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Mammoth Winnie created as part of Bishop's Castle elephant trail

By Aimee Jones | Bishop's Castle | Attractions | Published:

A local artist has created a life-sized mammoth out of brushwood as part of the Bishop's Castle elephant trail.

Ugg, Stig and Nettle with the mammoth created out of brushwood

The project, which hit the buffers late last year after failing to attract grant funding, has now been resurrected.

Keith Whiddon, from Bishop’s Castle Community Plan – the group behind the initiative, said the community has come together to make the first sculpture possible.

"We originally went for a big grant but were unsuccessful," he said.

Ugg, Stig and Nettle with the mammoth created out of brushwood

"But a lot of people were disappointed when we said it was no longer going to go ahead. They said they hoped it was going to carry on anyway.

"So we thought let's go ahead and do it smaller to start with, organically and take our time."

The group enlisted the help of local artist Bamber Hawes and members of the community to create a mammoth at the Wintles.

Mr Hawes said the reason to start with a mammoth is because the remains of a 14,000-year-old woolly mammoth was found in Condover in 1986 and is represented in a display at the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre nearby in Craven arms.

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The animal is rooted in the history of Bishop's Castle, from the Powis elephant crest in the Old Market Square to the elephants that were once kept in the Castle Hotel during the Second World War.

The mammoth created out of brushwood

Mr Whiddon said the mammoth, which has been nicknamed Winnie, marks the start of an ambitious project to create the March of the Elephants.

He hopes now the first piece of art is in place, the project could attract funding in the future.

"Winnie is absolutely wonderful," he added. "This is just the start. There will be an elephant theme at this year's Michaelmas Fair where we're thinking of creating a massive elephant lantern for the annual lantern parade. There will be lots of surprises coming throughout the year."

The original plan, which included a painting, a stained glass elephant and a tapestry, needed more than £50,000 to bring to fruition.

Aimee Jones

By Aimee Jones
@aimeejones_star

Senior reporter based at the Shropshire Star's Shrewsbury office, covering Shrewsbury, North Shropshire and South Shropshire.

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