Hampshire art trail holds event at Winchester Cathedral

A VIP sponsorship event for the Hares of Hampshire was recently held at Winchester Cathedral.


The art trail, operated by actress Sarah Parish’s charity The Murray Parish Trust, welcomed communications agency BECG, Norwegian Cruise Line and Williams Shipping and Transport as official sponsors at a VIP launch event.


Hosted by Sarah Parish, guests learned more about the project and the opportunities to get involved and understand how businesses and the charity sector can have a positive impact on communities.


Vivian Achwal, Mayor of Winchester, and her husband Dr. Sudhaker Achwal part.


The art trail will run for ten weeks from June 16 to September 4, 2022, and the bunnies will be installed in the streets, parks and public spaces of Winchester and Southampton.


Each rabbit is sponsored by a company and individually designed by local artists to showcase the district’s artistic talent while contributing to the economic, cultural and social life of the region.


Baby Bunny Sculptures, Leverets, are available to all schools and youth groups in Hampshire as part of the Little Leverets learning program.


The participating organizations will be able to design their own lever, which will be displayed in the cities alongside the larger bunnies.


Local residents and visitors can use an interactive app to go on the trail of discovery to find the rabbits.


The app tracks the route so anyone can explore some of Winchester’s famous landmarks, including Winchester Cathedral, The Great Hall, Abbey Grounds, River Park and Southampton’s Guildhall Square, QE2 Mile and Cultural Quarter.


As visitors visit each uniquely decorated bunny or bunny, the app allows users to receive special offers or discounts from the sponsor, as well as view information about the artist, facts about the bunny and its location.


The Hares of Hampshire event hopes to raise awareness and funds for the local charity The Murray Parish Trust, founded in 2014 by actors Sarah Parish and James Murray in memory of their late daughter who died of a congenital heart defect in 2009.


The charity has raised millions of pounds for facilities and equipment for seriously ill or injured children at Southampton University Hospital.
Sarah Parish said after her daughter’s death, “I got on my bike and rode my bike to clear my head, and in a nearby field I saw a young rabbit, a little hare.


“As we stood and stared at each other, I was filled with the most euphoric joy, suddenly everything that had happened in the last 12 months fit into its place.
“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings, Ella-Jayne would live on through the charity we founded in her memory, The Murray Parish Trust.”


James Murray said, “It was fantastic to have local businesses and executives at our first in-person event to introduce the campaign. We are pleased to have BECG, Norwegian Cruise Lines and Williams Shipping as partners for the campaign.
“We can’t wait to see a horde of rabbit sculptures in the summer of 2022 bringing new life and optimism to the streets of the city.”

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