Honouring a Visionary: Peter Sampson’s Legacy Statue Unveiled at Hertfordshire Zoo

Wed 3rd July

Commemorating Peter Sampson's Vision: 40 Years of Wildlife Conservation at Hertfordshire Zoo

Join us in honouring Peter Sampson, the founder of Hertfordshire Zoo and The Big Cat Sanctuary, with the unveiling of a bronze statue. Celebrating 40 years of dedication to wildlife preservation, this tribute highlights Peter's profound impact and ongoing legacy in animal conservation.

In a heartfelt ceremony, Hertfordshire Zoo unveiled a bronze statue to commemorate Peter Sampson, the visionary founder of Paradise Wildlife Park, now known as Hertfordshire Zoo, and our sister charity, The Big Cat Sanctuary. This statue marks the 40th anniversary of the zoo and celebrates Peter’s immense contributions to wildlife preservation and conservation.

A Tribute to a Legacy

Crafted by esteemed sculptors Steve and Ben Winterburn, the statue poignantly captures Peter Sampson with his favourite and beloved tiger, Rocky. Peter rescued Rocky as a cub from a shuttering circus, and Rocky the tiger was hand-reared by Peter, forming a profound bond that symbolised their shared journey in conservation. Throughout his life, Rocky became an emblem of resilience and hope for both wildlife charities.

Peter Sampson’s Vision

Reflecting on the lasting impact of Peter’s work, Steve Winterburn, a long-time colleague and friend, shared: “His vision was clear – to make a difference in the lives of animals and to inspire others to do the same. Today, as we stand before this statue, we are reminded of that enduring commitment which continues to guide us.”

Continuing the Legacy

As we honour this special anniversary, our family-run wildlife charities remain dedicated to upholding and expanding upon the incredible legacy Peter established. In line with his enduring commitment to animal welfare, we are preparing to rescue five lions from conflict areas in Ukraine, as part of our Big Cats in Crisis campaign. This effort underscores our ongoing dedication to wildlife conservation and rescue operations.

Celebrating 40 Years of Wildlife Preservation

The unveiling of Peter Sampson’s statue at Hertfordshire Zoo serves as a poignant reminder of his visionary contributions to wildlife preservation. Over the past 40 years, Peter’s work has inspired countless individuals and continues to guide the efforts of Hertfordshire Zoo and The Big Cat Sanctuary.



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