Elephants of Surprise in Bristol Shopping Quarter over Easter


How do you hide a herd of elephants in Bristol Shopping Quarter? You get the retailers to help – and over the school Easter holidays 40 shops in Broadmead and The Galleries will host a unique and beautifully decorated elephant.

The hefty herd is currently being decorated in schools across Bristol and South Gloucestershire in readiness for the annual event, now in its sixth year and featuring a different beast each time.

Trail organiser, Jenny Bourne of The Ark Project, says: “The Elephant Trail is a great way of keeping your children entertained during the school holidays. It starts on Saturday 8 April, and free trail maps can be collected from The New Room, John Wesley’s Chapel on The Horsefair as well as from the information desk in Cabot Circus, Specsavers in Merchant Street, and Barber Brown on Bond Street. You can also download a copy HERE.

“The idea is to find each of the elephants and write their names in the grid on the back of the map. When all the elephants have been ticked off and named, children can take their completed map to The New Room and claim a chocolate reward.”

The theme for this year’s trail is ‘Memorable Moments’ because elephants never forget, with each elephant being named after a different well-known person.

Jenny adds: “The people who inspired our elephants’ names range from famous Bristolians, past and present, to international celebrities. What they all have in common is that they followed their beliefs and passion to achieve something amazing”.

“Many of these people had no idea of the legacy they would leave behind because of their moment in history. It is a reminder to us all that we all have the capacity to do amazing things and that we can all make a difference in a moment.”

Last year’s Zebra Trail attracted over 800 visitors to The New Room. This year the chapel, tucked away in the heart of Broadmead, will play host to the entire collection for a further week at the end of the school holidays (24-30 April) to give people an opportunity to see the herd displayed together.

The New Room will also be offering other great activities throughout the Easter holidays, including inviting visitors – young and old alike – to draw a memorable moment to add to the ‘Memory Wall’, and to help make bunting for the grand opening in July of its new education centre.

The Galleries will also host jungle themed events on Saturday 8 and Thursday 20 April and Cabot Circus are joining in the fun too, playing host to a giant colouring-in elephant throughout the holidays and transforming the Central Space outside House of Fraser into an exciting jungle world on Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 April when families can expect free jungle-themed activities such as mask decorating and games, led by their very own jungle ranger.

The Ark Project is part of The Bristol and South Gloucestershire Methodist Circuit that runs out of two converted VW vans and supports both local Methodist Churches and community events across Bristol and South Gloucestershire.

Further information and updates on The Elephant Trail are available at www.facebook.com/TheArkBus. For more details on events at The New Room see http://www.newroombristol.org.uk/