SINGING star Susan Boyle has visited a Scots zoo devastated by fire last month and vowed to back the campaign to rebuild it.
The Britain’s Got Talent star visited Five Sisters Zoo in Polbeth, West Lothian, near her Blackburn home, on Friday and left a generous donation.
SuBo also looked in on some of the zoo’s surviving animals, and was said to be particularly impressed with the lemurs.
A fund to support the family-run zoo now stands at more than £42,500, and its owners say they are overwhelmed by the support they are receiving.
The fire completely gutted the zoo’s tropical house and all the animals of 48 different species inside died and others were caught as the smoke and flames spread.
Lesley Coupar of the zoo’s marketing department, said: “She just popped in very briefly, I think she’s recording a re album in Glasgow but she took time out her shedule to visit us.
“She hadn’t been to the zoo before but she had a quick wander around. and she promised to come back in the summer.
“She’s an animal lover – she certainly liked the lemurs. We know she has cats but she didn’t have time to see our wildcats.”
SuBo left a “generous” donation after last Friday’s visit, Ms Coupar said.
Zoo owners Brian and Shirley Curran, who opened the not-for-profit zoo in 2005, are determined to replace and improve on the enclosures they lost.
The couple were woken at around 4am on 14 April to find the tropical house ablaze, and the flames began to spread to other enclosures.
All but two of the zoo’s meerkats died in the fire, and one of the zoo’s otters also died.
Shirley said: “It’s hard to believe it’s been two weeks since the fire.
“So muchhas happened then and we’ve been inundated with offers of help and support.
“I think we were both in a daze at the start and struggled to come to terms with the enormity of what had happened to us.
“Emotionally it was hard for us al as well.
“Obviously all the staff were deeply affected by what happened.
“There is a more positive outlook for the future now. People are still donating to the fire fund and things with the insurance company are looking more positive as well but we still don’t know when there will be a settlement.
“We are looking at costs for new replacement buildings and hopefully in the next couple of weeks we will be able to show people what we intend to do.”
Brian said two dwarf crocodiles, a female otter and two meerkats who survived the blaze would soon be well enough to go on public display again.
He said: “We are hoping to get them back out in the next week or so. The quicker the better as it will be good to get them out their small cages and into the sunshine again.
“We’re also trying to search for a new mate for the otter. They are sociable animals and like company.”
The zoo is now re-open to the public with reduced admission prices.