I started this blog back in October 2013 and using a couple of photos I happened to have of monkey trees I’d photographed put up the first couple of posts – with Ness Botanic Gardens as the first monkey, a monkey I fondly remembered seeing as a child, and a monkey in Grange-over-Sands spotted the previous summer, one in Birmingham Botanic Gardens where I’d been for a day out, and the one at Allerton Towers. They were just photos I already had in my library. And then I started actively hunting monkeys. I don’t even know where the phrase came from – but I expect it was from Ronnie, although I’ve long admired Victorian plant hunters for their tenacity and their bravery in seeking out new territories to find plant acquisitions.
So, when I jokingly said to Ronnie that I wanted to do ‘a monkey puzzle map of the world’, I didn’t really think it would happen, and imagined this blog would be my own sightings, probably mostly around Liverpool and the North West, and random other places I happened to travel to.
I was wrong.
I now have over 200 monkeys in the UK, which have been individually catalogued using the postcode they are in.
So this is the monkey puzzle map of the world, for the UK. There are just three international monkeys, but I am sure that more will follow.
The UK monkeys are now listed alphabetically with links to the post where you can find each one on ‘The catalogue’ page.
And this isn’t something I could have done on my own. So I’d like to thank fellow monkey hunter and enthusiast Jeff Jones in Hereford. Agent Jeff has fearlessly and consistently come up with monkey after monkey. You can see his Hereford progress here, but his hunting is by no means limited to HR, and you can see more of ‘his’ monkeys searching with the ‘Agent Jeff’ tag.
Our newest agent is Agent Shane in Shropshire, doing excellent work there.
I have some other budding hunters who’ve contributed too, so thanks to Ceri for Sefton Park monkey, and from Twitter – Jane (@JaneSoup) for Jesmond and Flaybrick Hill cemetery, Thomas Forth (@thomasforth) for York – currently the only YO monkey, Claire (@crpritt) for Widnes potential, and John S (@JohnShaw) who nearly found some in Liverpool.
I’m also helped to find monkeys by my partner Ronnie Hughes. He is often my driver and sometimes spots monkeys as well. He is eschewing ‘Agent status’ as that would imply joining in – which, of course, if you know Ronnie, he won’t!
And a belated thanks to David Sparks (@dsparks83) for the first Widnes monkey – David very kindly sent me this when we had a fruitless monkey hunting day in Widnes. So this is our first Widnes monkey – which shares the Warrington postcode, this is WA4:
So, I know there are others on their way to me from both known and secret agents, you might even be one of them. So keep them coming and we’ll form a complete ‘Mappa Monkey’ of Britain, and maybe the world!