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Andy Cowell raised £5,610.5 from 480 supporters.

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Closed 24/10/2017

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£5,610raised of £250,000 target by 480 supporters

    Weʼve raised £5,610 to Help Fund Our Zoo

    St Mary Hoo, United Kingdom
    Funded on Tuesday, 24th October 2017

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    Story

    Well what a five weeks we've had here at the Fenn Bell, it’s been manic and I have heard it all. Your car parks not big enough, the pub is too small, not enough seats and tables, why can you not have outside seating areas with roofs, when will the zoo be finished, you need more animals and my favourite, your tomato sauce needs to be better quality. The abuse we have taken by stopping people coming into the car park when we are full is just not on, when all we are doing is protecting peoples safety .It does make you wonder why we do it and to be honest I do wonder what people expect. Over the last 3 years we have battled hard to get to this point and anyone who knows us knows what we have been through and what we have given up to do it. On top of all that goes on during the day to day running of this place we have been around looking at lots of different zoos, small and large. It has been quite an eye opener, how much they charge to get in and the cost of food and drink in there. Not only do we offer FREE entry but I believe our food and drink to be very well priced. When we started planning this adventure, I and I alone wanted to have a free admission. It was a very important part of what I wanted to do here. firstly because this place for us has never been about making money and secondly I have sat there myself and complained about the cost of going out as a dad with a family like I am sure you have all done. The cost of running the zoo only, works out to about £250 a day. A yearly cost of roughly £91000 this includes vet bills, food and wages for two staff. It does not include the costs of building enclosures and not my salary as I do not take one. I can tell you right now for a fact, for value for money there is NOT any where else in the country that offers what we do yet still we have people moaning. The income we have comes from 2 sources. 1 all the profit we make on our food and drink and the other is a donation box. This has about £200 a week in it. Last week we counted over a 5 day period 4000 visitors that works out about 5p for every person coming. To say its disappointing is, well, you think about it. I would also like you to know that we do not take any income from the train. Although the train runs on our land it is run separate. Paul and his team of volunteers use their money to invest in the building and maintenance of the railway and new rolling stock. I am sure you can all see how much, work and effort is going into the stations, carriages and events. they are a credit too us and I believe they add great value to us as a place to come for a day out. As I said money was not what I wanted this place to be about and that is true. I hoped that we would get local business on board to help. This has not happened. Banks, waste of space. Lottery forget it. So I ask you if we cant get the money to finish the project how can I give you what you want and make this the place what I believe it could become. Its really down to you, not anyone else, I am talking to you the person reading this. We need to raise over £250000 to complete this project. Where will the money go. Land, we need it, without it we can not do anything about parking, more security, enclosures; we are desperate to finish the enclosures we have started. A large part will go into our conservation project this will include classrooms and toilets for schools, colleges and universities to do education and research, work on British conservation projects such as hedgehogs, red squirrels, pine martins and bees also including fencing, covering for the outside seating areas and more tables and chairs. Infrastructure, We need a bigger animal kitchen, freezers and fridges, we need to build a quarantine area for animals coming into the zoo. Mains services, electric and water, we cannot carry on with 1 hose pipe running the whole site. These are just a few of the things we need to make this place work. The pub next year will get a big extension this will be built and paid by Shepherd Neame. It will include new toilets, food area and bar. This will make a big difference to being able to cope with the demands placed on our very small pub. We thank Shepherd Neame for their support in this. So how can we raise the money to finish the zoo? We could start charging an entrance fee, put the price of food and drink up but this goes against everything I believe in. I have considered selling my wife… I know she is second hand but she runs well, the body works not bad for her age but she does smoke and is a bit noisy, so I keep her. The only other way is to do crowed funding, I need people to give, not a lot. If you gave us £2.50 each we need 100000 people in a country of 65 million to do the same to reach our target and get this place finished. I need you to give and keep sharing it to all your friends and get them to give and share it with there friends. This way I am sure we can find the people to help. Its a price of a cup of coffee. What are we offering you. I’ve got nothing to give only a chance to be part of something good in a world where good is hard to find and a promise that every penny that you give will go to making this the best place for our animals and for you to visit. I have always believed in people and there ability to come together and help to do good that is why we started this project. Moving forward we hope next year to apply for charity status and the land we own already with the land we hope to buy will be put into a trust so that education and conservation will always be here at the Fenn Bell long after we have gone. It may sound soppy but I think we can make a difference, we won’t go into the work we do behind the scenes with sick children and money we give to charities that is private. It’s in your hands I cannot do this on my own. I have many faults, ask the wife but I am firm in my beliefs that what we are doing here is good and you can be part of that all you need to do is click and donate what you can and share it. If we can not raise the money we will have no choice but to look at charging. I will never give up believing in what we are doing here. I listen to many people talk a good talk and do nothing. Well I wont be like that I’ve put my heart and soul, all I own and so has my family to try and build this zoo. Thousands of people talk about it and come, now its down to you. Can you be part of something that is not driven by profit and greed and help us to create something special.

    Regards,

    Andy

    Updates

    3

    • Andy Cowell10 months ago
      Andy Cowell

      Andy Cowell

      10 months ago

      thanks to all the people who have so far donated to our fund. the money we have raised so far has paid for us to finish our new macaw aviary. at 4.8 meters hi our birds will love climbimg about in the trees. every penny we get goes in these enclosures . all the parrots we have hear come in as unwanted pets so to give them a home like this is amazing and you have made it happen by donating. i cant thank you enough for your support. if we could

      Update from the Page owner

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    • Andy Cowell10 months ago
      Andy Cowell

      Andy Cowell

      10 months ago

      hi guys, first off all thank you very much for your support. the money we have raised so far will be spent on our new macaw, cockatoo and african grey enclosure. with out your help this would have not happened. it is massive and iam so proud of it they will be so happy in there new home and you have made this happen. i will post some pictures of it next week.we have also done some small videos that we will upload next week . regards andy

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    • Andy Cowell1 year ago
      Andy Cowell

      Andy Cowell

      1 year ago

      thanks guys for your help. it means the world to us if we could raise all we needed we could do so much. is it possible, i believe it can be done with your support. regards Andy

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    1 year ago

    Andy Cowell started crowdfunding

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    Page last updated on: 10/12/2017 3:37 PM

    Supporters

    480

    • Julie Taylor

      Julie Taylor

      Oct 12, 2017

      Love your zoo, I hope it all works out well for you. Keep the good work up.👍

      £30.00

    • Danielle

      Danielle

      Oct 11, 2017

      I grew up in the area and have since moved away and started a family. It's lovely to see something worthwhile and attractive being done and for a good cause. We love it! You're doing a great job!

      £10.00

    • Sophia Did Santos

      Sophia Did Santos

      Oct 11, 2017

      £5.00

    • Kim Tindal

      Kim Tindal

      Oct 11, 2017

      What a brilliant thing you are doing, come on people let's help by donating what you can, wish we had this when I was small , good work xx

      £10.00

    • Sean Ashton

      Sean Ashton

      Oct 10, 2017

      Best Wishes From all the team at Senseco Systems Ltd

      £100.00

    • Anonymous

      Anonymous

      Oct 4, 2017

      £20.00

    • Denize Halfpenny

      Denize Halfpenny

      Oct 4, 2017

      You're doing great - don't give up!

      £20.00

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    About Crowdfunding
    About the fundraiser
    Andy Cowell

    Andy Cowell

    St Mary Hoo, United Kingdom

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