John Victor Aspinall and Adoption



British casino and zoo owner

Aspinall was adopted by a British Indian Army colonel as a very young child and spent most of his childhood in English boarding schools. He was expelled from Cambridge University for faking illness before his final examinations in order to go to the horse races at Ascott.

He made and lost fortunes in gambling, owned four exclusive London casinos: the Clermont Club, Aspinall's Club, the Aspinall Curzon Club and Aspinall's; and had two private zoos in Kent, Port Lympne Zoo Park and Howlett's Zoo Park, which have seen a number of maulings and accidents to keepers and visitors, including five fatalities. He, together with the brothers Sir James and Teddy Goldsmith, founded the Ecological Foundation and its magazine, The Ecologist, in 1972.


d'Souza, Christa. "The King of Clubs," Sunday Times [London], 25 October 1992, p. 5/5 Aspinall, John. The Best of Friends. (London: Macmillan, 1976) Who's Who, 1998