Safari animals get into the Christmas spirit at Glasgow children’s hospital  

Patients from Glasgow’s Royal Hospital for Children were treated to a visit from a few festive friends as part of The BIG Stampede celebrations.

The giant safari sculptures returned to the hospital just six months after the launch of The BIG Stampede, a large scale art trail, organised by Hamilton Business Improvement District (Hamilton BID) in partnership with Wild in Art, which will see a herd of safari animals invade Hamilton in summer 2017 to raise funds for Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity.

Visitors to the hospital were joined by a giant gorilla and rhino and a baby hippo along with Heart Drivetime presenters Lynne and Paul who had dressed especially for the festive occasion. The station is the latest organisation to show its support for The BIG Stampede, having just signed up as the official radio partner for the initiative.

Commenting on the visit, Kirsten Sinclair, Director of Fundraising at Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “The hospital is full of festive excitement as we approach Christmas, and the sight of a herd of safari animals wearing tinsel certainly turned a lot of heads! Christmas can be a difficult time for our young patients, so fun visits like this are a great way to bring festive cheer to the children. We are so grateful to be a part of The BIG Stampede and are really looking forward to seeing all of the animals once they’re painted.”

Heart Scotland’s, Paul Harper, said: “Lynne and I were very excited to be asked to take part in The BIG Stampede. We’re proud to support the celebrations which will help raise awareness and valuable funds for the incredible work of Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity.’’

Gareth Walker, BID Manager at Hamilton BID, said: “It’s been great visiting the hospital with the animals again at this special time of year to spread some festive cheer and we’re looking forward to working closely with Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity as we countdown to The BIG Stampede.

“We have some great sponsors on board and are pleased to welcome Heart to the campaign. With less than six months to go, we’re going to be busy preparing for the arrival of Hamilton’s sculptural animal kingdom, which we hope will inspire locals, businesses and tourists to celebrate the creativity of the area, as well as raising valuable funds for an extremely worthwhile cause.”

The BIG Stampede will go on display from June to September 2017 with over 100 sculptures expected to take over Hamilton and the surrounding areas. The free public art event will bring businesses, artists and schools together to create a spectacular and colourful sculpture trail which will positively contribute to the economic, social and cultural life of the town and support Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity when the animals are auctioned.

The BIG Stampede follows proudly in the footsteps of Hamilton BID’s inaugural project with Wild in Art in 2014, which saw 25 giant Clydesdale horses and 30 mini ponies canter into town as part of the Ready Steady Gallop campaign which raised £67,800 for Kilbryde Hospice.

Wild in Art is one of the leading creative producers of spectacular, mass-appeal public art events which bring together business and creative sectors with schools and local communities through the creation of city-wide trails of uniquely painted sculptures.