Founded in the early 1930’s Chester Zoo has grown to become one of the largest charity zoos in the UK. Spread across some 110 acres of land and home to over 500 different species of animal, the zoo is now internationally renowned for its innovative enclosure designs, conservation strategies and successful breeding projects.
Few environments present more challenging and diverse site service requirements than a zoo, and Chester Zoo, which prides itself on the display, breeding and conservation of some of the most exciting species of wild animals anywhere in the UK, requires major ongoing upkeep in terms of site services and maintenance.
Having originally won the contract in the 1980’s, Kimpton have been retained as the zoo’s sole site maintenance provider. Throughout that time they have retained the planned preventative maintenance (PPM) contract for the entire space heating, air handling and air conditioning equipment installations site wide, including the Visitors Centre, all animal enclosures and domestic staff residences.
Given the range of environmental conditions required across the site it’s little wonder that there are over 100 separate systems needed, including oil, gas and LPG fired boilers, warm air and water-based heating and cooling systems.
Regular maintenance visits by Kimpton engineers are augmented by its responsive call-out support service in the event of emergency H&V problems or repairs. With the zoo open to visitors all year round this can be a vital resource particularly in the peak climatic periods, i.e. summer and winter.
As well as maintenance provision, Kimpton is one of a number of suppliers involved in the small works design and installation of new systems as new animal exhibits and their enclosures are introduced. This has seen involvement in some of the zoo’s most popular recent attractions including the Elephant and Giraffe enclosures, the Capuchin monkey house and the Secret World of the Okapai exhibit.
In 2003 Kimpton were involved in the Tsavo Black Rhino Experience, purpose built accommodation to recreate the natural surroundings in which to breed and keep rare Black rhinos. More recently, they worked on a thermostatically-controlled hot air system in the ‘Islands in Danger’ enclosure, home to several rare island species most notably Komodo Dragons.