After two years of planning, three months on the streets of Nottingham, three days of farewell events and one big, hugely successful charity auction, our beloved Hoodwinked robins have flown the roost.
They’ve left their perches after three fun-packed months entertaining visitors and locals and are migrating to their new forever homes after every robin sold at auction on 18 October.
An incredible £133,000 was raised for Nottinghamshire Hospice – a local charity which cares for adults with cancer and other terminal or life-limiting illnesses – at the auction held at St Mary’s Church, after all 34 robins sold. Sale prices for each robin ranged from £3000 to £5,800.
The robin bringing in the top price of £5,800 was Julie Vernon’s beautiful mosaic ‘royal robin redbreast’ who has been a firm favourite with the public throughout the trail – it was voted the most popular robin on the Hoodwinked trail app.
In Sherwood, a group who began a crowdfunding page to raise money to bring one of the robins to Sherwood for the local community was hugely successful – raising over £7,000 and bagging Sherwood two fantastic robins:
- Carnival Celebrations – created by local Sherwood artist Jess Kemp, this robin reflects how our local cultures and communities come together through carnivals, melas, parades and parties in a universal celebration of human life and love
- Nottingham Forest – created by the Nottingham Playhouse Paintshop team, this robin was inspired by the green spaces in the city and the wildlife that inhabits them.
Daniel Walker, who organised the Sherwood community bid, said: “We’re so happy that our idea – only conceived a week ago – to bring a robin to Sherwood has been so successful! We’ve had tremendous support from groups including Seely Primary School, who raised £151 from staff and pupils in just two days, and Sherwood Textile Workshop, who donated an amazing £500.
“But the majority of the money was contributed by local people who love the robins and want to see one permanently in Sherwood. Thanks to their generosity – we’re getting not one, but two!
“We’re looking forward to working with our local councillors and Neighbourhood Development Officer to get our robins to their forever homes in Sherwood.”
The Hoodwinked trail was brought to the city by Nottingham City Council in partnership with Wild in Art and Nottinghamshire Hospice. Council officers have worked hard over the past 24 months to plan the trail, design the statues, secure sponsorship, recruit artists, develop the Hoodwinked app, promote the trail and work out the logistics of moving 33 five-foot tall robins around the city.
Nottingham businesses have stepped in to help in a big way too. City Council colleagues worked from 8am–1am the next day with J. Murphy and Sons to transport the robins safely off the streets and into storage at Nottingham Castle ahead of the farewell events and auction.
Nigel Hawkins, Head of Culture and Libraries at Nottingham City Council, said: “What an incredible result for Hoodwinked! It’s been two years of hard work planning the trail, with colleagues from across the City Council pitching in on top of their day jobs, and it’s all paid off.”
Councillor Dave Trimble, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Localities at Nottingham City Council, said: “Nottingham City Council are so proud to have brought the Hoodwinked trail to the city. We hoped people would embrace it and it would be a great, free activity for everyone during the summer holidays – but even we were surprised by just how much Nottingham people have taken the robins to their hearts.
“£133,000 will make a huge difference to Nottinghamshire Hospice, and the Hoodwinked bookbenches have a permanent home at the Nottingham city primary schools involved as a lasting legacy of the trail.”
Rowena Naylor-Morrell, Chief Executive at Nottinghamshire Hospice, said: “The amount raised will make a huge difference to the patients and work of the hospice.
It has been an incredible partnership with Nottingham City Council and Wild in Art and we are particularly delighted that two of the robins were bought by the Sherwood community via a crowdfunding project supported by the whole community.”