Head Keeper Matt has a particular interest in British wildlife, studying a HND/Foundation Degree in Animal Science at Plumpton College. “I came to the BWC in the Summer of 2004 and refused to leave! I love being outside observing the animals and their behaviour, and I enjoy educating visitors about our own, often overlooked, wildlife.” Matt’s special interest is red squirrels and pine martens. He’s developed a particular bond with our pine marten Bonnie.
Izzy has a life-long interest in animals and volunteered with both the Swan Sanctuary and Animal Line. She studied ND Animal Management at Plumpton College. “I’ve always wanted to work at the BWC. I enjoy the outdoors and being part of a friendly team. It’s fantastic getting close to animals you rarely see in the wild”. Particular favourites are the red squirrels, hares and otters, she has successfully managed to rear and release leverets (baby hares) in the past.
Tom joined the keeping team in October of 2011, having studied Countryside Management at Plumpton College before going on to achieve a degree in Ecology and Biogeography at Brighton University. "Working here I have learn't so much about, and got close to, animals rarely seen in the wild. As John Muir said "any glimpse into the life of an animal quickens our own and makes it so much the larger and better in every way."" During his studies he did a lot of volunteer work towards habitat conservation, and has experience in small mammal handling and surveying techniques. All skills we hope to utilise during his time with us.
Meg arrived at the BWC early in 2014. Over her previous years she had been studying Animal Management at Pumpton college, as well as working for them during her college holidays. After a brief spell at a pet store, Meg realised that it wasn't for her, and she wanted to get her hands more on the side of wildlife and the conservation of animals. "I enjoy taking the school children around, and inspiring them to become enthusiastic about British animals. I particularly enjoy working with the Scottish wildcats, why?.. becasue they are badass!"
Tom joined the BWC keeping team in February of 2014. Tom studied Animal Management at Plumpton college, and worked their during his college holidays before moving on to work in a pet shop. His drive and ambition has always been calling for him to work with wildlife though, and so he joined our team to help develop his skills and learn more skills to help with the conservation of wildlife. "I enjoy sharing my enthusiasm for British wildlife with the public, especially during the keeper talks and talking with our many visitors. I particularly enjoy working with the red squirrels, red foxes and red deer... but then I have always had a thing for red heads!"
Richard joined our BWC keeping team for a third tenure in the Spring of 2016. Having been travelling on and off, he realised he was getting on a bit and needed to settle down. This with the call of British Wildlife led him back to the Centre. "I was so excited to get the opportunity to work again at the BWC. I love British wildlife, and missed all the animals at the Centre. But most of all I missed the Head Keeper Matt. He is so inspiring, such a great leader and thoroughly handsome too, no homo.... well, maybe a little."
Clare started at the Centre in the summer of 2017. Having just completed a degree in animal behaviour and welfare, and with some experience volunteering for Drusillas zoo and working in a pet shop, Clare was looking to advance her skills and learn more about working with wildlife and conservation. "It was an honour to get a call from the Matt Binstead... I mean who would pass up the chance to work for him and the BWC! I can't wait to get stuck in to educating the public, and making Matt proud."