The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

‘Roar’some safety measures at Leeds Children’s Hospital!

10 February 2021


Leeds Children’s Hospital has teamed up with Yorkshire Wildlife Park with an innovative project to remind hospital visitors of important social-distancing measures by introducing life-size wild animal cut-outs into the Children’s Hospital. This exciting project makes use of real photos of some of the Wildlife Park’s most iconic residents. Designed to capture the spirit of the Children’s Hospital, the project is going down a storm with patients and staff! 


Patients and their families could be forgiven for thinking that wild animals are roaming the corridors at Leeds Children’s Hospital! Nine 2m signs have been created using different animals from the wildlife park, each highlighting a key Covid-19 safety message.

 Animals from Yorkshire Wildlife Park that have made it into the hospital include:

  • An Amur tiger warning hospital visitors to keep 2m apart
  • A polar bear reminding everyone to wash their hands regularly
  • A rhinoceros asking staff and visitors to keep to the left when moving around the hospital
  • A male lion reminding patients and their families not to be early for appointments


 Play Leader Sharon Panesar has taken on the role of resident ‘explorer’ at Leeds Children’s Hospital and has been all over the Children’s Hospital to find and photograph the animals. She said:

 ‘The animals really make you stop and pay attention which is great and it’s wonderful to tell our patients that these are all real animals that really live in Yorkshire!’     

 As part of this exciting new partnership Yorkshire Wildlife Park are donating resources to the Children’s Hospital’s award winning Play Team including wildlife activities and some free passes for the park, once the park is able to open to the public again. In collaboration with Yorkshire Wildlife Park, staff at Leeds Children’s Hospital will be running additional engagement activities and competitions for patients, aiming to bring some of the ‘wild’ inside for during their hospital stay.   


Celia McKenzie, Head of Nursing at Leeds Children’s Hospital said:

 ‘The animals have created a real stir around the Children’s Hospital. They’ve made me jump more than once! We all know how important it is to keep reminding each other of these simple safety messages such as hand-washing and keeping left in corridors but they soon become part of normal life so it is important that we look at different ways of delivering the message and engaging staff, children and families.  We can all make a huge difference by sticking to these simple practices and it really helps our staff to keep everyone safe’  


 Suzanne Abrahams, General Manager at Leeds Children’s Hospital said:

 'We want everyone to feel safe when they come into hospital and we always put the patients at the centre of everything we do. We pride ourselves on constant innovation at Leeds Children’s Hospital and our partnership with Yorkshire Wildlife Park to promote Covid-safe practice within the hospital is a great example.’      

Debbie Porter - Animal Manager at Yorkshire Wildlife Park said:

‘We are delighted to help put images of some of our most iconic animals to such good use. It almost brings the walk through experience of Yorkshire Wildlife Park to the hospital.’

Yorkshire Wildlife Park is currently closed to visitors but staff look forward to reopening the doors to the public as soon as they can. 

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