Virginia, Bill, Christian the lion, John and Ace outside the caravan in Surrey

Photo: © Virginia McKenna/

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Virginia, Bill, Christian, John and Ace Outside the Caravan in Surrey
"Christian was a very wonderfully natured animal; you used to be able to go into his enclosure and sit with him. He was not at all aggressive. Luckily, Ace and John took him from the department store when he was very small, and [he] was only treated with kindness, was only loved. He shared their life, and he never had any reason to be afraid.

"A lot of wild animals are dominated, so they behave in a certain way because they are afraid of being punished. Or, in the wild, they are hunted, and so they are afraid when the see humans. There are very many ways that you can think about animals and treat animals, and if people don't really have respect for the nature of the animal, I'm afraid that it is usually the animal that pays the price."
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