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Shaun in the City flocks to Paddington

Shaun and the City being launched in London

Press release issued: 9 March 2015

Although it’s famous for another fictional character, Paddington Train Station will soon be home to a giant Shaun the Sheep thanks to a new public art trail involving 120 eye-catching sculptures.

The friendly sheep, who will live in the famous train station for two months as part of the Shaun in the City campaign, is being sponsored by the University of Bristol and will welcome millions of visitors as they pass through the busy transport hub. It's been designed by Bristol-based artist Jenny Urquhart.

Following in the footsteps of the hugely popular Gromit Unleashed trail which transformed the streets of Bristol in 2013, an even bigger spectacle – this time in both London and Bristol - has been planned to support and improve the lives of children in hospitals throughout the UK.

Each city trail will feature its own flock of giant Shaun the Sheep sculptures, decorated by celebrities and artists to create a vibrant city landscape of colourful and witty designs.

Exact details of the Shaun sculpture being sponsored by the University of Bristol will be revealed at the trail’s launch event at the end of March. The Bristol trail gets underway on 6 July.

Shaun in the City coincides with the Chinese Year of the Sheep and follows the release of Aardman Animations’ Shaun the Sheep the Movie, which saw the mischievous character make his big screen debut.

It’s expected to attract visitors and interest from across the globe. Paddington Station alone has over 30 million passengers every year.

Professor Guy Orpen, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at the University of Bristol, said: “We’re very proud to be part of the exciting Shaun in the City project, which will be enjoyed by millions of people. It’s especially rewarding to know that our support will directly help the great work being done to help sick children in Bristol Children’s Hospital and in hospitals across the UK

“It’s apt that our sculpture will be located in one of the world’s most magnificent train stations, built by Isambard Kingdom Brunel as a terminus for the Great Western Railway linking Bristol to London. It’s through such feats of engineering that Bristol has become a great city itself; and events such as Shaun in the City highlight the creativity for which Bristol is so well known.

"Shaun the Sheep's popularity overseas is astounding. I was struck, when talking to colleagues from Japan recently, that the links between Shaun, Aardman and Bristol are a remarkably powerful way to spark interest in the city and University."

Bristol University has a strong commitment to public art and has supported previous art trails in the city. The ‘Going Going Gone’ gorilla which was part of the Wow! Gorillas trail in 2011 to celebrate Bristol Zoo’s 175th anniversary now lives in the new Life Sciences building and Gromit sculpture ‘Bark at Ee’ is inside the Wills Memorial Building.

Shaun the Sheep is one of Bristol-based Aardman Animations’ best loved characters, with over four and a half million fans on social media and TV series which is broadcast in 170 territories world-wide. It was recently voted the nation’s all-time favourite BBC children’s TV character.

The 5ft high sculptures will spring up in key, central locations around the capital including the City of London, Westminster, Southbank and iconic tourist destinations. 

Following both trails, in autumn 2015, the flocks will go on display to the general public, prior to a grand auction to raise money for sick children in hospitals across the UK.

Shaun the Sheep creator Nick Park is closely involved with the project and will be designing one of the sculptures on the trail himself.

He said: “Shaun is such a well-loved character with fans all over the world. He will add such colour to our streets and I am sure many will flock to the City to be part of the fun. I am particularly looking forward to working with so many talented artists and seeing how they will use Shaun as their canvas.”

Further information

About the Wallace & Gromit’s Children’s Charity

The Wallace & Gromit’s Children’s Charity is a national charity raising funds to support and improve the lives of children in hospitals and hospices throughout the UK. The Charity supports a network of children’s hospitals and hospices in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, granting funding for projects that provide comforts and facilities for patients including state of the art equipment, family accommodation, art, music and play therapy as well as direct costs for hospice care, respite care and sensory equipment. The Charity to date has awarded around £2 million in over 200 grants to children’s hospitals and hospices throughout the UK.

Wallace & Gromit’s Children’s Charity will benefit from funds raised from the flock of 50 sculptures placed in London during spring 2015.

Funds raised from the auction of the 70 Shaun in the City sculptures placed in Bristol in the summer will benefit Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Appeal, the Bristol Children’s Hospital Charity.

Shaun in the City

Shaun in the City is a public arts trail from Wallace & Gromit’s Children’s Foundation, the team behind the award-winning Gromit Unleashed trail in 2013.

120 5ft sculptures of Shaun the Sheep will be designed and decorated by famous artists, designers and celebrities, of which 50 will placed in iconic locations in London (28 March – 25 May 2015) and 70 will be placed in Bristol (6 July – 31 August 2015). The trail will culminate in a public exhibition and charity auction in autumn 2015.  

Aardman Animations & Shaun the Sheep

Aardman Animations is an award winning British animation studio that has an outstanding global reputation for creating enduringly popular characters and quality family entertainment.

Shaun the Sheep made his debut in 1995 in the Oscar-winning Wallace & Gromit short film, A Close Shave. Since then he’s gone on to become a global superstar with his show on TV in 170 territories. His first feature length movie will hit cinemas in February 2015. Shaun was recently voted the nation’s best loved BBC children’s character of all time in a survey by the Radio Times.

© and TM Aardman Animations Limited 2015. All rights reserved.

“Shaun the Sheep” and “Shaun in the City” (word marks) and the character ‘Shaun the Sheep’ are trade marks used under licence from Aardman Animations Limited

“Shaun in the City” is a fundraising initiative by Wallace and Gromit’s Children’s Foundation, raising money for children in hospital across the UK. Charity no. 1043603.

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