Seychelles garden to feature in London park


16-July-2013

Minister Payet with representatives of the Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens and of the National Botanical Gardens


The Ministry of Environment and Energy, through the National Botanical Gardens Foundation (NBGF), has started negotiations with the Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens to set up a Seychelles garden there.

Negotiations intensified with the working visit of the Curator of the park, Jamie Craig.

During a meeting held yesterday with the Minister for Environment and Energy, Professor Rolph Payet, Mr Craig expressed the desire to have an endemic garden comprising of plants found in Seychelles at the park, where Seychelles fauna already exists.

Darwin, a giant land tortoise originally from the Seychelles Botanical Gardens, is a resident of the London park since April last year.

Discussions also included the possibility of training for staff of the NBGF in the field of plant interpretation, an area where the skills are lacking locally but is crucial for both the Botanical Gardens and the National Biodiversity Centre.

Plant interpretation is the detailed description of a plant, its origin, family, uses, how it flowers, among other details. 

Other assistance which may be derived from this collaboration will include developing and implementing a marketing strategy for the Botanical  Gardens and National Biodiversity Centre.
Minister Payet said it is important that the world knows and gets to appreciate the unique biodiversity of Seychelles.

“The Seychelles garden in the Cotswold Wildlife Park will give those who have not yet visited Seychelles a taste of our islands, thus joining the Ministry of Tourism and Culture’s efforts to bring in more visitors to enjoy Seychelles natural beauty,” Prof. Payet said.

Minister Payet added that through the garden, visitors will learn and know more about our endemics and appreciate why Seychelles is striving to remain a leader in conservation issues.

Cotswold Wildlife Park is located in Burford, Oxfordshire in a backdrop of rolling hills. Spread over 160 acres of enticing parkland, attractions include sculpted gardens, a listed Victorian Manor House and a variety of menagerie of birds, mammals, reptiles and invertebrates. Cotswold Wildlife Park was opened to the public in 1970. Annually it receives around 300,000 visitors.

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