Cornwall LivingIssue #99
Saving our seals
Open once again with safety measures in place, we find out what lockdown was like for the Cornish Seal Sanctuary.
The past few months have, without doubt, been tough, not least for the team at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary. As a charity that relies on revenue from guests in order to fund its vital work, being closed for three months, as you might expect, was extremely worrying. Fortunately, the support the sanctuary has received from the public has been overwhelming, and through its Just Giving campaign, ‘Seal Appeal’, members of the public were able to donate funds, keeping the sanctuary and its team going and allowing them to continue providing their important work.
Of course, the Seal Sanctuary wasn’t the only charity affected by the recent lockdown. So it came as a huge surprise when local celebrity and ocean lover, Lucie Rose Donlan, used her impressive social media following to help spread awareness of the sanctuary’s cause, not only helping to raise awareness, but vital funds, too.
Lucie, who is a professional model and free surfer based in Newquay, is also recognisable from the UK hit reality TV show, Love Island. Her passion for the ocean and love for wildlife and animals really resonated with the sanctuary, and her support for the team’s work during their time of need was, quite frankly, invaluable.
“I am so honoured,” says Lucie, “to have been made an Ambassador for this much loved sanctuary that not only does amazing work, but is also a fun and exciting attraction full of educational facts and information. Myself and my family enjoyed a private tour around the sanctuary recently and we were very impressed with what we saw.”
Lucie continues: “I want to say a huge thank you to all the friendly and informative staff who made our day not only memorable but also educational. I’m so proud of attractions such as this in Cornwall, just knowing that people care deeply about the welfare and rehabilitation of these beautiful creatures. It’s so important to keep these sanctuaries fully operational; I’m passionate about being chosen as an Ambassador and hope to be able to work closely with them so that they can continue to work their magic for the rescued and injured seals.”
Thrilled to have welcomed Lucie to the family, the Cornish Seal Sanctuary team have since been given to go-ahead from the government to once again open their doors to the public and welcome guests back onto the 42-acre site. That said, they’re keen to ensure that everyone can visit and feel safe during their stay, which is why they’ve put in place a comprehensive set of safety measures. These include a full Covid-19 risk assessment, capacity restrictions to ensure adherence to social distancing, and signs reminding guests of the government’s social distancing guidelines, posted throughout the site. There is also an enhanced cleaning regime in place, hand sanitiser stations have been installed around the sanctuary, and protective equipment has been installed to keep staff and visitors safe. Add to this regular temperature checks and staff PPE, plus additional staff training, and the Cornish Seal Sanctuary is safely primed, ready to welcome us back!
Home to an array of rescued marine animals who require expert care, now that the sanctuary is once again open, why not pay a visit and say hello to the residents? You’ll hear the amazing rescue stories and learn about how the team rehabilitates and releases more than 70 seal pups each season, and as you wander around the sanctuary’s open spaces, you’ll be spellbound by the views across the beautiful Helford river.
If you and your family have made the post-lockdown resolution to spend more time in the great outdoors, we can’t think of anywhere better to start than at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary.
As part of the team’s new Covid-19 safety measures, visits must now be booked in advance, so be sure to visit the Cornish Seal Sanctuary website and secure your tickets!
THE CORNISH SEAL SANCTUARY