Jeremy Keeling is one of the world's leading experts in primatology.
From a young age he found solace looking after these intelligent creatures and found a trust and understanding which had been elusive with his human friends.
As a child, he endured a highly dysfunctional relationship with his abusive mother. Her cruelty drove him out of the family home and into a caravan in the garden.
As he grew up in the English Pennines he increasingly channelled all his love and compassion into rescuing primates. One of these animals was an orang-utan called Amy, a creature which had also been rejected by her mother.
Amy became utterly attached to Jeremy and clung to him wherever he went and when Jeremy had a near-fatal accident it was Amy who was there to save his life.
Today Amy is re-integrated with other orang-utans at Monkey World in Dorset, UK, and has her own family.
Jeremy talked to Matthew Bannister about how his childhood shaped his attitudes to these creatures and toward his fellow humans.