Love has no language; this is what we learn from ‘Christian – The lion’
In 1969 a young Australian, John Rendall and his friend Ace Bourke bought a small lion cub from Harrods pet department, which was then legal. They named the cub, Christian. He was kept in the basement of a furniture shop on the Kings Road in Chelsea, the heart of the swinging sixties. Loved by all, the affectionate cub ate in a local restaurant, played in a nearby graveyard, but was growing fast!!
A chance encounter with Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna led to a new life for Christian. He came to live in a huge enclosure and to sleep in a caravan at their Surrey home. Then in 1971 he was flown to Kenya, his ancestral home, and returned to the wild by lion-man George Adamson. Nine months later in 1972, John and Ace returned to Kora in Kenya. This clip is of their reunion at that time.
It was an emotional reunion: He ran towards us, threw himself onto us, knocked us over and hugged us, with his paws on our shoulders – John Rendall
Watch ‘Christian – The lion’; directed by Bill Travers, commentary by Virgina McKenna, founders of the Born Free Foundation.
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Image Credit: themedicalvet