AN ASTONISHING zoo's worth of beautifully-crafted exotic animals took over an Oxford neighbourhood for one weekend.

Children and parents in New Hinksey created the colourful creatures out of cardboard, paper and anything else they could find.

Among the stars of the show were a huge, luminous green crocodile with terrifying gaping jaws, a long-necked giraffe, a rainbow rhinoceros and a cute chameleon with a fluorescent pink pipe cleaner tongue.

Oxford Mail:

A fearsome-looking snake, a very refined fox and a fabulous flamingo were among the other crafty creations.

The safari was all created in order to help raise funds for the local school – New Hinksey CofE Primary.

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With the coronavirus lockdown stopping all of its usual activities, the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) at the school were struggling to think of ways to raise the money they raise every year to help pay for fun activities and supplies.

Ben Armstrong, whose daughter Amelia goes to the school, said: "In these strange times we were struggling with the usual fundraising efforts of our PTA.

"We were not able to raise money in our usual way and had to cancel our summer fête due to the coronavirus.

"So, we organised something a little different."

The mums and dads came up with the idea of creating a 'safari walk' around the streets of New Hinksey.

Oxford Mail:

All families in the area were encouraged to build an animal sculpture or do an animal painting and put it outside of their house, then Mr Armstrong created a map of all the locations.

Brave explorers were then challenged to seek out all the animals in the wilds of New Hinksey.

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The PTA then encouraged anyone who went on the suburban safari to make a donation to their online fundraising page.

The residents set their crafty creatures loose over the weekend of June 27 and 28, and the trail proved to be a huge success.

Dozens of people took part over the two days, and the walk raised a whopping £2,500.

This is the same amount made by last year's school fete, making the exotic replacement a winner.

Oxford Mail:

The PTA explained that £5 could provide a class with extra craft materials, £20 could buy additional reference books for a class and £100 could buy tools and plants for the school allotment.

So, when the children finally get to go back to school in September, they can look forward to a good year ahead with some proper educational supplies and just a few fun extras.

Mr Armstrong said: "We have been overwhelmed by the response.

"It was a delight to see so many residents come together to create such an amazing community event.

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"Thank you to all who took part and to those who donated. We really do live in a fantastic place."

To donate to the PTA go to