UK Wolf Conservation Trust
Butlers Farm Beenham Reading Berkshire RG7 5NT
Once widespread throughout Britain, wolves were wiped out from these islands in the Middle Ages, but there's still one place where you can listen to their haunting howl – and indeed take them for a walk. The UK Wolf Conservation Trust, based in Beenham near Reading, was set up by animal lover Roger Palmer in 1995 as a non-profit organisation 'to enhance the conservation, scientific knowledge and public awareness of wolves'. It started with three of Palmer's own wolves, and has expanded through breeding (the initial set of cubs are thought to be the the first wolves born in Britain since the 1500s) and acquisition from safari parks and other centres. Today visitors come to see, photograph and walk with the Trust's twelve wolves – including the UK's only Arctic pack. Visits are for members only – but since membership starts at £45, it's perfectly viable to sign up for the day. For £100 per year, you can become a ‘Walking Member’, allowing you to go on a wolf walk, see the wolves foraging and stroke them (under supervision). For £45 you can become a 'Visiting Member', allowing you and two friends to go on a pre-arranged visit on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday and watch (but not contact) the wolves.
Other memberships include a junior membership for 6-12 year olds (£30) and Adopt a Wolf (£40).