Two giraffes, an elephant and zebra have appeared on a shop roof to the delight of children, but not of the local council.

Reigate and Banstead Council has told new South African food store St Marcus, in Brighton Road, Lower Kingswood, that it needs to apply for planning permission or remove the near-life-sized model animals.

Kelvin Hinton, development quality manager at the council, said: "The sitting of the animals on the roof at the property was drawn to our attention.

"We have advised the owners that due to their scale they will require planning permission.

"If a planning application is received we will decide on any action required once the application is considered and determined.

"If no application is made we would expect them to be removed without delay."

St Marcus opened in Lower Kingswood a few months ago and is billed as a "one-stop shop for everything from South Africa".

As well as South African cured meat, called biltong, the store sells exotic meats including ostrich, crocodile and antelope.

Owner Emory St Marcus described the public and shoppers’ reaction to the animals as "excellent", adding: "They love it, especially the children."

Resident Judy Parfitt said the appearance of the animals a few weeks ago had caused quite a stir in the village.

Ms Parfitt said: "Some are a bit horrified, some are amazed, some are intrigued. Others think it looks quite amusing."

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When told about the council’s advice, she said: "I should think that’s quite a good idea. You could imagine if it fell then it could be quite a to-do. They look quite perched."

There is a St Marcus food and wine shop in Roehampton and there used to be a store in Redhill.

Its website said the crocodile steaks were currently on sale and cost between just £19.25 and £38.50.

The ostrich steaks costs £9.80, Kudu antelope steaks costs £13.75 and Springbok antelope-gazelle steak costs £9.80.

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A manager in front of meat in the store


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