What is happening now
The Otter Wey Trail is coming towards the end of its time. The otters have been on display around the town for nearly two months and were brought together for Farnham Carnival on 30th May
During the Carnival, members of the public were asked to vote for their favourite otter. The overall winner of this was "The King", the otter painted by for Pullingers. The winner for the schools and community projects was "Prancer" designed and decorated by Folly Hill School. Prancer will now return to Folly Hill School and will not be in the Auction on 9th July. To see all the otters click here and go to the Otter Gallery.
The winner of the Otter Trail competiton was also announced at the Carnival. This was a competition open to people who followed the Otter Wey Trail and found at least 20 of the otter names. There were hundreds of entries, the most Farnham Town Council has had for any similar event. The luck winner was George K (full name withheld) and he and his family will be presented with the Farnham In Bloom otter, "Sunny the Blooming Otter" at the Auction on 9th July. Congratulations to George and all those who took part.
Sunny the Blooming Otter will be doing additional duty by being presented to the judges from South East In Bloom when they come to see the town in July.
more about the Otter Wey Trail
The Otter Wey was an art trail made up of 1 metre tall model otters, which were decorated by participants and were exhibited around Farnham. The art trail is the inspiration of Mike Hodge (Mayor of Farnham 2017/18) and was run by Blooming Art, supported by Farnham Town Council and our major sponsor, Farnham Lions. 44 otters were produced for the trail and were on display in May and June. Maps of the trail were published both in paper form and on line and there was a competition open to all that required entrants to find the names of at least 20 otters. Hundreds took part and submitted entries. On 30th June all the otters were together as a Romp of Otters for Farnham Carnival in Gostrey Meadows. Then on 9th June they will go on auction at Farnham Castle. There will be a "silent auction" before that date.
The otters have been decorated by a mix of professional, amateur and community group artists and sponsored by local businesses and community organisations, thus enabling further collaboration between artists, makers, community groups and local businesses to create a wonderful temporary open air art gallery in the midst of Farnham Craft Town. You can see all the otters on "Follow the Otters"
Otters in particular were chosen following evidence of their return to the River Wey presented by Surrey Wildlife Trust. The river is an important spine for Farnham, forming a wildlife corridor through the centre of town, linking important green spaces such as Bishop's Meadow, Gostrey Meadows and Borrelli Walk, as well as forming part of Farnham's celebrated industrial heritage, firmly rooted in the creative industries.
The Otter Wey has reached all parts of our community. We have involved local schools , voluntary groups and businesses. Some participants have chosen to use the project as a collective work, designing and executing it by themselves, but others have involved a professional artist to assist them in their production or to create an otter for them. This project has provided the opportunity for disparate groups to come together, and also allowed those taking part to develop their own creative skills and present them to a wide public showcase at venues such as public and historic buildings, local businesses and in the local landscape.
The trail has enable us to welcome thousands of visitors to the Town, not just to explore the Otter Wey Trail, but to explore the other projects, businesses and creative industries the town has to offer.
The trail has reached wide, familiar and new audiences through publicity from each of the artists, sponsors and community groups all promoting the events, partnerships and decorated otters through press and social media, spreading to a national audience.
The culmination of the Trail will be an auction of the sculptures on 9th July 2018, with all proceeds being placed back into the local community. The beneficiaries will be charities chosen by the Town Mayor, Mike Hodge: The Woodlarks Centre and The Gostrey Brightwells Community Centre.
WAYS TO GET INVOLVED
We would like as many local businesses, community groups and artists, both amateur and professional, as possible to get involved with The Otter Wey. If you feel you would like to get involved in the project please continue to read below. If you have a particular skill or would like to volunteer with the project, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 01252 447581.
Blooming Art and Farnham Lions want as many local businesses and organisations as possible to be involved in this project to make it a true community project.
A sponsor will have the opportunity to design and produce an otter which can then be put on display as part of the trail, either at or near your business or in another agreed public location. By taking part your business will have the opportunity either for your employees to work together to decorate an otter or to commission an artist to do this for you. As all the otters are now out on display if you still want to sponsor you can get involved in the Auction. For more information on the Auction please contact Sally Ross at Farnham Lions
There are 3 options for sponsorship available:
£500.00 – for this you get the otter model and you are responsible for decorating it. You can either gift it to a local school or community organisation to decorate or decorate it yourselves and then display it at your premises but it must be accessible to the public. You must agree to put your otter into The Otter Wey trail and for it to go into the public auction. Included in this sponsorship we will produce a plaque for every otter detailing the name you choose, acknowledging your sponsorship, and naming the artist.
£250.00 – This is only available as an addition to option 1. For this you get an artist to decorate your otter to your specification. The artist is responsible for ensuring it is delivered in a condition fit for outside display and you will display it at your own premises. You must still agree to put your otter into The Otter Wey trail and for it to go into the public auction.
£250.00 – In addition to option 1, and the optional addition of option 2 if you need an artist provided, you can choose option 3 as well and that ensures you will own the otter after it has been on display as a part of The Otter Wey Trail - it will then be returned to you and not be entered into the auction.
For clarity, if you wish to sponsor an otter, have an artist decorate it for you, and own the otter in perpetuity, the sponsorship cost would be £500 + £250 +£250 = £1000.
So, what do you have to do to be part of this? Simply read the terms and conditions, then download, complete and return the sponsorship form to us with an accompanying cheque made payable to “Lions Club of Farnham”. It is as easy as that.
We hope you are as excited as we are with this fantastic community project. 100% of the profits will go to the Mayors charity and be divided between Woodlarks Centre and The Brightwells Gostrey Community Centre – two very worthwhile local organisations that we are delighted to support.
For and on behalf of Blooming Arts, The Mayor of Farnham and Lions Club of Farnham
If you would like to be considered as one of our artists for The Otter Wey please contact email@example.com or use our sign-up form to request more information. Please apply before 31st January 2018. Please ensure you have read the terms and conditions,
As all the otters are now decorated and out on display it is no longer possible to apply to take part in decorating an otter.
The organisations below have taken part.
As all the otters are now out on display it is no longer possible to apply for an otter for your school.
The schools below have taken part.
Sponsors & Supporters
The Otter Wey Trail is a not-for-profit run by volunteers from Blooming Art CIC* and is financed by sponsorship and donations. Your help can make a big difference and ensure the running of the project, for example material costs for schools, community groups and individual amateur and professional artists. It will help us raise awareness through PR, Marketing and Printing costs. All contributions from no matter how large or small are very welcome and we will let you know exactly how your contribution has been used.
We would like to thank all our sponsors and supporters who have taken part so far.
Please do read the terms and conditions, of the project.
To send a donation, or for enquiries about how to make a donation please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01252 447581.
If you want to be kept in touch with the Otters or have any questions about The Otter Wey please contact us.