THIS WEEK marks the 75th anniversary of the opening of Glasgow Zoo.

Established in 1947, at its peak it attracted around 140,000 visitors a year and was home to more than 600 animals, from African lions and a polar bear called Winston, to elephants and snakes. It closed its gates for the final time in August 2003 amidst a storm of controversy around debt and animal treatment.

Some of the zoo’s more unusual animals included white-throated Capuchin monkeys, scarlet macaws, a Madagascan Tree Boa and an African spurred tortoise, and it also housed a large farmland display with sheep, goats, geese, doves, large black pigs, ponies, and guinea pigs.

For many Glaswegians, the zoo - originally called Calderpark Zoo - was a popular day out. To celebrate its good times, we have taken a stroll back through our archives to find some of the funniest, strangest and most magical moments in its history.

1 Simba the lion cub was held aloft, Lion King-style, for these delighted young visitors to see back in 1962. Hand-reared by head keeper Joe and his wife Margaret in the family home, alongside their six-month-old daughter, he later moved down south (only to return years later to vanquish his uncle and avenge his father’s death. Or are we getting that mixed up with something else?)

Glasgow Times: Tiger Tim with tiger cubs at Glasgow Zoo

2 Tiger Tim, legendary Glasgow DJ, was often pictured with cuddly toy tigers, photos of tigers, tiger cartoons, tiger statues – well, you get the drift. In the early 1980s, he finally got to meet the real thing.

Glasgow Times: Minnie the macaw makes herself known on the Glasgow Zoo Walk

3 Two-year-old Zoe Robson from Ochiltree had a surprise passenger when she took part in a Glasgow Zoo sponsored walk in 2000. Minnie the macaw made her presence known by landing on Zoe’s pram, much to the consternation of the toddler, and the delight of her fellow participants in the Toddle for Barnardo’s.

Glasgow Times: Tarantula and owner at the Glasgow Zoo protest

4 Not everyone was happy about the closure of the zoo in 2003 – volunteer Gila Allen and Rosy the tarantula were at the locked gates to voice their concerns as plans to house the animals elsewhere were announced.

Glasgow Times: Fox cubs

5 Basil the five-week-old fox cob made his appearance at Calderpark Zoo on May 26, 1970, much to the delight of these young members of the Trice family from Uddingston (Mark, five, Barry, two, Michelle, three, and Julie, four).

Glasgow Times: Snakes get up close and personal with some young visitors

6 Not entirely sure these kids are over the moon about meeting Jackson the Indian python on a visit during 1982. Keeper Brian Glen is on hand to make sure nothing goes wrong. Bosses at the zoo had been so delighted with improvements made that year they reduced their prices to 1947 rates, meaning these young people got in for two pence each. (Normally, it would have cost 80p).

READ MORE: The Glasgow factory which made Spitfire engines in WW2 - and survived Luftwaffe bombing

Glasgow Times: Freda the elephant arrives at Glasgow Zoo, 1948

7 Freda the elephant, pictured here in 1948, was one of the zoo’s most popular residents but in 1948 she caused a huge stushie by escaping from her enclosure and releasing a camel at the same time.

What are your favourite memories of Glasgow Zoo? Get in touch with Times Past to share your stories and photos.