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20-Apr-2014
Runnymede Borough Council header
 Welcome
Zoo licences

Licence summary
To run a zoo in the Borough of Runnymede, you need a licence from Runnymede Borough Council.

The licence may be subject to fees, and conditions to ensure the proper conduct of the zoo.

Eligibility criteria

At least two months before making an application for a licence, the applicant must give notice in writing (including by electronic means) to Runnymede Council of their intention to make the application. The notice must identify:

  • the zoo's location
  • the types of animals and approximate number of each group kept for exhibition on the premises and the arrangements for their accommodation, maintenance and wellbeing
  • the approximate numbers and categories of staff to be employed in the zoo
  • the approximate number of visitors and motor vehicles for which accommodation is to be provided
  • the approximate number and position of access to be provided to the premises
  • how required conservation measures will be implemented at the zoo

At least two months before making the application, the applicant must also publish notice of that intention in one local newspaper and one national newspaper and exhibit a copy of that notice. The notice must identify the location of the zoo and state that the application notice to the council is available to be inspected at the council offices.

Regulation summary

A summary of the regulation relating to this licence

Application evaluation process

When considering an application the Council shall take into account any representations made by or on behalf of:

  • the applicant
  • the chief officer of Police
  • in the relevant area
  • the appropriate authority - this is either the enforcing authority or relevant authority in whose area the zoo will be situated
  • the governing body of any national institution concerned with the operation of zoos
  • where part of the zoo is not situated in the area of the local authority with power to grant the licence, a planning authority for the relevant area (other than a county planning authority) or, if the part is situated in Wales, the local planning authority for the area in which it is situated
  • any person alleging that the zoo would affect the health or safety of people living in the neighbourhood
  • anyone stating that the zoo would affect the health or safety of anyone living near it
  • any other person whose representations might show grounds on which the authority has a power or duty to refuse to grant a licence

Before granting or refusing to grant the licence, Runnymede Council will consider any inspector's reports based on their inspection of the zoo, consult the applicant about any conditions they propose should be attached to the licence and make arrangements for an inspection to be carried out. At least 28 days notice of the inspection shall be provided by the Council.

Runnymede Council will not grant the licence if they feel that the zoo would adversely affect the health or safety of people living near it, or seriously affect the preservation of law and order or if they are not satisfied that appropriate conservation measures would be satisfactorily implemented.

An application may also be refused if:

  • the Council is not satisfied that accommodation, staffing or management standards are suitable for the proper care and wellbeing of the animals or for the proper conduct of the zoo
  • the applicant, or if the applicant is an incorporated company, the company or any of the company's directors, managers, secretaries or other similar staff, or a keeper in the zoo, has been convicted of any offence involving the ill-treatment of animals

Applications to renew a licence will be considered no later than six months before the expiry of the existing licence, unless a shorter time period is allowed by the Council.

The Secretary of State, after consulting Runnymede  Council, may direct them to attach one or more conditions to a licence.

The Council may advise the Secretary of State that, because of the small number of animals kept in the zoo or the small number of the kinds of animal kept there, a direction should be made that a licence is not required.

Will tacit consent apply?

No. It is in the public interest that the Council must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from the council within a reasonable period, please contact it. You can do this online if you applied through the UK Welcomes service or use the contact details below.

Apply online

Send notification of your intention to operate a zoo

Apply for a licence to operate a zoo

Tell us about a change to your existing zoo licence

Contact us

To find out more about zoo licensing, within the Borough of Runnymede, please contact:

Commercial Team, Runnymede Borough Council, Technical Services Department, Runnymede Civic Centre, Station Road, Addlestone, Surrey, KT15 2AH,

Tel: 01932 425734 Fax: 01932 838384 Email: environmental.protection@runnymede.gov.uk