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‘It was clear we needed to be involved’ - Elmers Hardware sponsors Elmer statue for 2019 trail

PUBLISHED: 21:41 06 March 2018 | UPDATED: 21:41 06 March 2018

Paul Elmer with Elmer the elephant at St Elizabeth Hospice. Picture: PROVIDED BY ST ELIZABETH HOSPICE

Paul Elmer with Elmer the elephant at St Elizabeth Hospice. Picture: PROVIDED BY ST ELIZABETH HOSPICE

Archant

When Kesgrave businessman Paul Elmer heard the theme for Suffolk’s next public art trail, he knew he would have to get involved.

Mr Elmer, who runs Elmers Hardware store, has become the latest firm to back Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk by sponsoring one of 50 elephant sculptures.

The statues, designed by local artists, will go on display in and around Ipswich during the summer of 2019 to raise money for St Elizabeth Hospice.

The project follows the hugely successful Pigs Gone Wild trail in 2016, and will once again be run in conjunction with public art event specialists, Wild in Art, as well as new partner, Andersen Press, which owns the publishing rights to Elmer the Patchwork Elephant.

Mr Elmer said: “When I heard about the plans for Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk, it was clear we needed to be involved in some way.

“We are a family owned and run business, established 60 years ago next year, and this seemed like the ideal way to mark the occasion.

“I am pleased to be able to support the hospice and our town in this way and am looking forward to seeing what the artists come up with for our Elmer.”

Norman Lloyd, campaign manager for St Elizabeth Hospice, said he was pleased have Elmers Hardware involved.

He added: “As soon as we knew that the trail was going to be based on ‘Elmer’ next year, I knew I would need to speak to Paul, so I’m really pleased that he has agreed to come on board.

“We are sure that Elmer’s Big Parade Suffolk is going to be a massive success, and it is thanks to our fantastic sponsors like Elmers Hardware, that we can make it happen.”

Pigs Gone Wild attracted around 250,000 visitors to Ipswich and boosted the local economy by an estimated £1 million.

The campaign raised £200,000 for St Elizabeth Hospice – enough to fund one week’s care.

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