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Elmers prepare to pack their trunks ahead of big charity auction

Norman Lloyd at the launch of the Elmer trail Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Norman Lloyd at the launch of the Elmer trail Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Archant

The trail is due to finish on Sunday, September 8, with much sadness expected as the elephants which have brought much joy to Ipswich's streets are taken away.

Norman Lloyd and Jan Parry officially open the Elmer trail Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNNorman Lloyd and Jan Parry officially open the Elmer trail Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

But there will be one last chance to see all 140 Elmers - including the newest edition to the herd, Hero - when they are gathered at Ipswich Corn Exchange and Town Hall for one last goodbye.

The event, on Saturday, September 28 and Sunday, September 29 will give people the chance to see the herd in all its glory, to snap a few last-minute selfies and to collect the final app codes they need to finish their collection.

It will also give those eager to own an Elmer the chance to view the patchwork elephants before they go under the hammer during an auction at Ipswich Town Hall on Thursday, October 3.

All the Elmers will be inspected at the farewell event for scuffs and scratches, with artists brought back in to make any necessary touch ups.

Norman Lloyd and Jan Parry at the launch of the parade  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNNorman Lloyd and Jan Parry at the launch of the parade Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Norman Lloyd, Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk campaign manager, said: "This is about bringing all the Elmers together for one last time so the public can come and see them all in one place.

"It is a celebration of all the Elmers because we know on September 8 when we take them away there will so much sadness in the town.
"This will give people a last chance to see them all.

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"The parade has been really popular, whenever we go out in the town we see people with the Elmers taking selfies.

"It really gives us a warm glow seeing people interacting with the Elmers and each other and having so much fun.

"We have also been knocked out by the generosity of the public."

Elmer's Big Parade looks to raise thousands of pounds for St Elizabeth Hospice.

The farewell event will be split into hourly sessions, which can be booked though the Ipswich Regent and Corn Exchange box office at ipswichtheatres.co.uk

The first two sessions of each day, at 9am on the Saturday and Sunday, will be reserved for those with disabilities or special needs.

Mr Lloyd said they will be quieter sessions to encourage families to pop along and see the sculptures in a more controlled environment.

"The idea is it opens it up to everyone," said Mr Lloyd.

For more information visit www.elmersbigparadesuffolk.co.uk

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