In 2016, the streets of Ipswich were taken over by sculptures of giant pigs and the charity behind Pigs Gone Wild is ready to announce that another art trail will be coming to the town soon.
St Elizabeth Hospice will be celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2019 and, to aid celebrations, will be bringing the art trail back to the town that summer.
Mark Millar, Chief Executive of St Elizabeth Hospice, said: “It’s incredibly exciting to be able to shout about the next trail. The Pigs Gone Wild trail was so well received by everyone in Ipswich. It raised a huge amount for the hospice and did great things for the town. We just had to jump at the chance to do another one.
“We’re already planning lots of exciting activity to mark this very special occasion and we therefore think it’s fitting to bring the popular art trail back to Ipswich to coincide with our 30th year and really bring the party to the town.”
Last summer’s trail lasted for ten weeks and was enjoyed by 250,000 people and brought with it a £1million boost to the local economy. Suffolk County Council sponsored two of the pigs and Cllr Christopher Hudson, cabinet member for Ipswich at Suffolk County Council, said: “The Pigs Gone Wild trail last summer was a wonderful success which Suffolk County Council was proud to be part of. Not only was it good for the local economy it also helped to raise the profile of our county town and did a wonderful job encouraging people to be active. I am therefore naturally delighted that St Elizabeth Hospice has decided to bring another art trail to Ipswich in 2019. I am sure it will be another huge success.”
Echoing the thoughts of Suffolk County Council, The Mayor of Ipswich, Cllr Roger Fern, said: “The Pigs Gone Wild campaign was a huge success which promoted and supported the excellent work of the hospice. It also provided a splendid boost to the local economy and promoted the town. I was delighted at the number of people, especially families, who took part in the trail. I look forward to the next project, which will, I am sure, be even more successful. It is something that the whole town can support.”
Commenting on the new trail, Norman Lloyd, Campaigns Manager at St Elizabeth Hospice, said: “Last time round, we found that the community really engaged with the pigs and took them in to their own hearts. They came into the town centre more to see their favourites and complete the trail, local businesses were boosted by the extra footfall, and we, as a hospice, got to share our story with many more people who might not know about the work we do at our site in Foxhall Road and out in the local community.
“We’ve already had people approaching us saying they’d like to be involved if we did it again, not only to help raise money for us but also to get more involved in the local community we all serve. It’s not often we can all get together and celebrate our local area and the way we can all group together to look after each other but this next art trail is going to do just that.
“I don’t think I’m too premature in saying it’s going to be huge!”
So what sculptures will take over the town in 2019? At this stage, that is still unknown but, if you look at the other art trails that have appeared around the country, it could be just about anything. There have been owls in Birmingham, dolphins in Aberdeen, barons in Lincoln and books in London. Internationally, there have been lions in Cape Town and rhinos in Sydney; the latter even had a visit from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge when they toured Australia in 2014.
Keep your eyes peeled for an announcement later this year revealing what form the sculpture trail will take in 2019.
If you or your business would like to support the next art trail or you’d like to volunteer to help the team bring the next sculpture trail to the town, contact St Elizabeth Hospice on 01473 707043 or email firstname.lastname@example.org