Zoo licences

To run a zoo in the City of Westminster, you need a licence which, if granted, will be subject to specific conditions to ensure the proper conduct of the zoo.

You can read more about zoo licences at GOV.UK.

1. How to apply

At least two months before making an application, applicants must contact us in writing or by email to give notice of their intention. Please include the correct fee and identify:

  • the zoo's location
  • what kind of animals you’re going to keep and how many
  • how you’ll house and care for the animals
  • staff numbers and what they’ll be doing
  • expected visitor and vehicle numbers
  • zoo entrance and exit points
  • how you’ll meet the conservation conditions

At the same time, applicants must publish notice of their intention in one local newspaper and one national newspaper, and exhibit a copy of that notice. The notice must identify the zoo's location and state that the application notice to the licensing authority is available for inspection at City Hall, 64 Victoria Street, London SW1E 6QP.

To renew your licence, you need to apply 6 months before the expiry date of your existing licence

Regulation summary

Read the regulation summary relating to this licence

2. What happens next

Tacit consent

It is in the public interest that we must process applications before licences can be granted. If you have not heard from us within a reasonable period, please contact us. You can do this online if you applied through the UK Welcomes service.

3. Redress information

Failed application redress

Please contact us in the first instance. If the applicant is refused a licence, they may appeal to the City of Westminster Magistrates' Court, 70 Horseferry Road, London SW1P 2AX within 28 days from the date on which the applicant receives written notification of the refusal.

Licence holder redress

Please contact us in the first instance. A licence holder may appeal to the City of Westminster Magistrates' Court, 70 Horseferry Road, London SW1P 2AX against:

  • conditions attached to a licence or variations or cancellations of conditions
  • the refusal to approve the transfer of a licence
  • a zoo closure direction
  • enforcement steps relating to any unmet condition

The appeal must be brought within 28 days from the date on which the licence holder receives written notification of our decision.

Consumer complaint

We advise you first contact the trader, preferably by letter with proof of delivery. If that hasn't worked and you are in the UK, Citizens Advice consumer service will advise you. From outside the UK, contact the UK European Consumer Centre.

Any person who wishes to appeal against a decision to close a zoo may apply to the City of Westminster Magistrates' Court, 70 Horseferry Road, London SW1P 2AX within 28 days of the notice of our decision.

View the complaints procedure or make a complaint relating to the service you have received

Trade associations


Last updated: 21 February 2017
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