British tourist in 'worst-ever' attack by Gibraltar ape

Brit holidaymaker needed 40 stitches after monkey attack

Updated: 
British tourist needed 40 stitches after Gibraltar ape attack

A British tourist needed 40 stitches after being attacked by one of Gibraltar's famous apes.

Stuart Gravenell, 53, was walking through the Upper Rock Nature Reserve with his son, Bradley, when he was attacked.

A pack of apes charged at them, and one male sunk his teeth into Stuart's forearm and shook its head, opening up two bloody wounds.

Stuart collapsed and was rushed to hospital, where nurses said it was the worst injury inflicted by a local ape that they'd ever seen.

Stuart, a retired IT worker, told the Gloucester Citizen: "You just wouldn't believe how traumatic it was. It was a very very upsetting experience.

"It was supposed to be a nice family holiday and it was totally ruined.

"I have no recollection of the actual incident - I think I must have blocked it out.

"But Bradley said it just ran up and stopped dead in its tracks and jumped on me - half on my back and half of my shoulder.

"He said it grabbed my arm - I've got claw marks - and it bit into me arm and just shook. It was so aggressive. It savagely bit my arm, tearing it open.

"It jumped off and was just sat on the wall looking at me. Blood was pouring and spurting everywhere - it was like a tap."

Stuart, from Hardwicke, in Gloucestershire, had driven from home to Casares del Sol in Spain for a three-week break with his wife Diane and his son.

The keen walkers took a day trip to nearby Gibraltar and paid 50p each to enter the Upper Rock Nature Reserve when the incident occurred on 24 September.

Albert Poggio, the UK-based representative for the colony, told the Mirror: "It is very very sad but what can one say?

"These monkeys are wild. We do give as much notice all over the place. It is very unfortunate.

"We are trying to keep the numbers down and we have just exported 30 to Scotland."


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