Bacon memories; looking back at the Pigs Gone Wild trail

Norman Lloyd with Ed Sheer-Ham and Tally-Ho outside the University of Suffolk during Pigs Gone Wild.

Norman Lloyd with Ed Sheer-Ham and Tally-Ho outside the University of Suffolk during Pigs Gone Wild. Norman will also be project manager of the new trail. Picture: SIMON PARKER

Summer 2016 saw Ipswich town centre invaded by a sounder of swine as the Pigs Gone Wild art trail dominated the town.

Lilian Wesson with one of the pig sculptures in Ipswich in 2016. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Lilian Wesson with one of the pig sculptures in Ipswich in 2016. Picture: GREGG BROWN - Credit: Gregg Brown

The project, run by the St Elizabeth Hospice, was originally launched at the Suffolk Show back in May 2015 with Tally-ho Trotters being the first piece to be unveiled.

The call quickly went out to local businesses and artists for help in sponsoring and creating the porky pieces. Whilst local schools were given piglets to add their own creative touch to.

The final line up of 69 pigs was trotted across Ipswich in June 2016. Visitors were encouraged to travel around the town with an app being created to help them collect the pigs.

Awards were also on offer from local businesses to those who found specific statues.

Reader favourite Hedgepig at the Pigs Gone Wild event

Reader favourite Hedgepig at the Pigs Gone Wild event - Credit: Archant


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A Pigs Gone Wild sticker collection was also created to help get visitors of all ages interested in the project.

Initial estimates for the pigs estimated that they would help to raise around £100,000 for the hospice. The pigs were auctioned off last September and with the help of additional funds raised over the course of the trail the amount raised was £200,000, twice this original estimate.

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The top selling pig on the night was Ipswich Blue, which was deisgned by Dutch illustrator and artist Julia Allum, making £6,500.

Project manager, Norman Lloyd was delighted with the final total achieved; “We were always hopeful that we would reach and exceed £100,000 but never in our wildest dreams did we imagine we would reach £200,000. That sort of money was a dream beforehand and it has left us all speechless.”

In August 2016 EADT readers were asked to vote for their favourite of the designs on the trail; with Suffolk Wildlife Trusts’ Hedgepig coming out on top, beating other big name hogs such as Major Henry Wigglesworth and Ed Sheer-Ham.

The design based on the Framlingham singer was discretely bought by the man himself,on auction night.

As well as raising a significant amount of money for charity the pigs also helped to bring £1 million to Ipswich in direct spending done during the trail.

Research undertaken by Suffolk County Council also revealed that 87% of those who visited the trail believed it helped to create a stronger sense of community. Whilst 70% said it helped them view the town as a better place for arts and culture.

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