MEASURES to prevent baboons escaping and close slippery walkways are set to be imposed on a Dalton tourist attraction today.

Barrow Borough Council's licensing regulatory committee is being recommended to issue direction orders against South Lakes Safari Zoo at a meeting due to health and safety concerns.

The authority has identified three conditions to the Dalton zoo's licence which it states are not being met.

A muck pile in the African enclosure, which houses rhinos, giraffes and baboons, could pose a route for the monkeys to climb fencing and escape, a report to the council has found.

The zoo was told to move the pile away from the boundary by December 31, however the attraction states it cannot do so until the completion of a new rhino facility which has been delayed by several months.

"Moving the muck heap away from the moat and enclosure fence will reduce the escape risk and is deemed to be an easy task," the report reads.

The direction order, if imposed, would give the attraction a deadline of 14 days to carry out the work.

A letter to the council from the zoo in response reads: "At this time it is absolutely necessary for the muck store to remain within the boundary of the rhino field albeit a safe distance from the boundary to prevent escape of baboons.

"Any suggestion that the pile was to be in the middle of the field is simply unsafe and not good practice. It would create very dangerous wet patches in the ground for rhinos and giraffes to slip on and break limbs and in the long term ruin the field for grass production."

A direction order is also recommended to close timber walkways and platforms to the public until a survey on their structural integrity is completed.

The zoo has put down chicken wire on various platforms but the report states some sections are "rotten" and in a "deteriorating" condition.

The third recommended item for a direction order is for staff to come up with a written protocol with Cumbria police to deal with escaped animals, with a compliance date for March 30 2016. 

The report to the council states: "The zoo has, to date, not been able to satisfy Cumbria Constabulary that the zoo has suitable firearms and staff trained in their use."

The meeting is due to be held at Barrow Town Hall at 2pm.