As part of the DarwIN Shrewsbury Festival this month, Shrewsbury Business Improvement District (BID) have created Shrewsbury’s very own Wildlife Reserve, transforming Wyle Cop into ‘Wild Cop’!

Six life-sized fiberglass animals including a bear, a gorilla, a lion, a zebra, a hippo and a baby elephant, have been placed onto the closed section of the Wyle Cop road, providing plenty of opportunities for photos, and endless fun for children and adults alike.

A vacant shop front has also been transformed into a rainforest, providing entertainment for children which ties in with the free activity booklets that can be picked up from shops along Wyle Cop.

Seb Slater, Executive Director of Shrewsbury BID said: “A part road closure presented an opportunity to do something fun and high impact over the half term break that wouldn’t normally be possible. We hope it will attract more people to the town and to visit the UK’s longest row of uninterrupted independent businesses on Wyle Cop, as well as enjoy one of the many other events being run by our partners as part of the DarwIN Shrewsbury Festival.”

Hannah Schwarzer, Marketing Manager at Tanners Wines commented: “Just wow! We love this project on the Cop. We were starting to get concerned over the reduced footfall we’ve been experiencing in our shop due to the road works. We’ve been running campaigns to try to mitigate their effects, but there’s only so much we can do, so we were thrilled when we heard about the ‘Wild Cop’ installation, and how well it has been executed. The animals look terrific and are proving a genuine draw. I can’t wait to bring my children to see them and I’m likely to do a little shopping on the Cop at the same time – I’m sure lots of other families will do the same.”

Stacey Hill, Owner of Oberon said: “It’s such a brilliant idea, and it is attracting so many people to the area already. All of the businesses are getting involved and excited about the idea, and it is really making a difference on Wyle Cop. We will be sure to create a wild display of our own to tie in with the theme!”

The ‘Wild Cop’ event will officially start on Friday 9th February and will run until Friday 23rd February.

For more information about this or one of the other 21 events taking place in Shrewsbury over the next two weeks as part of the DarwIN Shrewsbury festival go to

If uploading a photo to social media, make sure to #wildcop and tag @originalshrewsbury