COSTWOLD Wildlife Park is involved in a garden at last week’s RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show that highlights the destruction of Africa’s elephant population as a result of brutal ivory poaching.
It has worked with Tusk, a conservation charity set up to combat poaching in Africa, to create a garden named Not For Sale, which is made up of a ring of 200 tusk arches, made from silicone, symbolising the scale of the slaughter of African elephants killed by poachers.
Sounds of the African savannah will play around the tusks while arid grasses, plants and acacia trees will help create a real sense of Africa.
At the end of the arched walk, the garden opens into an African savannah, where the ‘bones’ of an elephant lie in the dust, a powerful reminder of the destruction brought about by the illegal ivory trade.
Reggie Heyworth, managing director of Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens in Burford, said: “We hope that this striking project, championed by Tusk, can play a part in raising awareness of the poaching crisis in Africa.
“This generation of world leaders needs to decide now if these wild animals and wild places are to be saved, or lost forever.”
Prince William has been a patron of Tusk since 2005
Charlie Mayhew, the charity’s chief executive, said: “Tusk is very excited by this unusual collaboration and delighted that Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens has generously made it possible for the garden to go ahead.
“I am sure it will captivate the public’s imagination whilst also delivering a powerful message about the continuing plight of the African elephant.”
Mark Whyte, from Ferguson and Whyte Garden Design, added: “We designed the Not For Sale conceptual garden with strong feelings towards the ban on Ivory trade.
“The garden is a shocking truth that cannot be ignored and we hope it will make a difference to a currently awful situation.
“We are thrilled to working with Tusk and Cotswold Wildlife Park and Gardens on the project as they are so closely linked with this issue.”
RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show runs until Sunday.