Birmingham gets bear ready for second big hoot trial


Over one hundred giant bear sculptures will be leaving their paw prints all over Birmingham next summer, as the city gets set to be known as Bear-mingham in 2017.

Following the flying success of The Big Hoot last year, Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity and creative producers Wild in Art have announced that a second trail is planned for summer 2017, but this time the colourful characters will be sun bears instead of owls.

The Big Sleuth, so named because sleuth is the collective noun for a group of bears, will see the individually designed, 165cm tall, sculptures appearing throughout the city, inspiring residents and tourists to uncover Birmingham’s cultural gems and discover areas of the city they may not have explored before.

Funded by corporates from around the region, the sculptures will be brought to life by regional and national artists to create the visually stunning trail of art.

Michelle McLoughlin, Chief Nursing Officer at Birmingham Children’s Hospital, said:

“The Big Sleuth is really important to Birmingham Children’s Hospital as not only will it inspire civic pride and give families another opportunity to get active on a free and fun day out, but we also hope to raise over half a million pounds to support the pioneering work we do here each day.

Sally-Ann Wilkinson, Director of Wild in Art, said:

“We are delighted to premiere our Sun Bear sculpture in Birmingham.  The sculpture has been purposefully designed to act as a 3D canvas for artists, communities and young people to bring to life with the many hundreds of unique designs showcasing the city’s creativity; its heritage notwithstanding spirit of fun.

Last year 78 per cent of visitors stated that The Big Hoot was their main reason for being in Birmingham. Collectively, these visitors spent an additional £8 million directly as a result.

Paul Faulkner, Chief Executive of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, added:

“The Big Hoot was a fantastic experience for Birmingham, not only in raising valuable funds for Birmingham Children’s Hospital but also in terms of helping to lift the city’s profile as well as the spirits and health of those who participated in tracking down all the different owls.

To find out more about The Big Sleuth, visit

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