The North East’s biggest building society is joining a colourful charity campaign which aims to raise thousands of pounds for a local children’s hospice.
Newcastle Building Society has signed up as a sculpture sponsor of Elmer’s Great North Parade, an art trail which will feature over 70 individually-designed elephants located in streets, parks and public spaces across Tyne & Wear that are based on the much-loved children’s character, Elmer the patchwork elephant.
A local artist will shortly be allocated to design the Society’s Elmer, which will sit outside its Portland House principal office on New Bridge Street in central Newcastle, opposite the Laing Art Gallery.
The completed sculpture will be in place for the duration of the Parade, which will run from 21 August to 27 October this year.
Elmer’s Great North Parade will raise money for St Oswald’s Children’s Hospice in Gosforth and is a follow-up to the hugely-successful Great North Snowdogs event that took place three years ago.
A number of local schools and youth groups are also being invited to take part in the project by helping to decorate a ‘little herd’ of smaller Elmer sculptures.
Andrew Haigh, chief executive at Newcastle Building Society, says: “This is a fantastic project that has so many different aspects to it and we’re very excited to be getting involved.
“As well as being a creative event that will bring visitors to the region and reinforce the North East’s place on the cultural map of the UK, it will also help to raise new funds to support the vital services that St Oswald’s provides to local children and families in the most challenging of situations.
“We have a long-term commitment to supporting the communities in which we’re based, and joining Elmer’s Great North Parade is a great way for us to be doing so.”
Jane Hogan, head of fundraising for Elmer’s Great North Parade, said: “We are absolutely delighted Newcastle Building Society has come on board and is supporting Elmer’s Great North Parade, which is not only going to be one of the leading events in the region this summer, but will also raise much-needed funds for St Oswald’s Hospice.
“There’s no doubt the Parade is going to be absolutely fantastic, and the good news is that there is still time for other companies to follow in the footsteps of Newcastle Building Society and become part of this worthy cause.”