How one Ipswich business has gone above and beyond to help those in their hour of need

Norman Llyod, Paul Ager and ABP staff with a cheque for �20,000 for Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk which

Norman Llyod, Paul Ager and ABP staff with a cheque for �20,000 for Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk which is raising funds for the St Elizabeth Hospice. Picture: St Elizabeth Hospice - Credit: St Elizabeth Hospice

One of the key sponsors of the Elmer’s Big Parade trail has achieved their goal of raising £20,000 for the hospice which hosted the major art event in Ipswich this summer.

Associated British Ports (ABP) were one of the first businesses in Ipswich to sign up to Elmer's Big Parade - Suffolk back in early 2018 and at the time they pledged to not only sponsor an elephant but also to raise an additional £3,500 for St Elizabeth Hospice.

But they went a step further and challenged themselves to raise a staggering £20,000 for the hospice, which provides care to patients in east Suffolk who have been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness. The hospice offers support from the time of diagnoses through to end-of-life care, and even provides help for grieving families.

The staggering sum raised by ABP will help patients when they need it most.

Norman Lloyd, Campaign Manager for Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk, said: "We really are indebted to ABP for their unwavering support and enthusiasm for our campaign.

"It is not an exaggeration to say that we could not run a campaign such as this without support from the business community and ABP really are a shining example of how you can integrate community and charity support into your day to day business - and have fun along the way."

The company have organised a whole range of fundraising activities which have engaged staff from all areas of their operation, including a charity bike ride between their bases in Ipswich and Lowestoft and a quiz night.

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Paul Ager, Divisional Port Manager at ABP, said: "ABP colleagues have really enjoyed being part of this campaign and raising funds for such a worthy cause. This initiative has also allowed us to build relationships with local community, working with them to support the East Anglia region."

Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk was organised in partnership with Wild in Art and Andersen Press.

The sculptures attraction thousands of visitors to Ipswich over the summer months who walked the breadth of the town centre hunting out the intricately designed art works.

For those who missed one or two, there is one last chance to see all of the Elmer's together at the weekend.

Elmer Packs His Trunk takes place at the Corn Exchange and Town Hall, Ipswich from Saturday, September 28 to Sunday, September 29.

Tikcets can be purchased through the Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk website.

In 2016, St Elizabeth Hospice ran the Pigs Gone Wild trail which attracted around 250,000 visitors to Ipswich and boosted the local economy by an estimated £1 million. It raised £200,000 for the hospice - enough to fund one week's care.