Our animal-mad Virgin Balloon Flights team made a couple of new furry friends this autumn when we officially opened Telford’s brand-new ring-tailed lemurs enclosure.

Keen to do our bit, we were approached by Exotic Zoo to sponsor its new lemur enclosure earlier this year and jumped at the chance.

The two young mammals – a boy and a girl - arrived at the zoo in the autumn and have already settled well into their new home.

After a ribbon cutting ceremony in front of a crowd of afternoon visitors, our team actually had the chance to go inside and meet the ring-tailed lemurs up close.

Exotic Zoo is a not-for-profit education centre and zoo founded by Scott Adams.

He is better known to many as television’s animal man through his regular appearances on CBBC’s Blue Peter programme.


“We had worked with the Exotic Zoo team before on our Face Your Fears challenge," said Matt.

"So we know first-hand what an amazing job they do caring for and rescuing all kinds of exotic animals, from snakes to meerkats and scorpions to armadillos."

“So when they asked us if we’d be up for sponsoring their new lemur enclosure, it was an immediate yes.

“After the opening, Scott took us inside the enclosure to meet the lemurs and feed them a few treats, which was awesome.”

Native to Madagascar, lemurs are the world’s most endangered mammal, and our founder, Richard Branson is well known for his conservation work on Necker Island to save them.

Ring-Tailed Lemurs In Telford

Scott first set up Exotic Zoo as an educational venture and community interest with the support of The Prince’s Trust back in 2012.

Initially an educational centre only, this summer he finally realised a lifelong dream and moved to bigger, outdoor premises and opened to the public for the very first time.

The arrival of the ring-tailed lemurs has been one of the highlights of the project.

“We want to say a big thank you to Virgin Balloon Flights,” said Scott.

“We are all really excited to have such a big and exciting company on board that has sponsored our exciting new arrivals.”

Exotic Zoo is not the only good cause supported by Virgin Balloon Flights this year, with the rest of our fundraising efforts in 2017 going to The Outward Bound Trust.

As another successful flying season comes to a close and we head into the festive season, we look back on a truly fantastic 2017.