Welcome to Sopwith, Banham Zoo’s new baby camel
- Credit: banham zoo
A famous RAF squadron is celebrated in the unusual naming of Banham Zoo's latest baby animal – and the grand-daughter of a former serviceman is the brains behind the choice.
Three-year-old Elsie Dyer, whose parents Billy and Marie are annual pass holders at Banham Zoo, is a regular visitor and her favourite animals are the Bactrian camels.
In order to encourage Banham-based Elsie's love of animals, the zoo offered her the chance to name the new camel – a privilege usually reserved for keepers.
Animal manager Mike Woolham said: 'It's obvious Elsie has a real soft spot for these wonderful animals.'
She was presented with a shortlist of six names and, with a little prompting from grandad Christopher 'Mitch' Mitchell who spent 37 years in the RAF, Elsie opted for 'Sopwith'.
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Nanny Elizabeth Mitchell, who lives at Walcott, explained: 'The Sopwith Camel was a First World War biplane and its name lives on in the RAF's 45 Squadron, which my husband was in, working with Tornados at bases like Honington and Marham.'
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