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Monkey World News

Joy as ape hospital is approved

Daily Echo

TV CELEBRITY Rolf Harris has led the congratulations following the approval of Monkey World's new animal hospital.

The rescue centre won the backing of planning chiefs for the hospital at its site near Wool, which is needed to meet international zoo regulations.

Rolf, currently filming in France, said: "This means that sick monkeys and apes will get the care and medical attention that they deserve.

"Monkey World is an amazing place, a sanctuary for abused and mistreated apes all over the world.

"Owners Jim and Alison Cronin have dedicated their lives to saving these animals from a life of misery and to providing a happy and safe environment for them to live out their days.

"An on-site hospital will play a big part in helping them to achieve their aim."

Several councillors complained about "hype" and abuse they'd received from members of the public after the council requested more information about the planning application.

Purbeck district council chief executive Paul Croft said he'd received hundreds of letters from members of the public who wrongly believed the council had been objecting to the planning application.

He said: "It's almost like a campaign of disinformation and it's unhelpful to the planning process."

Cllr Malcolm Shakesby said: "It was quite a simple request for Monkey World to provide a large-scale plan of the site and what is going to happen to the existing animal hospital so I really do not understand what the problem is."

Cllr Julie Wheeldon said: "I have been subject to all sorts of abuse - telephone calls and people stopping me in the street telling me we are against Monkey World.

"We have done our utmost to help Monkey World, because of the job they do. We try our level best to be as fair as we can."

She said that shops "from here to Halifax" had got up petitions and added that all the hype had been unneccessary.

Speaking after the meeting, Mr Cronin said: "Councillors' noses should not be put out of joint.

"They should listen to the public and the public has said we should all be working together for the rescued animals of Monkey World.This community wants to work together and this is the message that councillors should be taking on board."

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