A museum in Forest Hill rushed animals indoors to shield them from flying rubble carried by Storm Eunice’s deadly winds.

The Horniman Museum’s animal enclosure was closed to visitors for the day as animals are kept out of galeforce winds. 

Horses and goats at Vauxhall City Farm are also staying in their stables to protect them from debris that might blow into their day paddock at Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens.

Meanwhile ducks at the farm have been moved into a special enclosure to shield them from high winds.

The city-centre farm, which looks after 80 animals, is currently closed to visitors. Staff are remaining onsite to watch over animals in case damage is caused by the 100mph winds which are expected to batter London throughout the day. 

Battersea Park Children’s Zoo has moved many of its animals indoors to protect them from the bad weather. It will remain shut for visitors all day, with staff on-hand to make sure animals are safe. 

The Horniman Museum in Forest Hill, which looks after alpacas, goats and sheep, said it was generally keeping animals indoors. Its goats were having a little fresh air outside, closely supervised by staff. The museum is closed to visitors.

A staff member at Vauxhall City Farm said: “The horses and goats and sheep will stay in their stables. They won’t go out in the paddock across the road because they are at risk of debris that might blow into the paddock.

“We’ve moved the ducks to a more secure enclosure. We have our animal staff on site who will be keeping an eye on any issues.

“Our birds are kept in a netted enclosure because there’s a bird flu outbreak, but if the wind gets any worse we will have to reassess.”

They added: “Yesterday evening, our farm team secured and checked all animal enclosures, and we put away any unsecured items that could become hazards in the wind. 

“We even put our fake plastic cow, Briony, on her side, in case a sudden gust of wind caused her to take off.” 

The last time strong winds forced the farm to close was February 2020, when Storm Ciara ripped the roof off its alpaca stable. 

Battersea Park Children’s Zoo announced its closure to the public for the day in a statement on Twitter.

In a post from February 17, it said: “Due to adverse weather and strong winds forecast with the approaching Storm Eunice, we have decided to close Battersea Park Children’s Zoo tomorrow, Friday 18th February.

“Our expert keepers will still be on site caring for our animals, with many of our residents kept indoors away from strong winds.”

A spokesperson for the Horniman Museum said: “They’re being kept inside their stables and hutches today. Although the goats Flymo and Gizmo are currently enjoying a little outside time under close supervision.

“We hope to reopen tomorrow, weather-dependent – visitors are advised to check the website before visiting.”

Vauxhall City Farm and Battersea Park Children’s Zoo are also expected to reopen to visitors on Saturday after strong winds have subsided.

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