'Music in the Wardown Park' trumpets the success of Keech's Big Trunk Trail in Luton

Rotary helps celebrate hospice's 30th anniversary

Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 10:22 am
Updated Wednesday, 21st July 2021, 10:24 am

Luton North Rotary are presenting ‘Music in Wardown Park’ at the Rotary Bandstand on Sunday, July 25 to celebrate Keech Hospice Care's Big Trunk Trail.

Supported by the Luton Mela, the event, which runs from midday until 4pm, includes acts from Charleigh Foxton, Kimberly Khan, Mariah Naser, Nesmina Parveen Nowrin, Dancing Stars, Dushna Dance Academy and III Kings. There will be face painting organised by the Luton Women’s Turkish Association, stalls and plenty of family-friendly fun in the sun!

Tahir Khan, President Elect of Luton North Rotary said “The club is very pleased to be able to mark the 30th anniversary year of Keech Hospice Care and recognise the charity’s vital contribution to our local communities.”

Music in Wardown Park

Zulfqar Ahmed, Chair of Luton Mela said: “We are excited about Luton North Rotary Music in Wardown Park and hope that through this event our local communities will also be able to learn more about the various community initiatives supported by the very active Rotary Luton North.”

Keech Hospice Care CEO, Liz Searle added: “I am delighted that the local community are supporting The Big Trunk Trail by organising their own events to raise funds for patients and their families supported by the hospice.

"Local Rotarians have been huge supporters of the hospice and Luton North Rotary are leading. We are incredibly grateful to them for organising this event as well as generously sponsoring large and small elephants, helping to bring the Big Trunk Trail to life.”

The Big Trunk Trail is a herd of more than 70 beautifully decorated elephants who have taken their places for the biggest public art event Bedfordshire has ever seen. The free, family-friendly outdoor installation sees the gorgeous creatures out and about across Luton’s parks and landmarks which include Wardown Park, the Town Hall, Stockwood Country Park and multiple locations across the town centre.

The elephants will be on parade from July 10 to October 8 as Keech Hospice Care’s way of saying thank you in their 30th anniversary year to everyone who has supported them through the decades.

A special map has been created to guide people on their elephant safari around the trail. Copies are available (with a suggested £1 donation) at the event. The map can also be followed in the Interactive Fun section of the special Keech Connect app which is packed with useful and fun elements. It shows where the elephants are, how to get to them and how long it will take. Visitors can keep track of how many of the colourful creatures they’ve seen and take advantage of some excellent money-off coupons for use in local shops.

Each of the 32 large elephants has kindly been sponsored by a local business or organisation including Luton North Rotary and event partners, London Luton Airport Ltd., The Mall Luton, University of Bedfordshire, Luton BID and AiSolve. The entire event has been made possible by tremendous support from Project Presenting Partner, Love Luton.

Other big names with their own decorated elephants include Great British Bake Off champion, Nadiya Hussain and the charity established in the name of a local fundraising hero, The Captain Tom Foundation. Some of the artists also have strong local links, like Luton born, former Turner Prize nominee, Mark Titchner whose best known works include the Beacon at the Hat Factory.

Forty-one baby elephants have been decorated by local schools and community groups as part of the Big Trunk Trail learning programme, thanks to generous support from Trail Partners, The University of Bedfordshire and London Luton Airport Ltd. The schools and groups have all been fundraising furiously and their calves are together in groups at six indoor locations including The Mall and the Central Library.

Liz Searle said: “I am excited at the thought of these magnificent elephants standing among Luton’s iconic attractions and streets, bringing colour and fun to the town. Another collective name for elephants is a ‘memory’ and, as a hospice, we hope The Big Trunk Trail will bring people together to remember loved ones while creating fantastic new memories.”

Linsey Frostick from Love Luton said: “Love Luton is all about showing Luton at its best, and that’s precisely what The Big Trunk Trail will do. We hope people who come in search of the herd will also discover some wonderful places around the town that they might never have otherwise even known existed. Elephants never forget, and we hope people will make marvellous memories to treasure when visiting the herd.”

As part of this unforgettable experience, there will also be the chance for people to own an elephant of their own when the trail comes to an end in October. The large elephant sculptures are being auctioned on November 11, with all the proceeds helping Keech Hospice Care continue its vital work, caring for adults in Luton and south Bedfordshire and children from Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Milton Keynes with life-limiting and terminal illnesses.

For anyone wishing to help the charity during the Trail, donations can be made via the Keech Connect app or by texting trunk to 70470 to make an instant £3 donation (£3 donation plus standard rate message). For more information on donating or participating in the auction visit The Big Trunk Trail website www.bigtrunktrail.co.uk or follow the herd on social media @BigTrunkTrail, #BigTrunkTrail.