Bristol Zoo

Bear Wood Boardwalk

We supplied Bear Wood in Bristol with over 17,000 ln/m of Gripsure Classic for their immersive boardwalk. This elevates visitors above the forest floor, putting them right in the heart of the forest. It gives panoramic views of the woodland and the unique species that live there.

Bear Wood, set in 7.5 acres of ancient woodland, tells the story of British woodlands, taking visitors on a fascinating journey starting 10,000 years ago to the present day. The exhibition has re-introduced native species, which once roamed our woodlands. These include European brown bears, European grey wolves, Eurasian lynxes, and wolverines.

Gripsure took a brief from the zoo and developed a specification to achieve:

  • Longevity in a wet and damp woodland environment by providing boards treated to Sector Scheme 4 treatment classification (30 years)
  • Certified FSC timber, ensuring materials are from sustainable sources and blend in with the natural woodland
  • A low slip risk for the anticipated high volumes of visitors. This was achieved by using three non-slip inserts which have been tried and tested at other attractions
  • Pushchair- and wheelchair-friendly surfaces achieved through a smooth profile to avoid discomfort. This is also easy to maintain.
  • Non-slip decking boards cross-cut to the width of the boardwalk to minimise waste and speed up installation.

Gripsure's Classic deck boards were supplied across a number of scheduled deliveries to Elmtree Garden Contractors. This meant they could keep to their construction programme and limit the amount of storage space required on site.

"The great thing about using Gripsure boards, and Gripsure as a company, was that you can communicate with them and they delivered on time every time" - Director, Elm Tree Garden Contractors.

As well as the large and impressive boardwalk, Gripsure Graphics were also supplied where custom-made infographic boards created bespoke time-hop sections. The imitation of roots around 'Steve the Tree' help tells the story of the UK's woodlands and the species and habitats within them.

"It was all here on time, it looks really good and we were really pleased with the service that we got" - Exhibit Development Manager, Wild Place Project.