Visitor Information

MRC Centre for Macaques Visiting Information

The Centre for Macaques (CFM) has been supplying rhesus macaques to UK academic institutions for biomedical research since 2003.

We house up to 300 macaques, in groups of 5-20 animals, where each group is housed in a large, socially enriched indoor pen. Our aim is to improve primate welfare through enrichment, positive reinforcement training and welfare-related research.

Entry precautions for CFM:

CFM is a closed colony of rhesus macaques. Whilst our primates are regularly health screened, there is a risk of zoonotic infection between people and our animals. This is why it is crucial that we safeguard our animals against known and unknown transmissible diseases carried by staff and visitors. Please read the following restrictions carefully.

Prior to entering CFM, you will be asked to confirm that you are not suffering from, or have been in contact with patients suffering from:

  • Measles in the last 21 days
  • Mumps in the last 21 days
  • Chicken pox / Shingles in the last 21 days
  • Cold sores or herpes-related disease in the last
    10 days from the healed lesion
  • Coronavirus (SARS-CoVID-2) in the last 14 days
  • Diarrhoea or vomiting in the last 2 days

If you have recovered from any of these conditions recently, a 7-day grace period with no symptoms will be necessary before you can enter CFM:

  • Influenza
  • A persistent cough (lasting longer than 3 weeks)
    not due to asthma or allergies
  • Ringworm or ringworm-like symptoms (itchy dry open sores)

Please contact CFM staff if you have been diagnosed with any of the following infections (a risk assessment can then be performed prior to your visit):

  • Campylobacter
  • Salmonella
  • Yersinia
  • Tuberculosis
  • Shigella
  • Any form of Hepatitis

Please note that you cannot enter CFM if you have visited:

  • A Porton Down primate facility that day (unless you shower)
  • A UK academic primate facility within 2 days
  • Any other primate unit within 7 days
  • Zoos or other animal facilities within 5 days

Procedures for entering the CFM:

To enter into the animal facility, there is a physical barrier, which involves wearing protective shoe covers until reaching the changing rooms. There are separate male and female changing areas, where all outer clothing and accessories down to underwear must be removed, and stored in available lockers. Personal protective equipment (PPE) involving scrubs, headwear, socks, footwear, nitrile gloves and a face mask will be provided for you to wear inside the Centre. If applicable, beard guards will also be supplied. Whilst we have a range of sizes in stock, please let us know your scrubs and shoe sizes in advance of your visit, so that we can ensure these are ready for you on the day. After perusing the hand-washing station within the changing rooms, you will then be shown around the Centre.

Upon exiting the facility, all PPE and scrubs are placed in accessible bins for laundry or disposal. After scrubbing your arms up to your elbows, you can then change back into your own clothes before visiting other areas of the Centre. Shower facilities and toiletries are available should you wish to shower upon exiting the facility.

All visitors without exception must follow this protocol to enter the facility. A member of CFM staff will be available for the duration of your visit to answer any queries, and provide any assistance you may require. Please note that should you suffer from any of the above conditions, refuse to wear relevant PPE or fail to adhere to Centre practices, you will not be permitted access to the Centre.

The first public, non-human primate biobank in the UK