Zoo fined £70,000 for health and safety breaches

A zoo run by Colin MacDougall and his wife, TV personality Anna Ryder Richardson, has been handed a £70,000 fine for breaching health and safety regulations.

Manor House Wildlife Park in west Wales was prosecuted after three-year-old Gruff Davies-Hughes was injured on the premises in August 2010. He was hit by a tree bough that was blown down in strong winds, suffering head injuries so severe that he had to spend three days in intensive care fighting for his life. His mother, Emme Davies-Hughes, was also injured quite seriously.

At Swansea Crown Court, Mr MacDougall was heavily criticised for his attitude after the incident, as he refused to close the wildlife park and Pembrokeshire County Council had to step in and shut down the attraction to ensure the safety of the public. It also came to light that Mr MacDougall had ignored surveys informing him of potentially dangerous trees which needed to be cut down.

For breaching regulations and failing to act on the findings of a health and safety risk assessment, Manor House Wildlife Park and Mr MacDougall were fined a combined total of £110,000 in fines and court costs.