able to represent Reaseheath College and BIAZA at this event. The reception was a fantastic opportunity to highlight and discuss the vital conservation work British and Irish zoos do for native species with those that work within the government, as well as being able to speak to representatives from other zoos and aquariums across the country and hear about the amazing conservation work they do.”