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James Crawley

James Crawley writes

Posted Thursday, May 17th 2018

Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Appeal trail returns to Ashton Gate

Ashton Gate, the home of Bristol City and Bristol Rugby, will host one of more than 60 sculptures as part of the Gromit Unleashed 2 trail this summer.

The stadium has once again been chosen as a lucky venue to display one of the characters, iconic to Bristol-based Ardman Animations.

It is the second time that Ashton Gate has hosted a sculpture as part of the Wallace & Gromit Grand Appeal trail. The last trail was held during the stadium redevelopment in 2015 which saw a special Shaun The Sheep sculpture take up residency at BS3.

The trail will see sculptures of Academy Award-winning characters Wallace, Gromit and Feathers McGraw descend in and around Bristol between July 2nd and September 2nd.

Bristol Sport chairman Jon Lansdown said: "We are once again proud to be supporting the Wallace & Gromit Grand Appeal and are looking forward to unveiling our sculpture very soon!

"It is vitally important to raise awareness and money for the great work that this charity does, so please get behind the campaign and we look forward to welcoming everyone following the trail."

Nicola Masters, Director of The Grand Appeal which is Bristol Children’s Hospital charity, said: “We are incredibly fortunate to live in such a wonderfully diverse city, and we are proud to showcase as much of beautiful Bristol and its surrounding areas as possible through our third charity arts trail.

“Over the last year, we have worked with our amazing sponsors, local community groups and the council to determine the best locations for each sculpture. It’s only with the support from our local community that we can continue to support sick children and their families at Bristol Children’s Hospital, so we are delighted that we are able to give something back to our supporters.”

St Marks Road in Easton and the Royal Fort Gardens at the University of Bristol join the trail for the first time, which again will encompass areas such as Clifton Suspension Bridge, Temple Meads and The Mall at Cribbs Causeway for its iconic sculptures.

A Gromit Unleashed 2 app will be available to help avid trail fans to hunt down sculptures, while a special passport trail will be created to celebrate the trail’s innovation themes.

New Gromit Unleashed 2-inspired products, including the popular figurines, will be available for purchase with all proceeds benefitting patients and families cared for by Bristol Children’s Hospital and the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at St Michael’s Hospital.

Nicola said: “Raising money to support Bristol Children’s Hospital and the Neonatal Unit is at the heart of everything we do, and we want to highlight how lucky we are to have a world class children’s hospital on our doorstep. Every single penny donated, raised and spent during Gromit Unleashed 2 will help us to support sick children, babies and their families who come from not just Bristol, but from across the whole of the South West and South Wales for lifesaving care.”

As well as the returning popular elements, The Grand Appeal has revealed that new, unprecedented trail ‘innovations’ will keep trail fans on their toes.

Nicola added: “Our dedicated ‘Trailblazer’ partners – Rolls-Royce, Renishaw, University of Bristol and Creditcall – are busy working away to create some very special sculptures for our eager trail fans. You’ll have to wait a few more weeks before we reveal more – it wouldn’t be a Grand Appeal trail without a few surprises!”

For all the latest Gromit Unleashed updates, follow The Grand Appeal on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or visit www.gromitunleashed.org.uk