When I think of Valentine’s Day, young love instantly springs to mind – well that and perhaps storks bearing special gifts. But young love turns to… older love.

Take Roger and Sheila Lewis, married in 1970, who used to run a kitchenware business together in Teignmouth and now volunteer together at Paignton Zoo in the Animal Crackers soft toy tombola fundraising activity. They have not always volunteered together - Roger is in his fifth year, Sheila has been doing her bit for under 6 months.

What do they love about volunteering at Paignton Zoo? “Meeting, greeting and talking with people.” And how do they get on volunteering together? “We get on well, but it’s nice to have our separate days when we have our own different volunteer roles, too!” So, does the togetherness at the Zoo help their togetherness at home? “We have a chance to speak about the deep and meaningful things at home, as well as catch up with all the chit-chat from the day.”

Roger and Sheila are one of at least ten couples who volunteer at Paignton Zoo – some couples volunteer together whilst some prefer to volunteer in a different area, maybe even on different days and doing their own thing!

Living and volunteering with your nearest and dearest - could you do it? Would it help keep the love alive? The Whitley Wildlife Conservation Trust is the charity that runs Paignton Zoo, Living Coasts in Torquay and Newquay Zoo in Cornwall, as well as several nature reserves in Devon. For more information on volunteering at Paignton Zoo please click here.

Paul Gallagher, Guest Experience Manager, Paignton Zoo

Quotes Loads to see and do, for a full day out. Quotes