A Grand Unveiling of Brizzle-phant

Michelle and Larry unveil Brizzle-phant sculpture

The unique art sculpture, along with 25 other life-sized baby elephant sculptures, was unveiled by the zoo’s MD Larry Bush and Just Childcare sponsor Michelle Ioannou Thursday 30th June.

“We had a lovely evening at the Elephant Parade launch. Unveiling Brizzle-phant was brilliant! It is a pleasure to be part of such a wonderful event and addition to the zoo, that children and families can enjoy and will support such amazing conservation causes. I can’t wait for our nursery’s children to see Brizzle-phant and take part in the elephant trail!” said Michelle Ioannou, Flying Start Nursery Manager.

‘Brizzle-phant’ was inspired by the combination of the vibrant landscapes of Bristol and North Somerset. The Bristol side of the design includes the iconic colourful houses, famous hot air balloons, the Matthew, and Clifton Suspension Bridge. The North Somerset side of the design includes part of Bristol’s Suspension Bridge, Tyntesfield House, Britain’s longest hedge maze at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm and, of course, lots of wildlife and luscious countryside too!

The Brizzle-phant design even includes a giant smiley face in the sky commemorating the challenges that we have all faced and overcome over the past 2 years. The smiley faces were drawn in the sky above Bristol by pilot Richard Goodwin, bringing joy to thousands during the height of the pandemic and the strict covid restrictions in June 2020.  The team at Noah’s Ark remember these smiley faces fondly and as a result it was important to include this in the unique elephant sculpture’s design.

“It’s such a privilege to host the only Elephant Parade® in the UK this year.  Noah’s Ark joins the likes of London, Luxembourg and Dubai as hosts with other parades this year taking place in Las Vagas and the Netherlands.  We hope Elephant Parade® will put Wraxall on the map!” said Larry Bush, the zoo’s Managing Director.

Each of the remaining 25 sculptures have been chosen to represent the zoo’s values and conservation aims. From designs about reducing plastic waste ‘Nature will overcome’, to an elephant called ‘United Hands’, recognising the importance of communities working together; the trail aims to explore messages of conservation, acceptance, and inclusion.

Children discovering elephants on the trail

In addition to the trail, supporting Elephant Conservation through Elephant Parade® itself, local businesses have sponsored many of the Elephants throughout the trail raising more than £10,000 for conservation charities so far. These funds will be donated to conservation charities supported by the zoo including but not limited to ‘Spectacled Bear Conservation’ and ‘The World Land Trust’.

“We wanted to thank all the sponsors for getting involved in this event and raising such an incredible amount of money for our conservation charities. The money raised will go directly to support conservation work to protect animals and their habitats. Our aim as a zoo is to conserve and protect amazing animal species for future generations whilst educating our visitors on ways, we can all help to protect our planet and safeguard animal habitats.” said Clare Wesener, Marketing Manager at Noah’s Ark.

Elephant Parade® at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm has also engaged hundreds of school aged children in themes of conservation with a local children’s competition. The winning child, from Bournville Primary School, Weston Super Mare, secured a free school visit for 100 children! With many runners up including entries from Baytree School, Oasis Academy, St Joseph’s Primary School, Dundry Primary, Nailsea Rainbows, Brownies and Guides! All the children’s designs are on display in the Elephant House at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm for the duration of the parade.

Whilst an exciting activity for day visitors to the zoo, the installation carries a strong conservation message to highlight the plight of wild elephants and explain the important work of the social enterprise Elephant Parade®. The organisation was started by father and son Marc and Mike Spits. The pair were moved by the emotional story of a 7 month old Asian elephant called Mosha they met in Thailand who had survived standing on a land mine, but lost her right leg. Mosha was made a special prosthetic leg which has made daily life much easier for her. Today, The Friends of the Asian Elephant Hospital is still the home of Mosha in Lampang, Thailand. Mosha, meaning ‘Star’ is an ambassador for Elephants around the world and a dedicated sculpture of her can be found outside the elephant house at Noah’s Ark throughout the event.

Visit the zoo between 1st July and 31st August 2022 to take part in the trail and find out more about Mosha and the conservation of elephants around the world.

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With special thanks to all our Sponsors;

Just Childcare; Clifton Coffee; Tibbs and Simmons; Twentysix01; Three Cherries Ltd; Albert Goodman; Chapel & Jenkins; Alvis Contracting LLP; Voodoo Designs; Sworders; Wyatts Construction Ltd; NFU Mutal; Bennetts Ice Cream, VWV; Pcknowles Agricultural Contractors; Avon & Somerset Constabulary Services Club; DigiTickets; Paradise Wildlife Park; Keycraft and the team at Noah’s Ark Zoo Farm.

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