The Start of Something Very Special For Tigers

Several years ago, the incredibly talented jewellery designer, Catherine Best, created a ‘one-of-a-kind’ piece – gold, diamonds, emeralds and other precious stones combined in sinuous, entwined tiger form to become the famous Shere Khan necklace.

Symbolic of hope for wild tigers, in 2014 the necklace was the centrepiece of Born Free’s 30th Anniversary celebrations. It stunned everyone who saw it.

Last night it was on display again to wow a new audience at the launch of a new relationship between The Born Free Foundation and Taj Hotels, one of the world’s pre-eminent luxury hotel, lodge and resort brands.

Our partnership has one objective – to raise awareness about the plight of the wild Bengal tiger and work for the protection of the species through Born Free’s Satpuda Tiger Landscape Project (STLP).

Guests at the event (held at St James’ Court, a Taj Hotel in central London) included, His Excellency The Indian High Commissioner, Mr Siddhartha Butalia (Director of Marketing at Taj), Danielle Bux, Nick Knowles, Gary Lineker, Jim Moir (Vic Reeves) and his wife Nancy, Gary Webster and Wendy Turner Webster, Mridula Tangirala (Taj Associate VP Safari Operations), Lily Travers, Professor Claudio Sillero, Rani Singh, and many more.

Born Free Founder, Virginia McKenna, read a beautiful excerpt from the new limited edition of The Jungle Book and I was honoured to MC the evening which included a host a range of on-going fund-raising opportunities.

Full details are detailed on our website here

Also on the page above, and as part of the wonderful partnership, are details of our collaboration with Taj partners, Greaves Travel, who are hosting a bespoke Born Free ‘India Tiger Safari’. This bespoke luxury holiday will include beautiful luxury lodges, opportunities to view incredible wildlife, cultural sites and our work in action, all accompanied by a Born Free expert.

A donation will be made to Born Free for every holiday booked, and this will go towards Born Free’s tiger conservation work in India.

The SLTP is a truly collaborative project between Born Free and ten Indian NGO partners working to secure the largest contiguous area of tiger habitat in India, including a number of official Tiger Reserves. Minimising the potential for conflict, generating sustainable community benefits and reducing human impact on lands connecting the Protected Areas, are all part of the Project’s Mission.  Its value to tiger conservation is becoming widely-recognised and membership applications from groups wishing to join the partnership include one from nearly 1,000 kilometres away!

I believe that there is a long-term future for wild tigers in India. My optimism is based on a combination of the clear political commitment, at both Federal and State level, to the future of the species and the habitat it relies on; the dedication of international, national and local NGOs; the tolerance of local people; and the special place the tiger – the symbol of India’s wildlife – holds in the hearts of hundreds of millions of India citizens for who a future without wild tigers would be unthinkable.

If last night is anything to go by, the powerful combination of Taj Hotels and Born Free provides yet another reason for optimism that wild tigers will still be around to inspire and enthral for many generations to come!

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One Response to “The Start of Something Very Special For Tigers”

  1. Andie Carey Says:

    Me& my husband went on a tiger safari in Rajistan, India in 1998. My first time abroad & an experience I’ll never forget. I’d not long got over breast cancer, I’ve loved tigers for years,so my husband took me on this holiday of a lifetime. We saw 5 tigers in Ranthambore National Park. A magical moment for everyone there.I hope tigers can survive in India so more people can share this magical experience as well.Thanks to organisations like yours hopefully we’ll win the battle !!!!