A MOLD youngster is set to take on a huge charity challenge to save the zoo he loved since his very first visit.

Six-year-old Jimmy Roose, from Mold, was devastated to learn that Chester Zoo was facing closure because of Government coronavirus legislation changes.

Determined to do something about it, the Ysgol Bryn Coch pupil has challenged himself to run a mile a day throughout June to save the zoo he has loved ever since his first visit as a baby.

The Leader:

Six-year-old Jimmy Roose, pictured with brother Rory, will take on a charity challenge to help save Chester Zoo

Mum Claire told the Leader: “We watched a news segment about someone raising money for Alzheimer’s and we talked to Jimmy about it and why charity’s need more help now because of what is going on right now.

“That really resonated with him as his great grandad suffered with dementia before he passed away so he wanted to do a little cake sale for our street to help out which we were happy to do with him.”

Claire goes on to say his focus changed when learning about the situation at Chester Zoo.

The Leader has reported that Chester Zoo, the UK’s biggest zoo, has been left fighting to remain a part of childhood memories for generations to come. It was said that the popular tourist attraction in Cheshire was heading towards debt more than £24m by the end of 2020 that a spokesman said would “financially cripple” the zoo.

The zoo closed its doors to the public in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic on but needs all the help it can get as it stands on the brink of closure.

The Leader:

Claire continued: “We had a talk about what the news meant, and he was really quite sad about it. He loves the zoo and has been going there ever since he was tiny. He loves animals and learning about them so he asked if he could do his bake sale for Chester Zoo.”

Claire agreed with him, but Jimmy then wanted to go bigger to help.

She said: “Jimmy asked us if he could raise more money if he did something else. We had a little chat about some ideas and came up with the running as he loves to run. He asked his dad if they could go for a run every day and see if people would sponsor them which we agreed.”

Claire and her husband planned a few routes he could take lasting about a mile each – and over the whole month would be the equivalent of a full marathon which Jimmy was excited about.

A fundraising page was set up for the challenge with a target of £500 and that was smashed in a matter of hours. It has since increased to £1,000 but has been surpassed again.

Claire said: “Jimmy had a rather ambitious target of £1 million at first but its been so lovely to see all the donations come in and he’s loved hearing the supportive messages from everyone.

“When we hit the first target, he was so giddy and was beaming with pride.”

To support Jimmy in his mission to help do his bit in saving Chester Zoo, go to www.justgiving.com/fundraising/claire-roose2.